” Hello everyone ! This is Jeff from the Overwatch team ”is a phrase Blizzard FPS fans will no longer be able to hear from the incredible, majestic, one and only Jeff Kaplan : the vice president of Blizzard leaves Irvine’s studio, leaving his place of Game Director to his assistant, Aaron Keller.
In an Overwatch blog post, Blizzard Announces the departure of the Game Director of Overwatch who will take the opportunity to let go a rather succinct “goodbye” :
It was truly the honor of a lifetime to have the opportunity to create worlds and heroes for such a passionate audience. I want to express my deep gratitude to everyone at Blizzard who has supported our games, teams and players. But I want to especially thank the wonderful game developers who shared the journey of creation with me. Never accept the world as it appears to be, but always dare to see it as it could be. Hope you do the same. gg, Jeffrey Kaplan
Recruited as Quest designer sur World of Warcraft en 2002, Jeff Kaplan was part of the furniture of the Californian studio for 19 years, passing through the position of co-director on WoW alongside Tom Chilton and J. Allen Brack, the current CEO of Blizzard.
However, Kaplan has recently been known to be the face – and what a beautiful face – of the Overwatch team since the early days of development at Blizzard. With a rather reassuring right of inspection sure Overwatch 2 construction site during the February BlizzConline, this little-justified departure can then seem quite sudden. It’s hard to imagine the historical leader of the project leaving the latter without a good reason, while much remains to be done.
When we look for a justification, we can hardly put aside that it reigns a dirty atmosphere at Blizzard for a few years. The management of Activision has an ever more pronounced grip on Irvine’s studio, forcing, for example, the latter to parting with employees, while the group knows record profits. And again, it is nothing when the editor does not dissolve a fully functional studio. to better dilute its workforce at Blizzard. Thereby, a dispute with the changing philosophy of the box cannot be ruled out.
Jeff Kaplan isn’t the studio’s first major figure to quit Blizzard lately, and may not be the last. In a few months, he will make an announcement to indicate he joined Dreamhaven, founded by Mike and Amy Morhaime, who knows ?
The cavalry has arrived
In any case, Aaron Keller’s message which qualifies Jeff Kaplan as a “great leader, mentor and friend” is already much longer than that of the former Game Director. The assistant takes over and now takes the place of the leader, indicating that the team remains dedicated and experienced :
- Speaking of Overwatch 2, development continues at a good pace. We have an exceptional vision that we are executing, the reaction of many of you to the updates we have shared on BlizzConline has thrilled us, and we have some exciting reveals planned for this year and beyond. beyond as we prepare for the launch.
- We will be sharing more frequent updates with you on the progress of Overwatch 2 and new live game features very soon. While I have no pretensions to filling Jeff’s shoes, I am excited to take on the role of Game Director and continue to be a part of a team that puts all of their heart, talent and focus into the next iteration. Overwatch, and I am honored to continue to serve this incredible community.
At a time a major overhaul of the multiplayer aspect of Overwatch and a suite that will bring ambitious narrative PVE features, Overwatch 2 still doesn’t have a launch window. Blizzard claims that the title will not be ready this year, that said.