23/09/2020

The studio head behind Gears 5 is leaving to join Blizzard and oversee the Diablo franchise. Rod Fergusson is a veteran of both Microsoft and Epic Games. He also had a hand in the Bioshock franchise.

Veteran game developer Rod Fergusson is leaving The Coalition, where he helped lead the team behind Gears 5. His next role will be with Blizzard, where he will oversee the Diablo franchise. Fergusson announced the move today via Twitter.
Leaving is bittersweet as I love our Gears family, the fans, and everyone at The Coalition and Xbox, Fergusson said. Thank you, it has been an honor and a privilege to work with you all.
Starting in March, I will join Blizzard to oversee the Diablo franchise. Leaving is bittersweet as I love our Gears family, the fans, and everyone at The Coalition and Xbox. Thank you, it has been an honor and a privilege to work with you all. pic.twitter.com/0FuO3RFYSQ
Rod Fergusson (@GearsViking) February 5, 2020
Fergussons career in the games industry started with Microsoft in the 1990s. In the early 2000s he joined Epic Games, where he participated in the development of the Gears of War franchise. In 2015, he joined The Coalition, the studio that Microsoft put in charge of Gears of War after buying the franchise from Epic Games. The Coalitions name is a nod to the Coalition of Governments (COG) from the Gears of War lore.
Gears 5 launched at the end of 2019 to critical and commercial success. Our review called it an unexpected open-world journey that excels just as well when its quiet and introspective as it does when its as loud as a (Cole) train.
Fergusson joins Blizzard at a turbulent time for the developer and publisher. Entering 2020, Blizzard has been rocked by a series of public relations disasters related to the companys response over protests by professional Hearthstone players and the state of its latest title, Warcraft 3: Reforged.
But the company did announce Diablo 4 at Blizzcon last November. The dungeon-crawler is far and away Blizzards most mature franchise, and also one of its most commercially viable series.
Diablo 3 had a rocky life after its 2012 launch, and was widely panned by critics and derided by fans. Fergusson, who has delivered satisfying AAA games at scale for Epic and Microsoft, seems like a strong addition to help finish Diablo 4. The game does not currently have a release date.