GTA V Developer Tom Shepherd Joins New Game Studio Microsoft

Tom Shepherd, the technical director of Grand Theft Auto 5, has joined The Initiative. The studio was founded by Microsoft and features other big names in the game industry, including Brian Westengaard, the lead producer of God of War.

According to Tom Shepherd’s LinkdIn account, he has been with The Initiative since September. Windows Central noted the switch. Shepherd was technical director at Rockstar Games and has worked on not only GTA V but also Red Dead Redemption. The vacancy for technical director is still open on The Initiative’s website and his LinkdIn profile does not yet state which position Shepherd holds. It is therefore not yet known what his role is within the new studio.

In August, it was announced by studio head David Gallagher that Shepherd’s ex-colleague, Christian Cantamessa, also works for the studio. Cantamessa has been the lead designer and writer for Red Dead Redemption.

On June 10, the founding of The Initiative was announced by Microsoft. The studio is made up of developers from smaller studios bought by Microsoft, such as Ninja Theory and Undead Labs. These are known from Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice and State of Decay respectively. The Initiative will mainly focus on developing Xbox One games.