BioShock Infinite devs jump ship to Microsoft

Reports and LinkedIn pages suggest that combat design director Clint Bundrick and artificial intelligence lead Don Norbury are the latest developers to depart Irrational Games.

Following reports in August that two of Irrational Games' top developers--director of product development Tim Gerritsen and 13-year studio veteran and former art director Nate Wells--had left the company, it now appears that the BioShock Infinite studio may have lost another two of its team members.

The BioShock Infinite team has lost another two developers.

According to Superannuation and Kotaku, Irrational Games combat design director Clint Bundrick and artificial intelligence lead Don Norbury had both left the studio earlier this month to join, as detailed by their individual LinkedIn accounts (here and here).

Following the departure of Gerritsen and Wells in August, Irrational announced that the original BioShock art director, Scott Sinclair, would fill Wells' role amid reports of multiplayer cancellations. Irrational later brought in Epic Games production director Rod Fergusson to help complete the game.

BioShock Infinite was announced in 2010, and was originally scheduled to be launched this month. In the run up to the 2012 Electronic Entertainment Expo--at which it was not present-- it was announced that the game would be delayed to February 2013.

When BioShock Infinite does ship, it will do so with great sales expectations. In August 2011, one analyst suggested that the game would be a significant financial boon for Take-Two, saying that it could ship 4.9 million copies.

BioShock Infinite is set in a chaos-plagued airborne metropolis called Columbia. Gamers assume the role of Booker DeWitt, a former member of the feared Pinkerton National Detective Agency, which was the nation's largest security company in the late 19th century.

For more on BioShock Infinite, check out GameSpot's previous coverage.

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Discussion

137 comments
CaptWaffle
CaptWaffle

This far into the development process I'm guessing it's a lot of polishing and bug squishing.  From everything I've seen my excitement level is still 100%.  I never, ever, ever buy new games.... intentionally stay one or two "major release cycles" down so that I can pick up my GOTY versions and $20 used games..... couldn't wait for Fallout: NV and not going to wait for Bioshock: Infinite.  (actually I believe the first Bioshock might have been the game previous to Fallout: NV that I bought new...)  Wish they'd polish up the system shock games and re-release them on console.  Introduce a whole generation of people to the greatness that was System Shock. 

TAIMAT0
TAIMAT0

i've started to have doubts about this title months ago ... so ambiguous .. feels no confident from the dev.s .. new trailer might save the day

lordshifu
lordshifu

With due respect someone please fire Miss Parker the Laura. Thumbs up guys if agree

slicedbread117
slicedbread117

I sure hope this game isn't effected by the losses. My most anticipated game for 2013 easily.

kennythomas26
kennythomas26

Lets hope this game is still going to be epic

wyan_
wyan_

Nothing is infinite.

Owner34
Owner34

Ugh this is a double edged sword because I want this game now but I don't want it to not be polished!

SavoyPrime
SavoyPrime

Wonder if everything is all well over there at Irrational. Sure have been people with important roles leaving the team.

Gamer_4_Fun
Gamer_4_Fun

Why are some people moving from irrational? They are a great studio :\

PlatinumPaladin
PlatinumPaladin

Not cool. Definitely seems like something's amiss at Irrational.

StJerK
StJerK

Makes me think that Irrational is not the best place to work at. So many top people are jumping ship right around the same time. Corporate must be involved.

nini200
nini200

Wow well get ready for them to work on Wonderbook.

diabolik_023
diabolik_023

damn... so PC gaming universe lost another great team... how much do you want to bet they will work on the new xbox platform making exclusive titles ?

Lotus-Edge
Lotus-Edge

Maybe M$ will start its own line of steampunk awesomeness....

aluccard
aluccard

Hopefully they are going to get working on reviving some of those Rare licenses they own.  One can dream...

Fartman7998
Fartman7998

Let's....finish...the...game.   Thanks.

Ortego13
Ortego13

I guess, it is better to wait and get a fine product than demand hasty game development and frustrate.

inaka_rob
inaka_rob

Bioshock games are great! But I am sorry they cant hold a candle to the system shock games. Its too bad things went down hill after system shock 2, and the 3rd game never left the drawing board. Glad it was resurrected as bio shock. But still hoping to see system shock 3

XxTheEvilxX
XxTheEvilxX

Here's to hoping this game is still what we all hope it to be. I have to admit, I am slightly worried given the delay coupled with quite a few devs departing the project. This has been year of disappointments. In my opinion, the following games disappointed significantly from their previous incarnations: Resident Evil 6, Ninja Gaiden 3, Silent Hill Downpour, NCAA Football 13, and more.

 

Now, that is just my opinion. I feel many of these games turned out to be a disappointment given my experience with them, fan reaction on this site, and various reviews I read. 2012 seems to be the year of disappointment for many top titles. Let's hope 2013 brings in some better competition. With a new Halo, Bioshock, Metal Gear, Dead Space, and others on the way, it could be a fun year. Though I will say, one of my favorite releases this year is Borderlands 2. Guns and Loot. Works for me.

Cryptic_Shadow
Cryptic_Shadow

No loss.  The Bioshock Infinite project looks brilliant and the series will prevail with new replacements.  The video game industry is pretty versatile; there is lots of talent out there.

Joeguy00
Joeguy00

Watching the extended gameplay trailers on YouTube the game looks damn fine to me and I don't have any worries about its quality, my pre-order will stay put. Its a BioShock game, its belongs in my Steam library!

TTDog
TTDog

Time to consider cancelling my pre-order... this is starting to sound more and more like a car crash waiting to happen.

EliOli
EliOli

This does not bode well.  I'll bet we see this game delayed again.  Seems there's a lot of turmoil going on in the ranks. 

Thumbler76
Thumbler76

what the hell is going on in Bioshock infinite's developers crew?

TigusVidiks
TigusVidiks

Any other title and people would be talking already about possible development problems or eminent cancelation.

Acid_Kenobi
Acid_Kenobi

Personally I think its brilliant.. Dev's, designers, artists, combat engineers and everyone in between should all be freelance, and studios made up on the fly for single games.

 

For example,.. Names like Cliffy B, arguably, have the massive potential to pull the best people together for the chance of a lifetime..

 

Thats the kind of games I want.

chronocommander
chronocommander

 @StJerK The creator of Bioshock, Ken Levine, was forced to relinquish control of the team and project on the first Bioshock because of personal differences and he's now in charge of Infinite after another team involving Bioshock 1 devs if I remember correctly delivered Bioshock 2. That people are jumping ship again shows that there must be some problem at top level management and I don't think the two are unrelated.

nini200
nini200

 @aluccard I double what was said to Lotus-Edge, "and then you woke up".

nini200
nini200

 @Fartman7998 That's a skill that has long been lost thanks to things such as DLC.

Reaverking
Reaverking

 @TTDog They are having trouble making the game fun. That demo 2 years ago was the funnest part of the game. At least thats what one of the testers for the game said a few months back.

inaka_rob
inaka_rob

@TTDog Why?! For all you know they were offered a ton of money to change jobs. Happens a zillion times a day in every sector of the world. You think becuse someone leaves one company it means they were running from a sinking ship. I am a teacher. I love my job. I love my students and my school. But if the school across the street offered me 5k more a year I would leave. Doesn't mean I leaving a bad school. Got to put food on the table and move up in the world.

larkin-54
larkin-54

 @Acid_Kenobi that would end in a jumbled mess of bad code, incompatible styles and studios with no heart to them. Places like bungie where people stick around for decades create an atmosphere and culture all their own and  style that suits the people who work there 

lordshifu
lordshifu

 @96augment aww aint that a cute question....... cause she can't even understand the easy mechanics of indie games where she has to only save an ovum from massive attacks of sperm. She throws fits in games where she has to find a poster in dark forests. N now she is here spoiling the AAA games. PLEASE LORD NOT HER. I beg gamespot not her. Get Tom McSHea, Get Jane Douglas, Zorine, Kevin anyone. But not her. I'll seriously shoot myself in the brains if she makes Bioshock infinity review or talks any shit about other upcoming AAA games

TTDog
TTDog

@inaka_rob: If its just 1 or 2 then fine... but they've lost too many people, and there have been more tales of dischord and the game not living upto the footage shown for it to be just a case to think they were off for more money. And keep in mind they're working on one of next years biggest titles that will be seen by way more people because of the Bioshock name than most other titles... so many leaving is not a good sign.

Acid_Kenobi
Acid_Kenobi

 @larkin-54 How can U even say that and honestly believe it?? new studios are struck up, and lots more close, all the time. 'Places like Bungie' exist because they milk their cash cow.. No risks means no innovation and no fewer new IP's.

lordshifu
lordshifu

 @96augment OH GOD! okies :) don't worry, gather more people who are having problem with this understanding thing n we can have a group discussion over skype cause i really don't i've so much time on explaining something utterly unimportant that doesn't even matter hardly to our lives.

96augment
96augment

 @lordshifu You said that she is spoiling AAA games. That she doesn't understand the beauty involved in Bioshock And according to you, she lacks the gamer instinct to get extra information. I read all your posts and I still don't understand why you feel that way about her.

lordshifu
lordshifu

 @96augment you should give another read through of what i said earlier and cogitate a bit...... n then you'll get all the answers you need...... 

96augment
96augment

 @lordshifu   What are the subtle points that she is missing? Why doesn't she have that "gamer instinct"? 

edgewalker16
edgewalker16

 @lordshifu  @96augment Read that last post by you, specifically the last sentence.  I'd flag that kind of derogatory remark irregardless of who said it or in what context.  Trust me when I say that you aren't special.

lordshifu
lordshifu

 @edgewalker16  @96augment To every guys here...... I take it you are all luara sympathizers cause I thought I was explaining something to peeps who cares about game reporting from guys who actually has a feel for the game and understands the beauty involved. She maybe doing a great job but she might miss the subtle point or to touch on those lines which actually invigorates the anticipation and excitement for the game. But again I don't care nemore.......... n guys if you have probs for me having probs with laura just get the get your shit out on your nagging wife who is too tired of you....... its just an earnest suggestion made she shouldn't be in this part of job. All I'm saying she just doesnt have that gamer instinct which is essential when you want to dig out the extra info.DO U UNDERSTAND DOGS n FAGS chewing my head!!??

edgewalker16
edgewalker16

 @lordshifu  @96augment How does this article have ANYTHING to do with indie game mechanics?  Oh, I get it...you're pissed because something unfavorable is actually being said about Bioshock: Infinite.  Too.  Damn.  Bad.  It's not Laura's fault that several staff members have jumped ship.  Get your head out of your ass.

picho86
picho86

 @lordshifu  @96augment What the fark is your problem? I am very rarely this blunt, but you are a disgusting person.

96augment
96augment

 @lordshifu Uh, how is she spoiling Bioshock Infinite? She is just reporting news.