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Jobs Roundup: November 2023 | Rockstar veterans join Dan Houser's new studio

Marc Merrill is named chief product officer at Riot Games, Michael Unsworth and Lazlow Jones now at Absurd Ventures

It can be difficult keeping track of the various comings and goings in the games industry, which is why we compile them in semi-regular round-ups.

If you have new appointments or transitions in your company that belong here, please send the names of the appointees, new role and company, and prior role and company to

Marc Merrill

Marc Merrill | Chief product officer, Riot Games

Riot Games has announced that Marc Merill has been named chief product officer.

The co-founder and past co-CEO will oversee the overall product strategy of gameplay, esports, and entertainment across the firm’s titles.

Merill previously served as president of games at Riot.

"In this next chapter for Riot, our goal is to double-down on our mission for players and to continue our evolution from delivering games as a service to bringing games as an experience to players,” said CEO Dylan Jadeja.

Michael Unsworth and Lazlow Jones | Absurd Ventures

Two Rockstar veterans have joined Dan Houser at his new studio Absurd Ventures.

As spotted by BeGeek (via Eurogamer), the Grand Theft Auto studio's former vice president of writing Michael Unsworth joined the team last month, ending more than 16 years at Rockstar. Unsworth co-wrote both Red Dead Redemption games, and contributed to GTA 4, 5 and LA Noire.

According to his LinkedIn profile, he has taken on the role of head of story and creative management.

Meanwhile, Lazlow Jones – previously writer, director and producer at Rockstar, and known to GTA fans as an in-game radio DJ – also joined the team back in June, after almost 20 years at the Grand Theft Auto studio.

He has taking on the role of executive producer, and also lists himself as a founding member of the new company.

Absurd Ventures was officially announced in June 2023, three years after Rockstar co-founder Dan Houser left the company.

Left to right, Jo Lammert, Clint Brewer

Blumhouse Games expands with duo appointments

Blumhouse Games has added two new hires, Jo Lammert and Clint Brewer.

Lammert will serve as production lead, and Brewer will step into the position of technical director.

Before this new role, Lammert was director of release management at Private Division. She was with the games firm for five years.

Prior to being hired, Brewer was senior expert core engineer at Sledgehammer Games, where he had a three-year stint. He brings over 20 years of experience in the games industry.

"Throughout my career I've been passionate about helping game developers bring their creative visions to life, and it's an honor to work with so many amazing talents doing just that in indie-scoped horror at Blumhouse Games," said Lammert.

"I've wanted to work directly in the horror industry for a long time," said Brewer. "I've got a lot of respect for what Blumhouse has done for horror, and when Zach and Don formed Blumhouse Games, it felt like a dream come true."

Bonnie Jean Mah

Bonnie Jean Mah | Narrative director, Sony

Former Gears of War narrative director Bonnie Jean Mah has joined Sony's Santa Monica Studio in the same role.

It is currently unknown what project Mah will be working on.

Mah joined the games industry in 2008 as a writer and narrative designer on the Warhammer 40,000 franchise. She previously worked in film and television.

She moved to The Coalition in 2014, becoming franchise narrative manager for Gears of War. She was a narrative producer on Gears of War 4 and narrative designer on Gears of War 5.

Mah left The Coalition to join Relic Entertainment in 2017 as narrative lead and lead writer on Age of Empires 4, before returning to become the franchise narrative director for the Gears of War IP.

In 2022, she joined TiMi Montreal as narrative director on an unannounced open world RPG.

Regarding her new role, Mah said: "I'm beyond thrilled to be working with this team and studio."

Joel Edström

Joel Edström | Head of platform strategy, The Gang

Game studio The Gang has named Joel Edström its new platform strategy head.

He will oversee expanding business operations in gaming and growing its presence in user-generated content.

Edström brings with him experience that includes a six-year stint as head of production at Viaplay Studios Animation. He also served in the role of creative sales for Modern Times Group; Edström worked at the firm for four years.

He also had a four stint as a board member at Xenter Botkyrka.

"I am excited to lead the charge in expanding The Gang's footprint, acquiring valuable insights, and maximizing the creative potential of new platforms. Through delivering the best experiences to clients, The Gang has established itself as a leader in the industry," said Edström.

Donald Mustard

Donald Mustard | AGBO partner

Former Epic Games chief creative officer Donald Mustard has joined AGBO, the production firm of Avengers: Endgame film directors Anthony and Joe Russo.

Mustard's new role is listed as a partner, and it is currently unknown what new projects he will be working on.

The news comes months after he announced his retirement from Epic Games. His game credits include Fortnite, Shadow Complex, and the Infinity Blade series.

Mustard founded Chair Entertainment in 2005 and served as its creative director. It was then acquired by Epic in 2008. He held various roles over the years, such as worldwide creative director at Epic, as the company transitioned to games as a service business model.

Alan Hartman

Alan Hartman | Head of Xbox Game Studios

Microsoft has appointed Alan Hartman as head of Xbox Game Studios.

Before this, he was vice president of Turn 10 Studios. Hartman has been at Microsoft for more than 15 years.

His game credits include Forza Horizon 5, Sea of Thieves, and Forza Street.

In the news of his announcement, he said, "Thrilled to be representing such an elite set of game creators in my new role leading Xbox Game Studios!"

Charles Ju

Charles Ju | Head of gaming, Spatial

Spatial has announced that it has appointed Charles Ju as head of gaming.

Before this role, he founded Sessions's music platform and worked as his CEO. He established both titles and worked as chief product officer.

His game credits include mobile titles Battle Camp and Beat Fever.

"Spatial is leveraging the vast Unity community and offering monetization options that make it a truly viable option for any developer," said Ju.

"Spatial's SDK lets developers deliver beautiful gaming experiences without the friction. I’m hugely excited to be part of the future of web-based gaming."

Craig Chapple

Craig Chapple | Head of content,

Steel Media has announced that Craig Chapple has been appointed as head of content at

Chapple brings a career of more than 12 years working within the games industry. His work history includes a three-year stint as EMEA mobile insights strategist at Sensor Tower.

In the past, he served as senior editor at and was with the publication for three years before his departure.

Regarding his appointment, Chapple said, "I'm joining as head of content!"

"I'm excited to be fully back into the world of journalism and working with the talented team here to provide breaking news, the big interviews, and insightful analyses. It's always been a passion of mine, and I'm delighted to be back in the fray."

Shannon Gerritzen

Shannon Gerritzen | Head of publishing, IllFonic

Shannon Gerritzen has been promoted to head of publishing at IllFonic.

She previously served as vice president of marketing and communications at the game publisher.

Gerritzen's career includes a two-year stint as director of communications and marketing at Hidden Path Entertainment. She also served as vice president of communications at UMG Gaming.

"I've leaned on my past experiences in PR and events to shape how I look at marketing a game. I now look forward to growing the publishing department. I want to bring games and IPs to IllFonic that we are fans of," said Gerritzen in the announcement.

Shannon Liao

Shannon Liao | Deputy gaming editor, Inverse

Inverse has hired career journalist Shannon Liao as its new deputy gaming editor.

Liao's work history includes covering business and the games industry on various websites.

She served as a tech reporter at The Verge; she was with the site for two years. Liao had a one-year stint as a CNN business writer. She also worked as a staff writer at The Washington Post's gaming vertical Launcher.

In the announcement of her hiring on social media, she said, "After a long search and many rough days, I'm so excited to announce that I'll be starting full-time this week as deputy gaming editor at Inverse, based in New York!"

Hanneke Faber

Hanneke Faber | CEO, Logitech

Logitech has named Hanneke Faber as its new CEO; her new position will be effective on December 1.

Faber has a decades-long career as a business executive across different firms and market sectors.

She worked as chief e-commerce and innovation officer at Ahold Delhaize; she was at the company for four years. Faber's last role was president of global nutrition at Unilever.

Said Faber, "I cannot think of a more exciting time to be a part of the company's future growth. Emerging technologies expand opportunities across hybrid work, video conferencing, gaming, and streaming for Logitech and our users."

Pim Holfve

Pim Holfve | CEO, Flashbulb Games

Flashbulb Games has hired Pim Holfve as its new CEO, as company co-founder Rune Dittmer will step down from the position.

Holfve previously served as CEO at entertainment firm Avalanche Studios, where he worked for nine years.

He also was a board member at various companies, such as Niro Games and Propellerhead Software.

"I couldn't be happier and honored to join such a gem of a studio", added Holfve.

"Over the years, I've had the great fortune to get to know Flashbulb, and what they have achieved so far is nothing short of amazing. I really look forward to taking this to the next level with this amazingly talented team."

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Jeffrey Rousseau avatar
Jeffrey Rousseau: Jeffrey joined in March 2021. Based in Florida, his work focused on the intersectionality of games and media. He enjoys reading, podcasts, staying informed, and learning how people are tackling issues.
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