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New Lionhead Head

Microsoft announces the appointment of John Needham a Studio Head of Lionhead, saying effectively immediately he will take responsibility for the day-to-day management of the studio, reporting into Phil Harrison, corporate veep of Microsoft’s Interactive Entertainment Business (EMEA). They offer his résumé, but no promises of games that will change the way we experience our families or how we breathe, so we're not sure he's ready to fill the hyperbolic shoes of departed founder Peter Molyneux just yet. "This is a historic time in our industry and I’m excited, and honoured, to be joining Lionhead and Microsoft Studios," says Needham. "Our vision is focused on building innovative gaming services and AAA experiences at Lionhead, and the rest of Microsoft Studios, which take advantage of Microsoft’s incredible hardware and software platforms. Personally, I can’t wait to get started." Here's the rundown on Needham's background:

John has been a prominent figure in the video game industry since 2001. As the former CEO of both Cryptic Studios and, most recently, Gazillion Entertainment, John brings over twelve years of leadership, business development and financial experience in the entertainment and online gaming industries to the role. John’s deep understanding of all aspects of the gaming industry, from subscription-based, massively multi-player to client-based console and free-to-play online, PC and mobile experiences, will be a huge benefit to Lionhead and European Studio operations more widely. John has also served as Senior Vice President of Business Development and Operations, and CFO at Sony Online Entertainment (SOE); as a board member of Quark Games (publisher of over fifty Top 25 apps, with in excess of 40 million installs); and is a former member of the Gamestop Digital Advisory Council (US).

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