Activision Blizzard Has Let Go Three Senior Developers Following Allegations - VRGyani News and Media

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Thursday, August 12, 2021

Activision Blizzard Has Let Go Three Senior Developers Following Allegations

Content Warning: This article contains mentions of alleged sexual harassment and sexual assault.

Controversy has followed Activision Blizzard since the state of California sued the publisher for harassment against staff members and developers within the company and for discriminatory hiring practices. The lawsuit alleges that Activision Blizzard committed acts that are "a violation of state civil rights." The Washington Post reported that the employees of the company alleged there was a "frat boy culture" that included heavy drinking.

After Kotaku initially reported that three senior developers at the publisher — Diablo 4 Director Luis Barriga, Lead Designer Jesse McCree, and World of Warcraft designer Jonathan LeCraft — were let go following the allegations, IGN was sent an official statement by Activision Blizzard confirming the news:

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.

Kotaku reported that the news was received by the development teams, and that the names of the developers let go were no longer in Blizzard's internal directory. The anonymous source speaking to the site stated Activision Blizzard gave no official reasoning for the sudden departures.

RELATED: Activision Blizzard Employees Stage Walkout After Lawsuit Alleges Harassment, Pay Discrimination, and Toxic Work Environment

McCree and a designer for Diablo 4 were spotted in the infamous photograph of the "Cosby Suite" that was obtained by Bloomberg. In the article from Bloomberg, the nickname for the suite in the photo was purported to be based on a joke about how ugly the carpet in the room was in 2013 before actor Bill Cosby was accused by several women of rape. However, several sources in Blizzard mentioned to Bloomberg that this origin is disputed.

Barriga had been one of the leading parties involved in the promotion for Diablo 4 since it was announced at Blizzcon 2019. There is currently no release date for Diablo 4, but Diablo II: Resurrected will launch on Xbox Series X|S, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and PC on September 23. Meanwhile, Fergusson, who oversaw the development of Gears of War 4 and Gears 5, left The Coalition to join Activision-Blizzard in February 2020 to oversee the entire Diablo franchise.

KEEP READING: 'Diablo II: Resurrected' Open Beta Announced With Starting Dates



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