Halo Infinite studio director Chris Lee has left the project

Chris Lee
(Image credit: Chris Lee (LinkedIn))

Halo Infinite project director Chris Lee is no longer working on the game. Lee confirmed with Bloomberg that he has "stepped back from Infinite," and is now looking ahead to other opportunities.

"I believe in the team and am confident they will deliver a great game and now is a good time for me to step away," Lee said.

Interestingly, while Lee is off of Halo Infinite, he's apparently still with 343 Industries, where he's held the role of partner studio head since 2016. "Chris Lee remains a Microsoft employee and while he has stepped back from Halo Infinite right now, we appreciate all he has done for the project to date," a Microsoft rep told the site.

Lee's departure is the latest of a few recent surprises in the development of Halo Infinite. Former creative director Tim Longo left the studio in August 2019 in a shakeup that also saw executive producer Mary Olson moved to the role of lead producer on the Halo Infinite campaign team. Microsoft actually cited Lee's presence as a stabilizing influence following Longo's departure, saying in statement that "the overall creative vision and production of the game remains led by Chris Lee, studio head of Halo Infinite."

Olson herself left 343 a couple months later, in October 2019, prompting the studio to reassure fans that there was nothing to worry about—"There is no creative dilemma inside the studio, and there's no writing on the walls," community manager John Junyszek said in a Reddit post. Related or not, Halo Infinite made an underwhelming showing at the Xbox Showcase in July, and was then delayed to 2021 the following month. A full release date still hasn't been set.

I've reached out to Microsoft for more information on Lee's departure and will update this article if I receive a reply.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.