Halo Dev Certain Affinity Appoints Blizzard Veteran As President And COO

Back in January, we reported that Certain Affinity was apparently working on two projects, one was something along the lines of Monster Hunter, while the other was a battle royale for Halo Infinite. We've not heard any official news about either of these projects yet, it appears that the studio is expanding from being just a supporting function to creating its very own games. Perhaps with that in mind, the studio has appointed Paul Sams as president and COO.

Sams was a 20-year veteran at Blizzard, where he rose up the ranks to COO, but most recently, he was the CEO of Ready at Dawn, the studio behind The Order: 1886 and Lone Echo. At Certain Affinity, Sams will be at the helm as the studio works towards its aim of becoming a premier developer, while also maintaining its reputation of being a go-to supporting dev for triple-A studios (thanks, VGC). He had been affiliated with the studio in an advisory role before this, however, with its newfound ambitions, Certain Affinity decided to bring him on board full-time.

“I am blown away by what CA has accomplished over the years," said Sams. "When I first saw their portfolio of releases I was amazed, and it has only gotten stronger since, including on games the world hasn’t yet seen. Max, Mojdeh, and the rest of the company’s leadership and highly talented team have built an amazingly healthy, supportive, no nonsense culture that thrives on getting work done, and done well."

He also mentioned that the studio will be expanding in lieu of its new goals. "Austin is our headquarters and continues to be the home of a majority of our staff. We will continue growing here and continue investing in this city and community, while also accelerating our expansion through our fully-integrated development studio in Toronto and through continued expansion of remote work into new states and territories."

The reason why speculation suggests that Certain Affinity's Halo project is a battle royale, is because of its codename, Tatanka. Oldschool wrestling fans will remember Tatanka as the wrestler who won one of the most iconic matches in WWE – then WWF – history, a 40-man battle royale match called Bashed in the USA in May 1992.

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