VP of product development at Rockstar Games, Jeronimo Barrera, has left the studio after 20 years.
"I pretty much left when it was done, it was a natural progression," he said. "I looked at what I would be doing for the next few years if I stayed on and where I was in life with my family, my kids, my desire to make cool sh*t. I felt like it was hitting all of the right points."
"My job entailed basically steering the ship in the right direction," he said. "With a studio team that maxed out at two thousand plus, just trying to keep the direction of all of this stuff heading in the right direction was pretty much my job."
Reflecting on why he chose to leave now given he'd been with Rockstar from when it just five developers, Barrera said we were "in a new dawn" in the industry, and if he'd stayed at Rockstar, "it would have been more GTAs, more RDRs and less of this other stuff going on out there right now".
"I think we are in a new dawn of the industry where there is a lot of cool sh*t happening in terms of the technology, not just in the console world, but with how games are published, the technology out there," he said. "I think virtual reality and augmented reality are amazing things. We're just in the baby steps of that stuff. If I had stayed at Rockstar it would have been more GTAs, more RDRs and less of this other stuff going on out there right now."
“I think I want to find something that at the end of the day makes me proud to be part of it and helps to evolve the industry,” he said. "I’m very proud of everything I did with Rockstar.”
Further to Rockstar chief Dan Houser’s comments on working 100-hour weeks, Barrera said he could "only speak from his own perspective and the sacrifices he made personally".
"You make the best things in the world by being your best self," he said. "I think Rockstar made the best stuff ever by getting the best out of people. We all work hard. The majority of the people who work at Rockstar think its all f–king great, they take care of you and it’s all fun."