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Xbox studio The Initiative hires three God of War designers

Microsoft's new Santa Monica-based studio, The Initiative, is still recruiting talent from all over. But it really appears to have found some fertile ground in the most obvious of places: Sony Santa Monica.

According to DualShockers, The Initiative has brought on three new employees who previously worked on God of War, the award-winning PlayStation 4 exclusive from last year: Ian Miller, Chris O'Neill, and Ray Yeomans. All three were level designers on God of War, a game few would argue was poorly designed. And they're actually the second, third, and fourth members of the God of War team now working for The Initiative, as the studio previously poached the game's senior managing producer, Brian Westergaard.

Both Miller and Yeomans, for what it's worth, also have experience working on the Tomb Raider franchise with Crystal Dynamics. And as fate would have it, The Initiative is also home to Tomb Raider and Rise of the Tomb Raider game director Daniel Neuburger, and is headed up by Darrell Gallagher, who was in charge of the Tomb Raider series while at Crystal Dynamics.

It's safe to say Microsoft has a solid foundation in place to build a third-person action-adventure game.

Unfortunately, we still have no idea what The Initiative is actually working on. And judging by all the hires in the past two years, whatever the studio is cooking up isn't all that far along. We'd be shocked if The Initiative's first project didn't come in the next generation, and we're not even saying by launch. Perhaps a year or two into Project Scarlett's life, or maybe even more.

We'll be keeping a close eye on what The Initiative gets up to in the meantime, including any new hires that join the studio. Sony and Crystal Dynamics might be watching more closely from now on, too.