WoW Lead Designer Leaves to Work on Unannounced Blizzard MMO

Nathan Grayson

Looks like Blizzard’s shadowy new MMO is kicking it into high gear. Today, World of Warcraft lead designer Jeffery Kaplan finally typed /gquit of his own accord (and didn’t end up naked in the middle of Orgrimmar) – leaving behind World of Warcraft in favor of Blizzard’s “unannounced MMO.”

“I wanted to take a moment to let the community know that I’ve switched roles here at Blizzard to work on our upcoming, unannounced MMO. World of Warcraft has been such a central part of my life these past six and a half years, and it’s success would not have been possible without the tremendous community around it, so I wanted to say thank you to all our players who’ve shared this amazing experience with us so far,” Kaplan said.

Does this mean that WoW is taking an exceedingly slow drive over to the retirement home, though? Kaplan said no, but in a far less succinct manner.

“I still plan to be very involved with the future course of World of Warcraft, but will leave the day to day operations of World of Warcraft to my partners in crime, Tom Chilton and J. Allen Brack.”

Unfortunately, if Blizzard’s “ one frontline release per year ” strategy holds up, we probably won’t actually play this game – or maybe even hear anything about it – until at least 2011, assuming StarCraft II hits in 2009 and Diablo III in 2010.

In other words, don’t cancel your WoW subscriptions just yet, folks.

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