Microsoft's games head resigns

— 11:55 AM on January 14, 2004

Ed Fries, the head of Microsoft's games division, has unexpectedly resigned from his position at the helm of the Xbox.

Fries was a key component of Microsoft's (MSFT: Research, Estimates) success in the gaming industry. An 18 year veteran of Microsoft, he took over the fledgling games division in 1995. At that time, Microsoft Games consisted of little more than the company's popular Flight Simulator program for the PC. In subsequent years, he was actively involved in the development and launch of the Xbox gaming system and oversaw the acquisition of several major game developers, including Bungie Software (which is responsible for "Halo", the Xbox's most successful title) and Rare.
Fries apparently plans to stay in the gaming industry, but hasn't yet revealed where he'll end up.

In other console news, Infinium Labs' vaporware Phantom console will supposedly "come to life" on March 31 of this year. The elusive console will apparently be powered by an Athlon XP 3200+ processor, nForce2 400 chipset, and NV36 graphics chip. I'll believe it when I see it.

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