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Xbox's The Initiative snaps up Crystal Dynamics, Naughty Dog and Respawn vets in new wave of hires

Xbox's The Initiative snaps up Crystal Dynamics, Naughty Dog and Respawn vets in new wave of hires

Microsoft's Santa Monica studio The Initiative has made a new slew of hires.

In a post on LinkedIn from studio head Darrell Gallagher (pictured), the developer revealed that it has snapped up Respawn alum Justin Perez, Daniel Steamer and Remi Lacoste, both formerly of Crystal Dynamics, and Naughty Dog vets Francisco Aisa García and Sylvia Chambers.

That's on top of Christine Thompson, who previously worked at Bungie and has been hired as lead writer, senior tech artist Fabian Elmers, who worked at Magic Leap until April of this year, Playground Games vet Richard Burns. The studio has also hired Anthony Silva from That's Eatertainment Corp, USC's Yuka Murata. According to LinkedIn, the company now has 49 employees.

This is the latest wave of hires that the studio has conducted following its reveal back at E3 2018, alongside four acquisitions. Studio head Gallagher says that The Initiative's job is to "making something ground-breaking." Xbox boss Phil Spencer has hinted that the studio is working on both old and new IP.

Last year, we took a look at who The Initiative had managed to snap up since it was announced.


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PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site PCGamesInsider.biz. In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for GamesIndustry.biz, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.

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