Halo Infinite lead designer Jerry Hook is leaving 343 Industries. The games industry veteran announced his departure on Twitter, noting that he would also be ending a long journey with Microsoft that dates all the way back to 2003.
Hook also credited the colleagues he's worked alongside for the last two decades, calling them "some of the most passionate and driven people in the industry, that have impacted millions of players around the world."
The departure of Hook is another of many high-profile departures that have followed Halo Infinite throughout its development lifespan. In March, multiplayer lead Matthew Witt left 343 Industries, and a large amount of senior talent churned in and out of the company during Halo Infinite's development.
Hook's departure caps off an exceptionally notable career for a developer who helped create Xbox Live, stepped away from Microsoft to join Halo: Combat Evolved developer Bungie in the development of Destiny, and returned to Microsoft to help 343 Industries develop the boundary-pushing design of Halo Infinite.
His Halo credits also include Halo 4, Halo 5: Guardians, Halo: The Master Chief Collection. He also worked on a number of "second screen" experiences for the Halo franchise such as the Waypoint app, and a map-tracking app for Halo: Reach.
At Bungie, Hook led development on expansions for Destiny before pivoting to the business development and monetization side of the company.
The Seattle solar system of Microsoft, Bungie, and 343 Industries game developers has seen several developers jump from company to company, stepping away from the Halo franchise before returning to it in a different capacity. Hook's departure is an interesting variation on this pattern, because his first experiences with Microsoft was launching the Xbox Live network on Xbox 360. Halo 2's performance on that console is often credited with driving the success of Microsoft's nascent online services.
Hook hasn't indicated if he is joining another games company or taking a well-earned retirement. Wherever he goes, a piece of the Halo legacy definitely follows him.