Overwatch game director Jeff Kaplan leaves Activision Blizzard

After 19 years under the Activision Blizzard umbrella, Overwatch game director Jeff Kaplan is leaving.

“(It) was truly the honor of a lifetime to have the opportunity to create worlds and heroes for such a passionate audience,” Kaplan said in a statement released by the company.”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.”

Aaron Keller, a founding member of the Overwatch team, was named to replace Kaplan on Tuesday.

“Jeff’s been a great leader, mentor, and friend, and he knows how much we’re going to miss him,” Keller said in a news release. “I’ve been lucky to work alongside him and the rest of the Overwatch team for many years in building something that continues to inspire people all around the world, and I’m honored to carry the torch forward.”

Keller, who was been with the company for 18 years, also provided an update on Overwatch 2.

“Development is continuing at a good pace,” he said. “We have an exceptional vision we’re executing on, the reaction from many of you to the updates we shared at BlizzConline thrilled us, and we have exciting reveals planned for this year and beyond as we ramp to launch. We’ll be sharing more frequent updates about Overwatch 2 progress and new features in the live game with you all very soon.”

–Field Level Media

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