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Diablo 3 director exits Blizzard and game industry

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His tenure on Diablo 3 was controversial

Jay Wilson, whose credits include Diablo 3 and the Warhammer series, is leaving Blizzard Entertainment after 10 years at the studio. Wilson tweeted that he'll leave both his longtime employer and the game industry overall, instead pursuing another path.

"I'm leaving to pursue my original passion, writing," he said. "It's what I was doing when I fell into this job, and I've always wanted to return to it."

At Blizzard, Wilson most notably served as director of Diablo 3 for seven years. During that period, his public comments at times landed him in hot water with fans and former colleagues alike. Diablo 3 players directed complaints about technical flaws and design choices toward Wilson, but a Facebook comment the director made attracted the most controversy in 2012: In response to Diablo designer David Brevik's own issues with Diablo 3, Wilson called him a "loser" on the social network.

He later apologized to both Brevik and fans on the Battle.net forum, saying, "You deserve better than my reaction to Dave's comments. You deserve more honest communication about the game and what we're doing to make it a more awesome experience for us all."

Wilson left the project in early 2013, addressing his interactions with the game's community in a public letter.

"I'm proud of Diablo III, and despite our differences at times I will miss the community that has formed around it," he said in a goodbye post on Battle.net. "I feel I have made many mistakes in managing that relationship, but my intent was always to provide a great gaming experience, and be as open and receptive as possible, while still sticking true to the vision the Diablo team has for the game."

Following Diablo 3, Wilson worked on other games, like World of Warcraft expansion Warlords of Draenor. He was at Relic Entertainment prior to Blizzard, designing Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War and Company of Heroes.