Overwatch photo of Jeff Kaplan

[Update]: Overwatch's new Game Director Aaron Keller will be revealing some juicy Overwatch 2 PvP details on May 20, 2021!

If you're a fan of Overwatch, you might want to brace yourself as I have some rather sad news to deliver. Jeff Kaplan, a storied Blizzard veteran and one of the driving forces behind Overwatch, has now decided to leave the company.

"I am leaving Blizzard Entertainment after 19 amazing years," reads the surprisingly brief farewell message. "It was truly the honor of a lifetime to have the opportunity to create worlds and heroes for such a passionate audience. I want to express my deep appreciation to everyone at Blizzard who supported our games, our game teams and our players. But I want to say a special thanks to the wonderful game developers that shared in the journey of creation with me."

As much as I don't want to be a doomsayer, I can't help but feel that this doesn't bode well for Overwatch 2. Jeff Kaplan has always been incredibly passionate about Overwatch, something that is easily apparent from watching any of the developer updates, so him leaving during the trickiest part of Overwatch 2's development can't have been an easy decision. Whether this was a result of personal issues, burnout or perhaps internal struggles within Blizzard, that is something I'm afraid we likely won't find out for many years to come.

Either way, this is a massive loss for both Overwatch and Blizzard as a whole. Jeff Kaplan was one of the greats, one of the key people that made Blizzard games the synonym for quality, and his absence will definitely be felt. I can only hope he'll eventually pop back up, kind of like Mike Morhaime, with a brand new studio and fresh new ideas!

Whatever the future might bring, however, I'll make sure to let you know. Until then, you can read a little bit more about Jeff Kaplan's departure over at the Overwatch website.