Amazon Games studio head Mike Frazzini, who played a huge role in founding the company, has resigned to “focus on his family.”
As Bloomberg reported, Frazzini announced to his staff on Friday, March 25 that he was leaving the studio that helped bring games like New World and Lost Ark to life.
“Mike was with Amazon Games from the beginning, and his leadership and perseverance helped build the games business from the ground up,” Amazon spokesman Ryan Jones said in a statement. “Our recent successes with New World and Lost Ark are a result of the long-term, customer-centric vision for games he helped build. We are very grateful for all his contributions and wish Mike the very best.”
While New World and Lost Ark have been positively received by many, Amazon Games hasn’t had the smoothest development over the years.
2019’s The Grand Tour Game was Amazon Game Studios’ first console release, but was pulled from stores within a year. Crucible was the next game to be officially released by the studio, but it was quickly put back into closed beta after launch and finally retired in November 2020.
Additionally, two other projects — known as Intensity and Nova — never saw the light of day after teams tried and failed to create games inspired by Fortnite and League of Legends, respectively.
This all happened despite Amazon spending nearly $500 million annually to operate its Amazon Games division.
Frazzini began his career in the books division of Amazon.com in 2004, where he “endeared himself to Jeff Bezos as an executive there.” When he was brought up to found Amazon Game Studios, he had never developed a game before.
A previous report also said that Frazzini would ignore the advice of the veteran developers he brought in and, although he frequently told staff that every Amazon game should be a “billion-dollar franchise,” understaffed projects.
A former Amazon Game Studios executive spoke to Bloomberg and said his lack of prior gaming experience was a disadvantage for the company. Amazon is well known that those who are successful in one category should have no problem doing the same in another. Unfortunately, “unit staff felt that he underestimated the complexity of the medium”.
Do you have a tip for us? Would you like to discuss a possible story? Please send an email to email@example.com.
Adam Bankhurst is a news writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter @AdamBankhurst and further Pull out.
https://www.ign.com/articles/amazon-games-studio-head-mike-frazzini-has-stepped-down-to-focus-on-his-family Amazon Games Studio boss Mike Frazzini has resigned to focus on his family