Xbox’s Don Mattrick leaves Microsoft to become CEO of Zynga

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By on July 2, 2013 at 8:21 am

Following his handling of one of Microsoft’s biggest PR nightmares in recent history, Don Mattrick has now left the company to take up a new full-time position as the CEO of social and Facebook game developers Zynga.

In a company-wide email, Microsoft’s Steve “I LOVE THIS COMPANYYYYY” Ballmer praised Mattrick for “setting us on a path to completely redefine the entertainment industry”, and rattled off the names of a bunch of Microsoft products that everybody in the company presumably already knew about.

Meanwhile over at Zynga, former CEO Mark Pincus has stepped down to make way for Mattrick, who he claimed could do a better job as CEO than he could and was thus obliged to bring on board. Mattrick has made no comment but it’s safe to assume he’s probably pretty happy.

Source: SiliconEra (thanks SubW00fer)

20 comments (Leave your own)

Some how

one of Microsoft’s biggest PR nightmares

still seems like an understatement. Coming out of the gate yelling DRM and TV wasn’t the best thing to do.

It’s interesting because obviously the majority of people who buy the xbox do so for Netflix or COD so obviously they come out of the gate with stuff to support that majority but they present said material to game journalists at a gaming expo that most (see: none) of their core audience would attend and are surprised at the backlash.

This smells like one of those I decided to leave the company of my own volition scenarios.

Why Zynga though? Aren’t they, like, super dodgy?

 

Hey look, its the guy that told the world not to buy their new product. Guess he can’t make the same comment at Zynga, so he should be pretty safe.

 

^ If not they’re going to be, wonder if Zynga will suffer or succeed with Don at the helm. Zynga’s on shaky ground atm aren’t they?

 

Good riddance to Mark Pincus to be honest. He is by-far one of the most dodgiest CEO’s in the gaming industry following all the crap Zynga admitted.

…and if we’re lucky, Don will drive Zynga into the ground. :D

 

Well looky here, he destroy’s the XBone, lets hope he does the same for Zynga :D

 

This is all part of the Microsoft reorg work that is currently happening – expect more changes to follow! Don Mattrick was a goose though, MS did well to move him along…

I’d hardly say XB1 is “destroyed” though, it’s still going to ship millions of units and probably outsell PS4 (this is coming from a guy who has bought three PS3s over the years). Whilst the services of XB1 is limited for Australians, its functionality to Americans is quite attractive. To be honest, there are more people with cable than there are gamers, many more, that’s where MS is trying to extend itself – inclusive of, but also beyond, gamers.

Now the DRM will fallback to the publishers (like PS4) instead of having one tidy system that just needed some sensible tweaks – hopefully there’s still some time for MS to meet gamers halfway rather than giving us the same thing from 2005 again.

Anyway, I digress.

 
Nasty Wet Smear

Russacky: Why Zynga though? Aren’t they, like, super dodgy?

Don Mattrick

super dodgy?

Eh?… Ehhhh? You see the connection? He should feel right at home.

 
jerichosainte

What a coward. It really shows the depth of his character leaving the ship that he sunk!

 

nastywetsmear: Eh?… Ehhhh? You see the connection? He should feel right at home.

Now you made it obvious. We could both be arrested by the Zynga version of the Gestapo. They’re basically the same as the real Gestapo except their uniforms are less impressive and they speak in plain English so their oppression is understood by a broader audience.

 

That’s the perfect place for him to be.

 
Nasty Wet Smear

Russacky: Now you made it obvious. We could both be arrested by the Zynga version of the Gestapo. They’re basically the same as the real Gestapo except their uniforms are less impressive and they speak in plain English so their oppression is understood by a broader audience.

Well, that does sound simple to be abused by and easy to access. Perfect! Can I be taken against my will by them through a simple Facebook app?

 

It amazes me that you can be this incompetent as a CEO (don’t buy our product the old one is just as good !)
And then jump straight to another gig as CEO, the business world is seriously messed up.

 

I think Don Mattrick is extremely misunderstood. He’s trying to make the world a better place by destroying terrible companies. Microsoft found out his scheme and got rid of him, now he’s off to destroy Zynga. No more fucking Poker.

 

what’s wrong with XBone? I’m going to buy one, maybe 2. looks great. i wish they hadn’t back flipped on their future-esque-use of drm though, it sounded interesting. I just wonder what features it will have that appeal more to australians. The game lineup of xbone looks impressive (for me at least) ryse and dead rising 3 look excellent, and the new controller looks pretty sharp. PS4 looks craptacular, just like a ps3 only with an ugly GUI and updated GFX. At least microsoft is thinking of the future.

 

sirgriggles,

Only problem is now they’ve back flipped on their futureproofing plans because no one wanted them (or at least, were told why they wanted them). Xbox could have sold pretty well in its initial state if they marketed the features better (and maybe got rid of the Kinect). I mean, the Xbox One was basically moving towards Steam in a console, and PC users have been (relatively) fine with steam for years.

TL;DR. PR let the Xbox One down, got it changed, and now the PR guy isn’t with the company anymore.

 
Nasty Wet Smear

Yeah, it was just like Steam… If Steam spat radioactive pubic lice out of your DVD drive into your eyeballs and screamed that it hated you and you were worthless. You know, like evil Steam. Maybe a little facial hair it could twirl?

 

nastywetsmear,

Way to stereotype those that have remarkable facial hair! Maybe if they were wearing a cowboy hat and cowboy boots, kickin’ it at some mid west saloon chewing tobacco. Or laughing maniacally next to some damsel tied to the tracks as the sound of the oncoming train is heard in the not too far distance.

In all seriousness though, digital distribution and account tied software are great. I love that I can install and uninstall games at my leisure without having to stockpile CDs and DVDs, or having to go through a dozen folders to find the “Play game!” exe. New PC or Hard Drive? Easy! Install the steam client and you can start getting your game collection back together in a few clicks!

I can’t speak for the Xbox 360, but PS3/Vita gives you a download list, which also gets filled with DLC, random avatar icons and demos and whatever else you download. If they had an organized system akin to Steam (probably better to compare it to “Big Picture”) I’d be sold. Sorting through the list or navigating through the store again to redownload is a pain, especially when it gets clogged with other stuff (being able to delete stuff from the list would be great).

 
Nasty Wet Smear

Way to stereotype those that have remarkable facial hair!

I’m… I’m sorry. :( I’m sorry evil twins and railroad tying evil doers of the world. I shouldn’t lump you all into the same box as people who like Jazz.

 

while i hate the ideology of exclusives, the xbones got some pretty PHAT ones, and some are brand new ip to boot. if u love AAA games, ( and i do, i know how the rest of u feel)… the next gen is looking pretty sweet. but, its all style n no substance n i know this, i choose to be mundane n ‘peasant’ after years of isolating elitism.

 

Yeah! Let’s send this guy to EA after he’s done putting Zynga into the ground as well, lol.

It’s scary though, that once you’re at that level, you can completely and utterly fuck everything up, then just waltz on over to the next CEO-level job at a different, massive company like nothing ever happened.

former CEO Mark Pincus has stepped down to make way for Mattrick, who he claimed could do a better job as CEO than he could and was thus obliged to bring on board

Investors say jump… you say?

 
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