After a decade, World of Warcraft game director Tom Chilton has announced today that he’s stepping away from the top job on Blizzard’s MMORPG now that Legion has launched.
Don’t worry, he’s not going anywhere. Chilton is sticking with the company, and will be working on something new and unannounced. Chilton’s been working with World of Warcraft since 2004, and revealed the news on a post on the game’s forums.
"For me, Legion has been more than just another expansion, though" said Chilton, posting under his forum handle Kalgan, "it’s the culmination of more than a decade of work with one of the best development teams I’ve ever had the pleasure to be a part of. And it’s with a mix of excitement, sadness, and gratitude that I’m saying farewell to the WoW team and moving on to a new adventure within Blizzard."
Chilton mentioned in his post that Ion Hazzikostas will be taking over his role as game director. Hazzikostas is currently the game’s lead designer, and has worked on World of Warcraft for 8 years.
"Know that WoW will be in great hands with Ion at the helm." Chilton said, "he’s been an integral part of the team for more than eight years and has contributed to so many aspects of the game’s development—from class design to encounter design and nearly everything in between. He also has an amazing team at his side—the same epic crew that brought you all the content you’re enjoying in Legion."
"As a member of the WoW team, I can assure you that the future for World of Warcraft continues to be bright—and as a player, I’m excited to discover what’s in store next alongside all of you. World of Warcraft is the product of the passion of both the team and all of its players, so I’d also like to thank each of you for the wonderful journey that working on the WoW development team has been."
There’s no word on what Chilton could be upto next. They’re currently in active development on Hearthstone, Diablo III, Starcraft II, Overwatch and World of Warcraft and Blizzard’s many fans will likely be wondering what happens next. There’s the possibility something will be announced at Blizzcon, but Blizzard often play the long game, so this project could still percolate for a couple of years.