Firaxis loses Civilization V lead

Principal programmer, designer Jon Shafer parts ways with Take-Two subsidiary after Mac edition hits store shelves.

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Well before Sid Meier's Civilization V made its PC debut in September, Take-Two Interactive had begun scaling down Firaxis' payroll, cutting 20 positions in July. Now, with the Mac edition of the game seeing release in November, Firaxis has parted ways with Civilization V's lead designer and principal programmer, Jon Shafer.

Shafer may not have been a Nebuchadnezzar II, but the team he led still created a top-rated game.
Shafer may not have been a Nebuchadnezzar II, but the team he led still created a top-rated game.

According to Shafer's LinkedIn profile, he exited the Take-Two subsidiary earlier this month, ending his current tenure with the stalwart gaming developer just shy of six years. Shafer's profile notes that his responsibilities on the title included "establishing a vision for the product, team/project direction, designing and engineering gameplay systems, research and documentation."

Take-Two additionally confirmed Shafer's departure for GameSpot. "We can confirm that Jon Shafer has left Firaxis Games," a 2K Games representative said. "We thank Jon for his contributions to the Civilization franchise and wish him the best of luck in the future."

Beyond Civilization V, Firaxis has been at work on Civilization Network, an online version of the game designed for Facebook. A multiplayer-centric installment, the Civilization Network sees Facebook friends sharing technology and coordinating strategy in battles. Players' friends will be able to participate in elections and help decide resource management, as well as assist in espionage or the construction of Wonders of the World.

For more on Civilization V, check out GameSpot's review of the game.

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