Photo of Hearthstone's former game director Ben Brode

After 15 years at Blizzard and almost 10 years of working on Hearthstone, Ben Brode has now left now left the company. Thankfully, this was not due to any sort of internal disagreement or problems with management, but rather because Brode is eager to start his own company and work on a brand new project from the ground up.

"I am very fortunate to be able to take a crazy risk right now in my life, and I’m excited to be scrappy and a little scared. I’m going to help start a new company," reads the rather heartfelt announcement. "We’ll probably make games, but we haven’t figured anything else out, yet. I’m looking forward to designing, programming, and actually creating things again. I’m going to miss the on-campus Starbucks, though. Dang."

"I am very proud of Hearthstone. I think we made an impact on the industry. People tell me that Hearthstone brought their family closer together, or that they became close friends with people they met at a Fireside Gathering. Others tell me they were inspired by Hearthstone to become game developers themselves. It’s incredible to be a part of something that touches so many people. But as proud as I am of Hearthstone, I am even more proud of the team."

Hearthstone card showing Ben Brode


If you're wondering if this is going to negatively affect Hearthstone's future, worry not as Ben Brode was only one part of a team that numbers more than 80 people. There might be a change in the way Hearthstone is updated once the next game director steps in, but I highly doubt it's going to be anything significant as the team is clearly wise enough not to mess with a winning formula.

"There is no team like the Hearthstone team. People have come and gone over the 10 years Hearthstone has been in development, but there’s something special about the Soul of the Team," continues the farewell message. "We knew our most important product wasn’t the game, but the team itself. A great team can do great things, and I think the Hearthstone team is the greatest. It isn’t just a job. It’s a shared passion. We get to come to work and focus on the game we love and try to make it better every day."

"I get too much credit by virtue of being a public face, but the 80+ people on the development team are still there, and they are the ones actually making the cards, brawls, events, missions, and features. I am confident the game is in the best possible hands, and I’m excited to see where a new generation of leaders takes Hearthstone from here."

You can read a few more comments, as well as say farewell to Brode yourself, by visiting the Hearthstone forums.