Overwatch series director Jeff Kaplan is leaving Blizzard after 19 years, leaving fans of the series worried about Overwatch 2 and the future of the IP. The news comes the way of Kaplan and an official statement shared by Blizzard, and it also comes as a complete shock to fans. Kaplan has not only served as the director of the series, but he's been the face of it.
At the moment of publishing, it's unclear why Kaplan is leaving, but it appears to be on good terms. In his own statement, which was released as part of Blizzard's larger statement, Kaplan doesn't say much of consequence, but thanks everyone that has worked under, with, and for.
"I am leaving Blizzard Entertainment after 19 amazing years," said Kaplan. "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. Never accept the world as it appears to be. Always dare to see it for what it could be. I hope you do the same."
Stepping into Kaplan's role as director is Aaron Keller, someone who Blizzard describes as a company veteran and "a founding member of the Overwatch team." In the statement, Keller provides the following update on Overwatch 2.
"Speaking of Overwatch 2, development is continuing at a good pace," said Keller. "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."
While it sounds like we may hear more about Overwatch 2 soon, right now, fans are worried about the sequel.
Out of Nowhere
Was this as sudden and unexpected for you all as it was for us? That came outta nowhere.— Brian St. Pierre (@Kephrii) April 20, 2021
This was the nail in the coffin that makes me officially worried for Overwatch 2 https://t.co/ncMDAZcvQP— Toast VT (14/Any) (@StarvedToast) April 20, 2021
Overwatch 2 Coming Along Nicely
Overwatch 2 coming along nicely I see https://t.co/yy3TC2qnJX— Lulu🌈🎏 (@luulubuu) April 20, 2021
Personally I'm really sad about this because Jeff seems to be a great guy that's passionate about his work
I also pretty fucking scared about what this means for Overwatch 2 LOL https://t.co/Co78paHTFf— Niandra! (@Niandra_) April 20, 2021
Kind of Worrying
Jeff Kaplan was the face of Overwatch.
Kind of worrying that he's leaving a 20 year gig right before Overwatch 2 is supposed to come out. 😐 https://t.co/7HxEqVVWOy— Okami (@Okami13_) April 20, 2021
Not Sure How This Will Go
Jeff Kaplan has left Blizzard after being with the company for 20 years
The Overwatch and Overwatch 2 director and developer, Aaron Keller will now serve as the director for further updates to Overwatch and for the continued development of Overwatch 2
Not sure how this'll go. pic.twitter.com/bTvpAa6nY4— TRAFON(s Backup Account) (@RiseFallNickBck) April 20, 2021
Definitely a curious time for Jeff Kaplan's departure from Blizzard.
He was a VP of the division overall, and importantly the face of Overwatch. I've long been skeptical of the direction of its sequel. Now I'm very much intrigued to see how it's going when Blizzard shows more.. https://t.co/DAISfdH0rV— Dom (@DomsPlaying) April 20, 2021
Not Even Excited At This Point
Jeff Kaplan leaving Blizzard Entertainment following the other old veteran's that left beforehand is a big trouble for the company.
Personally I've lost complete trust in their products year's ago, and this domino effect won't probably get me excited to even check Overwatch 2. pic.twitter.com/NRXyjJ9Nb9— Voldson 🌐 (@voldson) April 20, 2021
It's Never Coming Out, Is It?
Overwatch 2 is never gonna come out pic.twitter.com/znsunojoX2— Jay P. (@JepperDay) April 20, 2021