Firefall studio founder Mark Kern ousted as chief executive officer

Above: Firefall in action.

Image Credit: Red 5 Studios

Mark Kern is out as the chief executive officer of Firefall developer Red 5 Studios.

In a statement provided to GamesBeat, Red 5 confirmed the move. The company also revealed that Red 5 president of development James MaCauley will step in as acting chief executive. 

“As of Thursday, Dec. 19, Mark Kern is no longer the chief executive officer of Red 5 Studios,” reads the statement. “Mark founded Red 5 Studios in 2006 to provide exceptional game entertainment along with a world-class team of developers working on the MMO Shooter, Firefall.”

When asked for further details, a Red 5 spokesperson declined to comment. Earlier this morning, website GameFront reported on a letter sent to Red 5 employees that claimed that the board of directors met and decided to fire Kern.

Firefall is a free-to-play online team shooter with massively multiplayer elements. Prior to founding Red 5, Kern led development on World of Warcraft for Blizzard. Kern had always planned to take what he learned from making WOW and apply it to the shooter genre with Firefall.

“The team at Red 5 continues work on Firefall and looks forward to all that we have to offer in 2014,” read the statement.

In September, Red 5 announced it was “reorganizing” to focus on more squarely on Firefall’s core features. The studio cut much of its marketing budget and cut 10 percent of its staff.

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