For many, Marty O'Donnell's music was a key piece of Bungie's success story. Just imagine playing Halo without his iconic score, and you get an idea of how big of a role the composer played at the game development studio.
That's why news that he had been fired from the studio after working there for 14 years came as such a surprise for fans. Soon, O'Donnell was involved in a lawsuit against his former workplace, a lawsuit he eventually won when he was paid $100,000 for damages and unpaid work time. Now, he can be found leading his own development studio, which is currently working on the virtual reality game Golem.
A lot has changed for O'Donnell over the last few years, to say the least, and now he's finally beginning to talk more about the events that led to him getting the axe from Bungie.
Speaking with IGN, he says tensions began to rise between him and other members of the Bungie team over the creative decisions being made for Destiny during its development.
[T]here were things that were being re-jiggered, and my frustration with some of the business and creative decisions started to mean that I was on this side of the divide and everybody else was on this side," O'Donnell says. "And, as much as we tried to bridge it, it just didn't seem like it was going to get bridged."
He goes on to say that, despite the disagreements, he is still unsure precisely why he was fired.
"The 'why' question is actually still a question for me," he says. "I don't know why. I was surprised."
O'Donnell goes on to say that it's quite possible the relationship between him and Bungie leaders couldn't have been mended. If that was the case, then he says he doesn't necessarily view his firing as the wrong decision. He does, however, think Bungie went about the process the wrong way. Bungie has scarcely commented on the matter, but O'Donnell wasn't the only longtime Bungie employee to part ways over Destiny. Halo writer Joseph Staten also left the company during the game's development.