Former Blizzard President Gives Support To Phil Spencer Amidst Xbox Negativity

Today's news that Xbox is shutting multiple Bethesda studios including Arkane Austin and Tango Gameworks undoubtedly hasn't gone down well, and Xbox boss Phil Spencer has come under fire on social media as a result.

In response, former Blizzard president Mike Ybarra shared a message of support for Spencer on Twitter earlier this afternoon, stating that despite understanding the "anger" and "confusion", he believes Phil will be hurting as well.

"I see a lot of shots at Phil over today's Xbox announcements. I get it. But knowing him as a human, I know this hurts him as much as anyone else. I can't speak for all of the leadership there, but I do know him and I do know what he is likely going through.

I'm not trying to defend the decisions. I think we all get ourselves into situations that are tough and unexpected (certainly I have). It's part of the job, as is the accountability for the outcomes. But he's a good human and he cares deeply for the creative process and developers. That's my first hand experience in working closely with him for 8+ years and knowing him for 24+.

I 100% understand the anger and confusion, and I feel deeply sorry for those teams impacted today and over the last few months. I didn't agree with every decision he made at Xbox, and I think that was pretty clear, but I do believe in his product leadership and I know how hard these decisions can be.

Xbox could have a very bright future. I hope they are able to realizes it and all of the teams have an incredible experience together. It's certainly a tough time that needs great clarity into what the plan ahead is and how gamers everywhere can be excited for it."

Ybarra's comments here also came under a lot of fire for focusing on Spencer's woes rather than the developers who have lost their jobs today, which prompted Ybarra to clarify his reasoning for the post:

"He's accountable for where Xbox is yes, but I won't stand silent when people personally attack friends of mine."

Ultimately, this has been a sad situation all around, and we're sure Ybarra's statement wasn't intended to disrespect anyone who's been directly affected by today's news - nevertheless, it's clearly caused some controversy on Twitter.

At the time of writing, we still haven't heard from Phil Spencer himself about today's news, which is a surprise considering it's been many hours since the report first dropped. Hopefully we'll get something in the near future...