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It's been a torturous week for Microsoft, but we aren't quite at the weekend yet. New reporting suggests that longtime employees and even some of the brand's founders agree that things have shifted so dramatically at Xbox since the bad old days that, effectively: "It's no longer Xbox, but Microsoft Gaming."

That's according to a report from IGN's Ryan McCaffrey, who penned a piece on Microsoft's recent mishaps. McCaffrey spoke to two former longtime Xbox employees on the condition of anonymity, who separately lamented the current state of the business. Before news of this week's closures broke, the first alleged that: "I had lengthy conversations with a bunch of Xbox founders, and we all came to the same conclusion: 'It's no longer Xbox, but Microsoft Gaming.'"

The second described a situation not unlike an anaconda attempting to ingest an elephant, alleging that Xbox got too big and fast: "There is just too much surface area. You have, effectively, three huge companies at play and Microsoft never really finished [the] integration with Bethesda. [And] Activision is like three times the size Xbox was. [The] 360 launched with a few hundred people. Last I heard, Xbox now has almost 30,000 people."

The second Xbox veteran points to meddling coming from higher up the Microsoft corporate food chain, explaining why decisions made by current executives seem so wildly inconsistent: "These decisions probably aren't being made by Phil. This is all getting dictated by [Microsoft CEO] Satya [Nadella] and [Microsoft CFO] Amy Hood, and it all stems from the Activision acquisition."

How hopeful are you that gaming will return to normal in the coming weeks? Batten down the hatches and weather the storm in the comments section below.