“Mattrick’s departure will be Xbox One’s pivot point”

Rob Fahey, Gamesindustry.biz:

“… Does anyone really think that a senior, superbly wealthy executive has a bad show at E3, hits the phones and organises a new CEO gig at a multi-billion dollar company to parachute himself into in the space of less than a month? As much as it’s a great story to tell – Mattrick fired for Xbox One’s failures, quickly lining up a new role to make it all look better to the world – it’s clearly, patently not accurate.

“Don Mattrick’s intention to leave Microsoft (for Zynga, ultimately, but I believe that other roles were considered) has been around for months. His bosses – including, ultimately, Steve Ballmer, who may have had a direct hand in choreographing this move – will have been informed of Mattrick’s plans for some time and will have been working behind the scenes to figure out a succession plan for the Xbox division. What has changed, I believe, is the timing.”

Microsoft’s head of Interactive Entertainment Business, Don Mattrick, is taking over the reins at embattled social gaming giant Zynga. It’s an interesting departure and the timing is already getting tongues wagging; Rob Fahey tries to take a more measured look at the change.