Michael Condrey is the chief operating and development officer of Sledgehammer Games, which he co-founded with Glen Schofield after their collaboration on the popular video game franchise Dead Space.


Condrey graduated in 1997 from the University of Washington. The following year, his senior thesis on applying biotechnology to conservation biology was published in the Journal of Molecular Ecology. After serving as scuba diving instructor and boat captain in the Cayman Islands, he began work on a graduate degree in Seattle. It was there that launched his game development career, beginning with a summer job at Electronic Arts during the peak of Seattle's gaming explosion. Condrey later relocated to Redwood City at the EA-owned studio Visceral Games, where he became studio chief operations officer, as well as senior development director on the 2008 title Dead Space. He also worked on three other successful EA franchises: Need for Speed, FIFA, and the James Bond game series.

In November 2009, Condrey and Visceral Games colleague Glen Schofield founded Sledgehammer Games, a subsidiary of Activision operating under that company's independent studio model. Condrey likened the opportunity to work with Activision and Call of Duty to a baseball player getting a call from the New York Yankees or a filmmaker hearing from Steven Spielberg After an initial attempt to create their own Call of Duty title, Condrey and Schofield collaborated with Infinity Ward on Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. The game grossed $1 billion in worldwide sales in its first 16 days and took the Best Shooter prize at the 2011 Spike Video Game Awards. The following year, the game was named Game Design of the Year at the Korea Games Conference and won the Global Award from Japan Game Awards 2012 at the Tokyo Game Show.

Game credits

Call of Duty Advanced Warfare2014ActivisionDirector
Call of Duty: Black Ops II2012Activisionspecial thanks
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 32011ActivisionDirector
Call of Duty: Black Ops2010Activisionspecial thanks
Dead Space: Extraction2009Electronic Artsspecial thanks
Dead Space2008Electronic ArtsDirector
From Russia with Love2005Electronic ArtsDirector
James Bond 007: Everything or Nothing2003, 2004Electronic ArtsDirector
James Bond 007: Nightfire2002Electronic ArtsProducer
The World is Not Enough2000Electronic ArtsProducer
Champion Bass2000Electronic Arts
Ultimate Hunt Challenge2000Electronic Arts
Deer Hunt Challenge1999Electronic Arts
FIFA '991998Electronic ArtsProducer
Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit1998Electronic ArtsProducer

Industry perspective

Condrey has expressed concerns about the industry's focus on the top five blockbuster video game console titles, noting that, in 2012, "there are probably 10 games that should qualify" at that tier, leaving the middle space below as a kind of game purgatory. The result, he said, has created more innovation for other platforms, genres and business models, including Apple's iOS operating system, freemium business models and social games. "Across the industry," Condrey said in a GamesIndustry International interview, "it's as exciting as I've ever seen it in terms of innovation and trying new things out."