Blizzard Expels Diablo IV Director and 2 Other Big Name Developers

| Aug 12, 2021
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In the latest move of the lawsuit fallout, Blizzard loses Diablo IV Director Luis Barriga, Lead Designer Jesse McCree, and WoW designer Jonathan LeCraft.

In the fallout from the sexual harassment lawsuit, Activision Blizzard faces more company oustings.

As the litigation of continues to plague the company, three more long-standing figures have been confirmed to part ways with the gaming juggernaut. Diablo IV Director Luis Barriga, Lead Designer Jesse McCree, and World of Warcraft Designer Jonathan LeCraft are listed as the departures from the studio, as reported by Kotaku.

Activision Blizzard did not provide clarity as to why these developers have suddenly left, but the news arrives on the heels of the company’s impending sexual harassment lawsuit filed by the California state, which saw other prominent Blizzard executives get the boot. This includes President J. Allen Brack, and HR representative Jesse Meschuk. The lawsuit alleges employees acted with discrimination towards women and promoted a sexual harassment workplace culture centered around a “frat boy” culture.

The “Cosby Suite” was allegedly a place where this culture could flourish at BlizzCon, which was alluded to in the lawsuit. This suite was home to a large framed photo of disgraced comedian Bill Cosby where Blizzard developers nourished this culture, centering around WoW Developer Alex Afrasiabi. The suite obtained its namesake due to it being a prime destination for the alleged harassment to ensue, and Afrasiabi, being named as the main culprit. The two mentioned developers, McCree and LeCraft were pictured in this infamous den of debauchery.

World of Warcraft released a statement on Twitter noting that they will remove all inappropriate references from the game, and all references mentioning Afrasianbi have since been extinguished from Azeroth. Blizzard’s Overwatch has a hero named McCree in honor of the developer, and it remains uncertain if he will get a new name.

A spokesperson from Activision Blizzard confirmed these high profile exits in an email statement “We have a deep, talented roster of developers already in place and new leaders have been assigned where appropriate. We are confident in our ability to continue progress, deliver amazing experiences to our players, and move forward to ensure a safe, productive work environment for all.”

Activision Blizzard continues to make headlines, they remain in the center of the storm.

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