Chris Metzen leaves Blizzard. :*(

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Shinryu Masaki
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Chris Metzen leaves Blizzard. :*(

Unread post by Shinryu Masaki » Tue Sep 13, 2016 8:25 am

I didn't see that one coming, but in his case he is going into retirement to concentrate on his family. I wish him well, though it will be weird to watch future BlizzCons without geek daddy there to entertain the crowds.

http://us.battle.net/forums/en/wow/topi ... 9?page=1#1
I had just turned twenty years old when I started working at Blizzard. Seems like a lifetime ago. Guess it was. Those first few years were the start of a very grand adventure for me, one that would take me around the world, introduce me to thousands of wonderful geeks just like me—and ultimately shape the course of my adult life.

Of course when I started, I had absolutely no idea what I was doing. I had no idea how to make games or build entertainment products.…

But I had an insatiable passion for ideas. For stories. For heroes.

My only real training before joining Blizzard was the long-running D&D campaign I had with my closest friends—Sam, Mike P., Daniel, and Mikey C. (you know who you are, boys…HAMRO!). Building ideas—vast worldscapes, characters, and plotlines with my friends was my first great love. I lived for it. It was a safe space amid the tension and change of some rough teenage years. The grand refuge of D&D was a glorious meeting of minds and imaginations where I felt I truly belonged.

It was a space where friendship and imagination were inextricably linked.

The sharing of ideas on the fly, the crazy, unexpected turns other players would take—it stretched our imaginations in ways we’d never have dreamt of on our own. I loved how roleplaying through adventures taught us so much about each other—and, more often than not, ourselves. Imagining together helped us make sense of the crazy world we were growing up in. It made us stronger together.

I wouldn’t really understand the depth of it for many years, but I had learned an important truth from my friends back then:

Creativity is relational.

Looking back at my years at Blizzard, I see now how profoundly this idea has shaped my career. I see how profoundly my friends and coworkers at Blizzard have shaped me as a person.

For nearly twenty-three years I’ve had the very distinct privilege of shaping worlds and building games with the brightest creative minds in entertainment. I’ve walked with giants (and stood on some giants’ shoulders, too).

In short, I’ve had the time of my life.

I pretty much had the coolest job ever—but the truth is, sometimes it was really hard. Building games with dozens of brilliant, passionate alpha-geeks with their own red-hot instincts and perspectives can be pretty tricky. Coming to consensus about certain design decisions, story motifs, or courses of art direction takes a lot of communication, patience, and “give and take.” It stretches you. Sometimes it wasn’t all that pretty. But engaging with your teammates and collaborating through the potential quagmire of all that creative tension is where the real magic happens.

It’s not just the decisions you come to—or even the final shape of the product you craft.… It’s bigger than that—and infinitely more important. True collaboration builds trust—and trust is the basis of all lasting relationships. With trust you build more than just a great product.

You build a TRIBE…that can build anything.

A family of craftsmen.

That’s what Blizzard has been for me. My second family, through all of life’s ups and downs, it’s always been there. The great, geeky backdrop of my life. I don’t just mean “the job” or even the creative mission—but the people. The people who over and over lifted me up, believed in me—and pushed me to find my potential as both an artist and as a leader all these years.

To my Blizzard brothers and sisters…I wish I had the words.

Everything just sounds…trite.

All I can think of is…

You helped me believe in myself and achieve every one of my wildest dreams.
I am forever grateful to you.

I love you all with everything I’ve got.

Thank you.

And to all of you out there in Blizzard’s vast gaming community—those of you I’ve had the pleasure of meeting in person and all of you around the world I’ve only heard about—thank you.

Thank you all for letting me be a special part of your community. For letting me belong with you. We’ve shared countless adventures together and I’ve always been overwhelmed and humbled by your passion for our games as well your commitment to each other. Thank you for all the BlizzCon hugs, smiles, handshakes, and stories over the years. You will never know how much you’ve all touched my heart and inspired me to give my all into this craft.

With that said, I’ll try to get down to the point, here. I’ve come to a turn in the road. A new, far quieter chapter in my life looms ahead.

I am retiring.

Yup.

Hangin’ up my guns.
Clockin’ out.
Takin’ the last gryphon out of Stormwind.
You get the picture.

Crazy, I know.

It’s a massive change for me, but it’s one I’ve been looking forward to for a while now. It’s ironic given the fact that things have never been better or more energized at Blizzard. Just this year alone has been incredible.

Legion’s arrival.
The launch of Overwatch.
The Warcraft feature film.

I’ve never been more proud of Blizzard and the quality of its products than I am now. It’s remarkable that even after all these years we can still reach new heights and take the world for an amazing ride. I believe Blizzard’s future is brighter than ever.

I won’t lie—it’s going to be really hard stepping away from these worlds that I love. But I’m content that I’m leaving them in the hands of the most passionate, talented, and dedicated craftsmen ever assembled.

I can’t wait to see where Blizzard’s worlds go next—and to experience them first-hand like everyone else does. As a fan. As an adventurer. Right back to the start.

That’s just so cool…

The reason I use the word “retire” is because I’m not going to some other company or starting up new projects or anything remotely like that. It’s been a long, amazing stretch of years. Now it’s time to slow it down. Rest. Lay around on the couch and get fat. Well, fatter.…

Seriously though, I’ll be focusing on the one thing that matters most to me in all the world—my family. They’re the core of my life and the source of my deepest joy and inspiration. In addition to raising our two little ones, we recently welcomed our new baby into the family! Being home with them all, having time and space to really live…to love my wife with all my strength…that’s my career now.

And I’ve never been happier.

Ever. ☺

Peace out, y’all.

I love you all.

I’ll see you online.

Chris
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Wain
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Re: Chris Metzen leaves Blizzard. :*(

Unread post by Wain » Tue Sep 13, 2016 8:29 am

Honestly, good on him! He's worked very hard, helped produce amazing things, and deserves some time for himself and his family. Those last two are the things that most of us work for, after all.

I was really happy to read he plans to still voice Thrall. It would just be too weird to have any actor voice him. Though I won't be upset if it means he's not used to voice every other "growly voiced" incidental character, as there really does seem to be a lot of them ;)
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Re: Chris Metzen leaves Blizzard. :*(

Unread post by Niabi » Tue Sep 13, 2016 9:24 am

I wish him all the best in his future endeavors. The proof of his hard work and commitment certainly shines in the product we've all come to love so dearly :hug:

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Re: Chris Metzen leaves Blizzard. :*(

Unread post by zedxrgal » Tue Sep 13, 2016 1:10 pm

Wain wrote:Honestly, good on him! He's worked very hard, helped produce amazing things, and deserves some time for himself and his family. Those last two are the things that most of us work for, after all.
This is exactly what I said when I read another article sent to me by a non gaming friend about Chris leaving.
Lord knows I would if I could.

I'm curious who will take over his roll though.

Reading it gets me all misty eyed.

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Re: Chris Metzen leaves Blizzard. :*(

Unread post by Vephriel » Tue Sep 13, 2016 1:40 pm

This is so bittersweet. :(

I'm really happy for him and he's done so much he definitely deserves this, but man, it's hard to imagine Blizzard without him. His enthusiasm and passion have been such an iconic part of this game for me over the years. His presence will be missed. ;_;

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Re: Chris Metzen leaves Blizzard. :*(

Unread post by Bangeall » Tue Sep 13, 2016 4:24 pm

I was very sad to hear this, but he absolutely deserves it. He's a very likeable person who was passionate about his work. I've always loved listening to him talk about it. It's hard to imagine Blizzard without him, but I wish him all the best.

I always read "power" as "pow-herrrr" in Chris' voice :P Too many ICC and DS runs maybe.
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Re: Chris Metzen leaves Blizzard. :*(

Unread post by Vephriel » Tue Sep 13, 2016 5:00 pm


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Re: Chris Metzen leaves Blizzard. :*(

Unread post by Melissa » Tue Sep 13, 2016 6:47 pm

Going to be really sad to miss that passion and energy he beamed with when watching the next Blizzcon stream :(
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Re: Chris Metzen leaves Blizzard. :*(

Unread post by Wain » Tue Sep 13, 2016 7:09 pm

Vephriel wrote:Ghostcrawler talks about Metzen:
http://ask.fm/RiotGhostcrawler/answers/140669739147
:lol:
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Re: Chris Metzen leaves Blizzard. :*(

Unread post by cowmuflage » Tue Sep 13, 2016 10:18 pm

He's going to be green jesus somewhere else, for there is always a place that needs him.

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Re: Chris Metzen leaves Blizzard. :*(

Unread post by zedxrgal » Thu Sep 15, 2016 2:16 pm

Vephriel wrote:Ghostcrawler talks about Metzen:
http://ask.fm/RiotGhostcrawler/answers/140669739147
Link made my computer wig out for some reason. I rhink too many ads even though I've adblock *shrug*
So here is the script.

One of your former colleagues, Chris Metzen, just announced that he was retiring at 42. I know Chris as the legendary creator of Diablo, Starcraft and Warcraft, my childhood, but can you tell me what Chris was like in the office and how you feel about him?

Chris was a rockstar. That guy you saw on stage at Blizzard? That's 100% legit Metzen. He'd call us brothers and sisters. He'd call us cats. I think once he called me baby. I can't get away with talking like that, but he didn't fake it. That's who he was. He bleeds for his story, his characters, Blizzard, and most importantly, the players.
I first met him at a party, a few years before I went to work at Blizzard. He yelled at the top of his voice in a Scottish (dwarvish?) accent the entire time.
Sometimes in meetings he would get a far off stare, and you'd know something was bubbling up inside his mind and something great was about to come out.
Once at Blizzcon, he hugged me for like a really long time in the middle of a busy men's room. We blocked the doorway and made a lot of people wait in line that much longer.
A possibly apocryphal story: when Kaplan was new to Blizzard, Metzen came into his office, crashed on the couch for like an hour nap, woke up, asked "Do you know why they won't let us drink at work any longer?" Got up and left. (P.S. Blizzard let us drink at work all the time, so I'm not sure what that was all about.)
And maybe my favorite story. At a Blizzcon party we were all at, there was inexplicably a bowl of powdered donuts with the snacks. Chris took a donut, rubbed it under his nose (so that there's this light dusting of white powder) and then left it there all night as he bearhugged and did the Top Gun high-five to everyone at the party.
He's one of the top 5 or so most authentic and yet almost supernatural forces I've ever met. I am lucky to know him.


So much awesomeness.

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Re: Chris Metzen leaves Blizzard. :*(

Unread post by Lisaara » Fri Sep 16, 2016 9:09 pm

http://blizzardwatch.com/2016/09/16/chr ... ng-statue/

I can't help but go AWWWWW at this.

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