Get To Know Our Team
Comm(s)unity Manager

Hi, everyone! Wynn here again with a very special April 1st version of the Get to Know Our Team interviews. Today we’ll be chatting with—


You can’t just interrupt the intro. Wait… why are you wearing that ridiculous hat?

They need a way to tell us apart, so why not get in the holiday spirit?

It’s awful. Try something else.

Save me Mike.

Vecna can keep you. Next.

You either die a hero…

Nope that is truly villainous.

I haven’t even assumed my final form!

All right edge lord. Pick something normal.

Fine, this bit has gone on too long anyway.

Perfect. Now I can properly introduce my(our)self(ves)! This is Wynn! The Community, Communications, and Social Media Manager for Xbox Insider Program. How’s it going?

Pretty well. Hopefully some of y’all recognize me by now.

Well for the uninitiated, tell the audience a little bit about yourself.

Sure thing! Well, back in 1991, two people loved each other very much—

Okay, I think we skip forward a bit.

Fine. I’ll give the spark notes. (Do those even still exist?) I was born and raised in and around Atlanta. I’ve always loved games and gaming. Ever since I was in middle school, I knew that I wanted to work in the games industry. It’s a medium that is so uniquely positioned to tell interesting stories that it has captivated me my whole life.

True. I remember gaming always being there. From beating Mega Man X without boss powers to accidentally erasing mom’s save file on Super Mario World to getting lost in Eorzea and losing thousands of hours in Guitar Hero. It’s helped me through some hard times.

But you’re here now, working for Xbox. How did that happen?

I took a slightly long and arduous road here. I had a full ride to Georgia Tech fully planning on getting a Computer Science degree because that was the closest thing to “video game degree” that existed at a “normal” university at the time. But after a few semesters of classes, I dropped out to go the “starving artist” route. Did a lot of starving, not a lot of art.

I remember that. But I persevered. Worked at GameStop for a few years, some odd jobs here and there. Even took one off of Craigslist that wasn’t a scam. But I think you ended up joining Microsoft in 2013, is that right?

Yup! Started in the retail stores as a holiday hire. Converted to full-time Product Advisor at a brand-new store a few months later.

Shout out Store 0056!

That’s where I worked for around four years. Eventually became a technician and then ran the front of house service desk for that entire store until I left. I took a more traditional IT role as a temp job before being laid off as that company axed almost every single non-full-time employee.

A dark time. How’d you make it back to Microsoft?

My old manager at the retail stores actually moved into a sales organization and had an opening on her team. Which is the story of how I packed up my entire life and drove a U-Haul 26 hours straight from Atlanta to Fargo.

A climate, not to mention culture whiplash, to be sure.

You know, I didn’t mind the cold so much. Plus, not sitting in traffic for 90 minutes every day to get to work was an incredible blessing. The worst part was the food. It’s a culinary wasteland up there. Only like three restaurants in the whole city that I would eat at ever again.

Shout out Rustica, Plaza Azteca, and Pounds.

So how long did you stay in sales?

Around two and half years in Fargo and then moved to Charlotte to be closer to family and friends for another two years before getting caught up in another round of layoffs.

Yikes. Almost five years to the day of the previous one, yeah?

Funny how life is cyclical like that isn’t it? But I’m a firm believer that everything happens for reason, even if you have to retroactively apply that reasoning. In different circumstances, I’m not sure I would’ve been in a place to take this position.

Especially true since these first seven months working here have been the most enjoyable and fulling work I’ve done in my time at Microsoft.

Exactly. Couldn’t have said it better myself.

Right. Cause you did say it.

So, you’ve been at Microsoft over a decade, here almost a year, what’s your favorite moment so far.

Hmm. I’ve done a ton of really cool stuff since joining. Some highlights include hosting a 100+ person soccer gaming tournament out of my store with a true “round robin” format. It took like 9 hours to finish, and people flew out from all over the US. Then there was a bunch of work I did with achievements for like three years. Can’t really go into specifics, but that was a top moment personally.

Ahh yes. Achievements. My one true gaming love.

Oh! A small plug for something happening right now. My favorite thing that’s launched—keyword launched—is the pizza survey we’re doing right now. It was a silly idea that everyone was on board with, and I’ve been pretty pleased with the results so far.

Yes, everyone who has been asking why the survey results have changed will be pleased to know that they’ll be returning to normal after this week.

For now.


I’m not sure how jump scares come across in text, but I went for it.

Well, speaking of something recent, is there anything you’re working on that you can tell the Xbox Insiders about.

Well, we’ve been working on the release notes migration, which there should be a bigger announcement of later this week / next week. There’s a new Community Update coming out tomorrow, but really anything else I say here won’t be believed because of the day.

Yeah, we could say anything we want here, and no one will know the difference.

Exactly. Let’s tell them about the—

Uhh, Wynn? You cut out there.


You there?

Whoa. Sorry about that. There was this bright flash of light and I think my camera knocked out.

What were we talking about?

Uhh… you know what? Let’s move on to the rapid-fire questions.

What’s a game that has impacted your life the most?

Ah! I finally get to tell everyone that I purposefully phrased this question this way because I don’t believe in “favorite” media.

Yes, this seems like an okay time to wax philosophic.

So, there’s too much media out there. Too many different genres, variations, etc. having an “all-time” favorite just means you haven’t experienced your new favorite yet. What’s infinitely more interesting is how media impacts your life. The song that brings back memories of your first kiss, the movie that makes you tear up because you watched it with someone who has passed on. Those are the moments that are truly special.

Despite the pretention, I am forced to agree.

To answer the question itself, I mentioned it earlier in passing, but I’ve beat Mega Man X more than a hundred times, which is saying something since I’m generally not someone who replays games. The most recent game that had a profound impact on me was Outer Wilds. That entire experience hit me at a point where the scope, message, and melancholy all wrapped up into a deeply personal moment for me.

Can’t forget about Eternal Sonata either. The Heaven’s Mirror flowers in particular are something inextricably tied to my life as my best friend passed away at the same time those bloom in the game.

Plus, it’s a truly magnificent game that deals with the idea of “someone’s last moments” in a unique and interesting way.

Okay, I get that part of the joke of this interview is that it’s mostly serious, but we’re almost out of time.

But isn’t time a flat circle?

Okay, Rust. That’s a great segue.

Since you don’t re-watch stuff often, do you have any favorite TV shows?

Well, I do think the first season of True Detective is a near perfect show. But I generally veered more sitcom. Community, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Cougar Town. All peak television. I also liked the late aughts “dude who isn’t a cop, but has some unique insight” shows like Castle, The Mentalist, and White Collar.

Yeah, I generally like TV shows more than movies, but a few all-timers on that front are School of Rock, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, and Inception. I’m trying to remember the last “artsy” movie I watched, so I don’t lose all credibility.

Everything Everywhere All At Once?

Yeah, that’s ticket.

Okay, music. I know you can talk about this for hours, so just hit me with the top bands in each genre.

Weezer (Alternative); Alesana or Chiodos (Post-Hardcore); Streetlight Manifesto (3rd Wave Ska); I See Stars (Electronic Hardcore); Veil of Maya (Djent); In Fear and Faith or Currents (Metalcore); Shadow of Intent or Brand of Sacrifice (Deathcore); Motoi Sakuraba or Yasunori Mitsuda (Video Game Composers); Pepper – (Reggae); Muse (Rock); The Devil Wears Prada (Christian Metalcore Bands From Ohio That Started In The Mid Aughts).

I love that that last genre has at least a dozen entrants. I’ll go ahead and sum up the final question. I’m a huge soccer fan. I played all growing up and I still follow several teams. YNWA. We’re sending off Klopp right. I also read a ton of sci-fi fantasy novels and dabble in writing them myself.

No self-promo!

Fine, fine. Okay, let’s wrap this one up.

Any final thoughts for the community?

First, I just want to say. Hey. Look at us.

Who woulda thought, huh?

Not me. It’s so wild that we’re here and doing this.

So, I’d like to give an enormous thank you to the entire Xbox Insider community. Without all of you I would quite literally be out of a job, and I take that responsibility very seriously. These first several months have been incredible. I know things haven’t necessarily moved quite at the pace I would’ve liked them to, but I hope the community knows that changes are being made. There’s not a comment on socials that’s been posted since I got here that I haven’t read.

Exactly. It’s hard to state in words some of this because I know everyone wants to see actions. But if there’s any assurance to be had, it’s hopefully the knowledge that things are being worked on.

Hopefully there’ll be more to share in the near future!

Okay, I’m checking this word count and I won’t let my own interview be the longest, so that’s all for now folks!

Xbox Insiders, be sure to be on the lookout for more content all throughout February including more interviews from the team, a trip down memory lane, and so much more. All of our 10th Anniversary content can be found on our Hub Page.

Until next time! Wy\nn/