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Blizzard co-founder Frank Pearce leaving studio after 28 years

Pearce founded Blizzard with Mike Morhaime and Allen Adham

Photo of Blizzard co-founder Frank Pearce sitting in front of a darkened company logo Blizzard Entertainment
Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

Frank Pearce, one of the co-founders of Blizzard Entertainment, is leaving the game developer after 28 years at the company. Pearce announced his departure from Blizzard in a joint statement with J. Allen Brack, the president of the company.

“The time has come for me to step away from Blizzard and pass the torch to the next generation of leaders,” Pearce said on Friday. He recounted the formation of Blizzard, originally known as Silicon and Synapse, with co-founders Mike Morhaime and Allen Adham, saying, “Looking back, I know how incredibly fortunate I was to have been a part of what Blizzard has become.”

Pearce was a programmer on Blizzard’s earlier titles, including The Lost Vikings, Blackthorne, Diablo and StarCraft. He later took on the role of chief development officer at Blizzard.

Pearce’s departure comes less than a year after Morhaime announced his departure from Blizzard. The other co-founder, Allen Adham, left Blizzard in 2004, but returned to the company in 2016.

Brack called Pearce an integral, though not always prominently visible, member of Blizzard.

“[M]any of you haven’t seen a lot of him publicly, nor seen the deep impact he’s had on Blizzard, and on the culture specifically,” Brack said. “But Frank has been here from the beginning, building and expanding the foundation and championing the values behind everything Blizzard does. Blizzard is better because of Frank Pearce.”

“I have worked very hard and very passionately for a very long time,” Pearce said. “Now it is time for me to reflect and be thoughtful about what comes next. I plan to spend more time active in the outdoors. I’d like to learn to play an instrument. I hope to devote more time to aspects of my life that may not have gotten as much attention in the past. One thing is for certain – I will continue to be a part of the Blizzard family.

“My request and hope for all of you is that you continue living the Blizzard values and that you be kind and respectful to one another as you experience what Blizzard creates in the future. Blizzard is a special place and a special community, and everyone with whom you interact is important to the Blizzard journey as it continues forward. Thanks to everyone for the wonderful past I have enjoyed, and thank you in advance for the great future I expect we will share.”

Correction: A previous version of this story identified J. Allen Brack as a co-founder of Blizzard instead of Allen Adham. This story has been updated to correct the error.