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Xbox's Matt Booty suggests leadership change was a factor in Tango Gameworks closure

Exec confirms Hi-Fi Rush "did well for us" but factors behind previous success "may not all still be in place"

Xbox executive Matt Booty has offered more insight into the platform holder's decision to close Tango Gameworks, suggesting the studio's recent change of leadership was a key factor.

Speaking on Variety's Strictly Business podcast, spotted by Eurogamer, the head of Xbox Game Studios was asked whether Microsoft sought another buyer before closing the Japan-based developer.

Booty declined to share the "nitty gritty details" out of respect for the people affected by the studio's closure, but did note that "a lot of work went into delivering Hi-Fi Rush," which he described as a "great game" that "did well for us."

"I think the thing to be considered is that for us, it's as much a forward-looking situation as much as it is looking back at one certain game... There are a lot of things that go into success for a game," he said.

"What leadership do you have? What creative leadership do you have? Is the team the same team that shipped something successful previously?

"And we have to look at all of those things together and then ask ourselves, are we set up for success going forward? And while there may have been factors and situations that previously led to success, they may not all still be in place as you look at what you're doing going forward."

His comments seem to refer to the leadership changes at Tango Gameworks over the past year, following the departure of studio founder Shinji Mikami in 2023.

Tango Gameworks was one of four ZeniMax-owned studios that Microsoft closed in May, alongside Redfall developer Arkane Austin, Mighty Doom maker Alpha Dog Studios, and Roundhouse Games.

Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer was also questioned about the reasons for these closures on stage at IGN Live last month, who said that "hard decisions" needed to be made "to run a sustainable business."

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James Batchelor avatar
James Batchelor: James is Editor-in-Chief at, and has been a B2B journalist since 2006. He is author of The Best Non-Violent Video Games
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