When Diablo III’s creative lead Jay Wilson announced his departure from the Diablo III team, the general attitude around the internet, and the Battle.net forums in particular, was one of celebration. Mostly, people were happy to say goodbye and good riddance to the person who they feel was responsible for Diablo III’s most egregious issues – including persistent online play, the Real Money Auction House and the uninteresting combat. Blizzard’s chief creative officer, Rob Pardo has come to Wilson’s defence – asking you to direct your hate towards him instead.
“I know that the Battle.net forums have earned a reputation for rough justice, but I do not believe justice is being served by how people are speaking about Jay’s departure from Diablo III.
I am very proud of the Diablo franchise and what the team was able to accomplish with Diablo III. As a gamer I have enjoyed the game and played for many, many nights with friends and family. I’m not, however, going to use that as an excuse. The Diablo community deserves an even better game from Blizzard and we are committed to improving it. We have a talented team in place and have no intention of stopping work on Diablo III until it is the best game in the franchise.
I’m the only person in this thread who has actually worked with Jay. I hired Jay to head up the Diablo project and had the pleasure of getting to work with him, both in building the team and designing the game. He has great design instincts and has added so much to the franchise with his feel for visceral combat, boss battles, and an unparalleled knack for making it fun to smash bad guys. I’ve worked with many, many designers at Blizzard and Jay is one of the best. He has a great career at Blizzard ahead of him and I guarantee that you will enjoy Jay’s game designs in future Blizzard games.
If you love Diablo as much as we do, then please continue to let us know how you feel we can improve the game. If you still feel the need to dish out blame, then I would prefer you direct it at me. I was the executive producer on the project; I hired Jay and I gave him advice and direction throughout the development process. I was ultimately responsible for the game we released and take full responsibility for the quality of the result.”
Pardo’s admirable redirection might actually be working. Though his statement is well reasoned, one doesn’t have too look too far to find a fair it of internet vitriol directed his way.