Microsoft appoints new Lionhead boss


John Needham has been appointed as Lionhead’s new studio head, Microsoft has confirmed.

Needham is a former CEO of Cryptic and Gazillion, and has also held senior positions at Sony Online Entertainment and as a board member at app specialist Quark Games. He will report into Phil Harrison, Microsoft Interactive Entertainment’s Division’s corporate vice president, EMEA.

“This is a historic time in our industry and I’m excited, and honoured, to be joining Lionhead and Microsoft Studios,” said Needham. “Our vision is focused on building innovative gaming services and triple-A experiences at Lionhead, and the rest of Microsoft Studios, which take advantage of Microsoft’s incredible hardware and software platforms.”

Phil Harrison also welcomed Needham to the role, adding: “It’s my pleasure to welcome John Needham to Microsoft Studios and Lionhead. He brings a wealth of proven executive leadership experience in the online gaming space to the company and I know he will confidently lead Lionhead towards an ambitious online future.”

Needham joins after Peter Molyneux’s departure from Lionhead and Microsoft in March last year.