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Eidos co-founder Ian Livingstone departs Square Enix

James Batchelor
Eidos co-founder Ian Livingstone departs Square Enix

British games industry veteran Ian Livingstone has left Square Enix after more than 20 years working with the team.

Ian oversaw the formation of notable Britsoft firm Eidos, which was acquired by Square Enix in 2009. He leaves his position as Eidos Life President.

During his time at Eidos, he helped launch popular franchises such as Thief, Hitman, Deus Ex and Legacy of Kain. 

Perhaps most notably, he brought Lara Croft and the Tomb Raider franchise to the market when he discovered gaming's foremost lady of adventuring during a studio tour at creators Core Design.

Other highlights in his long and impressive career, as chronicled by the Square Enix blog, include co-founding Games Workshop, launching Dungeons & Dragons in Europe and co-writing the Fighting Fantasy books with Steve Jackson, starting with the 17m-selling The Warlock of Firetop Mountain in 1982.

He has also been a fierce proponent of improving the computer skills taught at school, with a prime example being his work on the government's Next Gen Skills campaign.

Ian will remain active in the games industry as an advisor and entrepreneur in social and mobile games. 

His current roles include vice chair of trade body UKIE, chair of Playdemic, Playmob, Skillset's Video Games Council and the Next Gen Skills Committee. He is also a member of the Creative industries Council and trustee of games industry charity GamesAid.

Ian also has many accolades to his name, including a BAFTA Special Award for his contribution to the industry, two honorary PhDs, an OBE and a CBE.

Phil Rogers, CEO of Square Enix for Europe and America, said: “Every industry has pioneers and legends, words which can be used too casually, but not in the case of Ian, who should be an inspiration to everyone making games all over the world. 

"Without his creativity and vision, names like Games Workshop, Fighting Fantasy and Tomb Raider might never have been.

"Over and above his gaming success he has worked tirelessly to further the UK video games industry and more recently to promote education and computer literacy. Doing all this whilst devoting a lot of personal time to supporting numerous charities where he now wants to focus even more of his efforts.

"We thank Ian. They say ‘Busy people make time’ and I’m hopeful that our and Ian’s paths will cross again.”

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Tags: square enix , livingstone , ian livingstone , eidos , games workshop , skillset , next gen report , Fighting Fantasy , next gen skills

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