Ever since Bungie’s long-term deal with Activision, those who had been following the company’s work have wondered if this was the same old Bungie they’d grown to love. Now those discussions will undoubtedly pop up again, as it seems another longtime member of the studio is saying goodbye.
Bungie announced in a statement released yesterday that Harold Ryan, who has been with the company for over 15 years, will be stepping down as president. Company COO Pete Parsons will be leading the company going forward, but will do so as CEO. In the announcement, Parsons took a moment to share a few words.
“I want to personally thank Harold for his friendship, passion, hard work, and dedication in helping make Bungie the great company it is today,” Parsons said. “As a team, we celebrated many victories and weathered many storms.”
With the sequel to Destiny reportedly delayed and fans questioning Bungie’s recent decision to add microtransactions to the game, this could be a rocky time for the studio. Parsons addressed some of these concerns directly.
“To the players of Destiny, I want you to know that my number one priority, and Bungie’s, is and always has been to deliver great games that we can all share together,” Parsons said. “I believe that Destiny is a one-of-a-kind experience. I also believe you have yet to see our studio’s best work. My new role here at the studio will be entirely focused on fulfilling that promise.”
From the wording of the statement, it seems that Parsons’ first goal will be to make sure players are happy enough with the state of Destiny that they don’t lose patience waiting for the sequel. The recent changes to matchmaking to reduce lag, for example, could be part of this.
Ryan had been with Bungie since 2000, leading the studio through the development of its most popular games. There is no word on what he plans to do next, but it certainly seems that he deserves a break.