Arkane Austin, Tango Gameworks Closures Were “Hard Decisions” Made for “Sustainable Business” – Phil Spencer

Hi-Fi Rush

In an interview with IGN, Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer has addressed some of the criticisms caught by the company because of its recent studio closures, including Hi-Fi Rush developer Tango Gameworks. According to Spencer, the decision to shut the studios down were hard ones made to keep the business sustainable.

“The closure of any team is hard obviously on the individuals there, hard on the team,” Spencer said. “I haven’t been talking publicly about this, because right now is the time for us to focus on the team and the individuals. It’s obviously a decision that’s very hard on them, and I want to make sure through severance and other things that we’re doing the right thing for the individuals on the team. It’s not about my PR, it’s not about Xbox PR. It’s about those teams.”

Spencer went on to talk about needing to make decisions like this in order to run a sustainable business. While studios like Arkane Austin and Tango Gameworks have now been shut down, Microsoft still has plans to grow its business moving forward.

“In the end, I’ve said over and over, I have to run a sustainable business inside the company and grow, and that means sometimes I have to make hard decisions that frankly are not decisions I love, but decisions that somebody needs to go make,” he continued. “We will continue to go forward. We will continue to invest in what we’re trying to go do in Xbox and build the best business we can, which ensures we can continue to do shows like the one we just did.”

Microsoft announced the closure of a number of studios back in May. The list of studios affected included Roundhouse Studios, Alpha Dog Studios, Arkane Austin, and Tango Gameworks. When it made the announcement, head of content and studios at Xbox, Matt Booty, stated that the closures were made due to a “reprioritization of titles and resources”.

Interestingly, several fans of games made by these studios took to the game’s Steam store listings to review bomb the titles with positive reviews, encouraging more players to play games like The Evil Within, Hi-Fi Rush, and Ghostwire: Tokyo.

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