Mike Profile Pic.jpg

About Mike Ellis

Mike is a game design veteran with over 25 years of industry experience. During this time he's worked for a number of developers and publishers in design leadership roles, such as Design Director, Design Manager and Lead Designer. This has seen Mike move from the UK to the US, working at studios along the West coast.

Working as a developer, co-developer, or publishing partner has taken Mike all over the UK and the US, with additional collaborations in Canada, Russia, South Korea, and the Netherlands. He has shipped games for consoles, PC, and mobile platforms.

Mike is a Certified Scrum Master (CSM) and a voting member of BAFTA.

Mike is equally comfortable working as a contributor, collaborator, or manager. He has been a part of the leadership group for teams of over a hundred people, and has managed design departments of up to 15 people, across multiple projects. Mike has experience ranging from the studio floor, to working with teams that are half way around the world.

Some of his favorite moments are when he has Adobe Illustrator open, creating visually oriented design materials, with a pair of headphones on. 

Games aren't just an interest or career for Mike.
They are his life's work.



"Even though Mike was the external Design Director on behalf of 343 on our two Halo projects, it always felt like he was a member of the team and he was treated as such by the entire group at Vanguard / Force Field. He quickly earned the respect of the design team by showing a strong understanding of what makes a great game design. All his input was always tremendously structured and clearly communicated, compelling our team to try and integrate as much of his value adding suggestions and recommendations as possible. He also showed an appreciation of the constraints of external development, taking into account budget and schedule limitations and balancing this with his drive for quality. I can wholeheartedly recommend anyone with the need for an experienced designer to hire him, as it will make your game a better game."

Martin de Ronde
CCO & Founder, Force Field VR (previously Vanguard Games)


"I worked with Mike over a period of 5 years on Halo at 343 Industries. In Mike's role as Design Director in the publishing team, he drove the quality for multiple Halo products such as "Spartan Assault" and "Halo Wars 2". His drive, high level of knowledge and overall relationship management are second to none in this industry, and Mike is an absolute pleasure to work with. I can't recommend Mike enough for anything design related from initial vision to final mechanics tuning. I would love the chance to work with Mike again in the future" 

Graeme Jennings
Halo Wars 2 Executive Producer


"Mike combines a wealth of real-world development experience with true game design ability. He integrated brilliantly when working in our dev team, with a talent for efficiently and effectively highlighting, then tackling, design challenges - at a high or low level. Providing ego-less insight and solutions, whether communicating an executive or designer level. If you're working on a video game project Mike Ellis can and will improve it, he’s also a pleasure to work with."

Alistair Hope
Creative Director, Creative Assembly



Work Samples

For samples of Mike's design work, please go here.


Additional Background

Find out more about Mike via his personal website.



Get in Touch

For all inquires, please get in touch.