Halo composer Marty O'Donnell fired from Bungie 'without cause'

Halo composer Marty O'Donnell fired from Bungie 'without cause'
Aaron Lee

By Aaron Lee

April 16th 2014 at 12:55PM

Studio’s in-house composer of more than ten years dismissed under unspecified circumstances

Martin ‘Marty’ O’Donnell, the composer best known for the music behind Bungie’s Halo and upcoming title Destiny, has left the studio. And according to him the two parties have not parted favourably.

On a blog post today from Bungie, the studio’s community manager DeeJ confirmed that O’Donnell is no longer with the studio.

“For more than a decade, Marty O’Donnell filled our worlds with unforgettable sounds and soundtracks, and left an indelible mark on our fans. Today, as friends, we say goodbye,” he wrote.

“We know that wherever his journey takes him, he will always have a bright and hopeful future. We wish him luck in all his future endeavors.”

However, the often outspoken O’Donnell said events transpired differently, tweeting: “I'm saddened to say that Bungie's board of directors terminated me without cause on April 11, 2014”.

O’Donnell’s most recent work was for Bungie’s upcoming MMO Destiny. An overture, called Music of the Spheres, was released last year, intended to set the mood and themes for the full score. It’s not yet known whether O’Donnell’s work on Destiny was completed before the parting.

O”Donnell has worked at Bungie for over ten years, working as the studio’s in-house composer and audio director – an unusual position, as most video game composer work independently as contractors.

He has been writing music since the 80s, but his move into video games started with the 1997 title Riven. It was producing the music for 2001’s Halo: Combat Evolved that he is best known for. The themes and motifs of the Halo universe have become a fan favourites, with numerous YouTube tributes and the music appearing across campaign for Microsoft’s Xbox consoles and during its press conferences.