The rumours around the floor of GDC suggest that Microsoft’s VP of Interactive Entertainment, Phil Harrison, is about to leave the company. Gamesindustry.biz (opens in new tab) reports that several sources have been talking openly about the news, though Microsoft is yet to make an official announcement.
Harrison was hired by former Microsoft head-honcho, Don Mattrick, in 2012. In contrast to his front-and-centre role with Sony and the PlayStation brand, Harrison hasn’t had as much time in the limelight with Xbox. Instead, Phil Spencer became the spokesperson for Xbox One after Mattrick left for Zynga. While it’ll unlikely ever be officially confirmed, Gamesindustry.biz close out their article by stating a belief that ‘Harrison grew frustrated when Mattrick’s departure and Spencer’s subsequent promotion did not result in him moving up the corporate ladder’.
The reports potentially gain more weight when you consider that Lift Studios – founded by Harrison – is set to be merged into Microsoft’s Soho Studios, resulting in a number of redundancies. Again, conjecture, but possibly another reason for Harrison’s supposed departure, should it be happening.
If it all turns out to be true, it’ll be anyone’s guess as to where big Phil will end up next. Maybe Harrison should aim for the console hat-trick and rock up at Nintendo on Monday morning.
We’ll update this story as and when Microsoft drop the official truth bombs.