Head of Amazon Game Studios Mike Frazzini steps down

“Mike was there at the beginning of Amazon Games, and his leadership and perseverance helped build the games business from the ground up”

Mike Frazzini has stepped down from his role as vice president of Amazon Game Studios to focus on his family.

Frazzini has worked with Amazon’s game division since 2009 and helped form the company’s game studio. He announced to his staff that he would be stepping down from the position on Friday. (via Bloomberg).

“Mike was there at the beginning of Amazon Games, and his leadership and perseverance helped build the games business from the ground up,” Amazon spokesperson Ryan Jones said in a statement. “Our recent successes with New World and Lost Ark are the result of the long-term, customer-focused vision for games he helped establish. We are very grateful for all his contributions, and wish Mike the very best.”

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Frazzini previously worked for Amazon in the books section, and some employees criticised him for his lack of experience in the video game sector. This could be the cause of some of Amazon Game Studios’ failures as it found its feet.

New World.
New World. Credit: Amazon Game Studios.

Several game prototypes were cancelled at the studio, with one releasing before being returned to an open beta state before cancellation. Amazon Game Studios finally released New World last year, which was received well at launch. Shortly after, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos said in a tweet “after many failures and setbacks in gaming we have a success… Don’t give up no matter how hard it gets.”

Details about New World’s next update were shared by Amazon Game Studios in a recent roundtable with developers. The team confirmed that a new, pirate-themed expedition was on the way called Barnacles And Black Powder. A “looking for group” tool will also be added to the MMO.

In other news, Wolverine and 343 Industries have teamed up to release a limited run of combat boots themed after Halo’s Master Chief. Only 117 pairs will be available.

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