No Man’s Sky designer Gareth Bourn has left Hello Games after spending nearly 6 years with the company, jumping ship following the controversial release of the space exploration game in order to pursue a career with the developers of Star Citizen’s single-player campaign, Foundry 42.
Bourn worked as a designer, level designer and QA manager for Hello Games, helping with development through the company’s previous Joe Danger series through to No Man’s Sky. The latter ranks among one of the most divisive games in history, with its heavily anticipated release accompanied by a slew of negative reviews and a heavily critical consumer reception. Even over three months removed from its launch, many continue to hold contempt for Hello Games as a result of the game’s quality, leading to rumors suggesting that many developers had abandoned the studio as a result of the controversy.
Although it’s not exactly controversial for developers to switch between different companies in the industry, that Bourn is doing so not long after No Man’s Sky‘s release is inevitably turning a few heads. The change in career was outlined on his LinkedIn page, which now states that he is employed as a live designer for Foundry 42, a team that is currently working on Star Citizen‘s stand alone single-player campaign, Squadron 42.
Squadron 42 will be an episodic series, with the first episode set for launch in early 2017. It is set to be a precursor to Star Citizen, which has drawn parallels with No Man’s Sky throughout its development. While Star Citizen mirrors No Man’s Sky‘s ambitions in that it is looking to provide a huge, open-world space exploration game that grants its players plenty of freedom in the way they interact with it, it is hoped that Star Citizen will be able to more adequately meet players’ expectations.