Ben Brode Leaving Blizzard
Our favorite flannel shirt developer is leaving the Hearthstone team and Blizzard.
Originally Posted by Ben Brode (Blue Tracker)
To my friends, coworkers, and the Hearthstone community,

After 15 years at Blizzard and almost 10 years working on Hearthstone, I have made the incredibly difficult decision to embark on a new journey.

Man, that was a hard sentence to type.

I was 20 years old when I started here. My first role was ‘Night Crew Game Tester.’

Since then, Blizzard has been good to me. I got to cast esports events, announce BlizzCons, play in Rock Bands, write raps, and work with incredible people. But the biggest opportunity came in 2008 when I joined “Team 5.” The Hearthstone Team.

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.

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. 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.

We frequently check the Hearthstone subreddit looking for opportunities to improve the game. I have loved the silly memes, engaging in spirited debates, or even just being held accountable to our shared high standards for the game. We try to be highly available on social media, and I think our team helped push the envelope in this regard. It has been especially satisfying to me to see the team step up over the last few years and help engage in these ways as I became more focused on direction and less on actual design.

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.

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. 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.

Blizzard, thank you for taking a chance on me, and thank you for taking a chance on Hearthstone. I can’t wait to see what you do next.

And to the passionate community of players – I will miss you, and the laughs we shared together. Thank you for making being a part of Hearthstone so much fun for me. I’ve loved every minute.


Ben Brode

Ben Brode Rap Videos
We've included one of our favorite videos of Ben Brode! Be sure to check out the remix of his other rap, Un'Goro: The Journey.

This article was originally published in forum thread: Ben Brode Leaving Blizzard started by chaud View original post
Comments 120 Comments
  1. Santti's Avatar
    Whaaaaaat? Now that's sad. He's the best.
  1. huldu's Avatar
    Is that the guy behind diablo 3?
  1. Lorgar Aurelian's Avatar
    Seems raise sudden didn’t he just gave a new video about hearthstone?
  1. Pull My Finger's Avatar
    The sky is falling, he's leaving the sinking ship, WoW is dead - oh wait.
  1. Tehterokkar's Avatar
    He was my favourite Blizzard person ever. Sad to see him leave
  1. mmocad3e65e5d1's Avatar
    But, April's fool's been almost a month ago.
    Bummer, that's me probably done with Hearthstone. He was really the positive face of the game that made all of the team's fuckups seem irrelevant.
    Oh and the streams, what fun we had.
  1. Daedius's Avatar
    *Mandatory Sinking Ship post*
  1. Shampro's Avatar
    Hearthstone will be worst without him, if nothing else because of his charisma.
  1. Esper's Avatar
    Every time I see this senior developer at Blizzard that started 15 years ago as a Game Tester, WoW GM, Customer Service Phone Guy, or other simple hourly job... I am mad that I didn't happen to live in Irvine 15 years ago and be able to snag a sweet job that would last a lifetime.
  1. Jester Joe's Avatar
    This legit feels bad.

    It's like when Chris Metzen left WoW. There's just a certain level of enthusiasm both of them brought to the table that's going to be nearly impossible to replace.
    I have no doubt the game quality will stay the same, but yet it will feel a bit less joyful when it doesn't have his laugh bringing the news to us.
  1. Mathaios's Avatar
    Uninstalling Hearthstone now... :c
    What next, Jeff "from the Overwatch" Kaplan leaving OW?
  1. mmoc6d1dfa143f's Avatar
    Great news. Couldn't stand his fake laugh in all videos/streams.
  1. Lolsteak's Avatar
    Good, Never liked him
  1. Teri's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Mathaios View Post
    What next, Jeff "from the Overwatch" Kaplan leaving OW?
    That'd be great if he came back to Classic again.
  1. Friendlyimmolation's Avatar
    *sad Ben Brode laugh*
  1. McNeil's Avatar
    Thats so sad to hear. He's always been quite a fun and energetic guy who really cares for his games and community. I will remember his.. ''decent'' rap songs that he did in his free time

  1. ONCHEhap's Avatar
    rip flannel man
  1. Mayia's Avatar
    That is a massive loss for blizzard, he has more charisma than the entire blizzard staff combined then doubled.
    I do wonder if the Activision connection is once again forcing the people who believe in making good games leave and go else where, EA and activision ruin stuff over and over again.
  1. Wishblade's Avatar
    Well bugger... May he have good luck in the world ahead.
  1. In Ogres We Trust's Avatar
    Who cares, and why is this news?

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