In a high-profile personnel loss for Sony, Gamasutra has learned that the company's longstanding Manager of Developer Relations at Sony Computer Entertainment America, Mark DeLoura, has departed the firm for a new technical director position at Ubisoft North America.
DeLoura, who is well-respected within the industry and serves on the Game Developers Conference advisory board, has chosen to leave his position in the months leading up to the PlayStation 3's release, and the move is likely to spark new concerns about the readiness of Sony for the November launch date.
The former editor-in-chief of Game Developer magazine and lead development support engineer at Nintendo of America is now technical director for Ubisoft North America in San Francisco, and is responsible for ensuring the technical quality of all third-party developed titles published by Ubisoft in North America.
The new Ubisoft job entails examining technical design documents when titles are proposed, technical analysis of game studios Ubisoft may work with, and co-ordination with platform manufacturers and middleware vendors, and is thus not unlike much of the liaison work DeLoura was striving to accomplish at Sony. However, his reasons for leaving the PlayStation 3 creator have not been made public.
This is the second high-profile loss for Sony over the past couple of months, with Sony Computer Entertainment America's senior director of communications and brand development Molly Smith resigning from the company
in June - Smith had served as SCEA's central PR figure since 1994 and the launch of the original PlayStation.