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Veteran Halo developer joins Netflix to make an original AAA game

Staten previously worked for Microsoft and Bungie, developing Halo and Destiny.
halo 3 game joseph staten

Game developer Joseph Staten, who previously worked for Microsoft and Bungie developing blockbuster games including Halo and Destiny, has joined Netflix Games as a creative director on an upcoming, original AAA game from the studio.

The title is being described as multiplatform, but no further details are available as of writing. Whatever Netflix Games is working on is presumably big, given the involvement of Staten and his blockbuster game development experience – but we’ll have to stay tuned to see what’s brewing.

‘In my work life, there’s nothing I love more than collaborating with others to build worlds filled with iconic characters, deep mysteries, and endless adventures,’ Staten said of his new gig on Twitter. ‘So today, I’m thrilled to announce that I’ve joined Netflix Games as Creative Director for a brand-new AAA multiplatform game and original IP. Let’s go!’

Staten’s acquisition is likely part of a major push from Netflix Games to boost its games output. In March, the company announced it intended to release around 40 games in 2023 alone, with a roster that includes original properties, and a ‘cream of the crop’ smorgasbord of indie hits.

Within this announcement, the company also revealed it had 16 games in full production at its in-house studios (Night School Games, Next Games, Boss Fight, Spry Fox, and others) and a further 70 games in development at external studios.

While the company is currently only focused on releasing games via its mobile apps, it has announced explorations into cloud-based gaming technologies, and has established an in-house development studio to develop a big-budget PC shooter game, led by former Overwatch producer Chako Sonny.

Read: Netflix to release 40+ games in 2023, on a monthly basis

With only hints towards ‘iconic characters, deep mysteries, and endless adventures’, where Staten’s project fits into these grand plans is currently unclear. That said, he’s a notable hand in the games industry with a long tenure and plentiful experience – which should serve Netflix well.

Staten previously worked with Bungie developing Halo and Halo 2, and was also a writer on Halo 3, in the years after Microsoft’s acquisition of the company. Staten later worked as writer and co-creative director on Destiny following the Microsoft and Bungie split, and then returned to Microsoft to serve as Xbox Game Studios Publishing senior creative director in 2014.

Notably, he left this role to work on Halo Infinite as head of creative in 2020, before departing the company in 2023. These experiences – with all their ups and downs – will no doubt serve Staten well as work on Netflix Games’ newest project kicks off.

Leah J. Williams is a gaming and entertainment journalist who's spent years writing about the games industry, her love for The Sims 2 on Nintendo DS and every piece of weird history she knows. You can find her tweeting @legenette most days.