343 Industries creative director Ryan Payton has left the Halo developer to begin a new studio called Camouflaj.
Payton, who was also part of the development team working on Metal Gear Solid 4 for Kojima Productions, told Kotaku he left the studio because he wasn’t “creatively excited” about the title he was working on at 343, Halo 4.
“The Halo I wanted to build was fundamentally different and I don’t think I had built enough credibility to see such a crazy endeavor through,” he said.
“I had a great run at Microsoft. I don’t regret one day of it. But after a few years, there came a point where I wasn’t creatively excited about the project anymore.”
Payton decided on a change from 343 after being diagnosed with severe depression.
“For somebody who loves this industry as much as I do and know how lucky I’ve been, I never thought I’d get to a point where I was so drained. That was when I knew I had to do something else.”
Payton confirmed in the interview – and at a session at CEDEC in Japan this morning – that he’s created a new studio called Camouflaj, where two projects are already underway. He said he doesn’t regret the time spent at 343, though.
“I think time is the most valuable thing we have, and I’ve decided that I’m not going to waste one more day working on something that doesn’t speak to my values.”