According to Falstein’s post, “the opportunity to build the big, consequential games that I had been hired to help create failed to materialize, even as the world market for games has continued to grow in size, diversity, and geographic reach.”
VentureBeat, which first picked up the story, noted that Pokemon Go, the gigantic augmented reality game hit of last year, originated not at Google proper, but at the Niantic Labs, a company spun out of Google in 2015.
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Per Falstein’s online bio, he got into the games business in 1980, joining LucasFilms Games early (now known as LucasArts Entertainment.) He then moved on to the 3DO Company and Dreamworks Interactive.
Fortune contacted Google (GOOGL) for comment and will update this story as needed.
As has been noted over the past year or so, Google’s parent company Alphabet—as rich and powerful as it may be—is scaling back some of its non-core efforts, including a number of its ambitious Moonshot projects. It also seems to be focusing on what management must see as more strategic initiatives, like selling Google Cloud Platform and G Suite applications to business users.