Pete Hines, head of publishing at Bethesda Softworks and the second-most prominent face of the company that makes Fallout, The Elder Scrolls, and Starfield, is retiring. Hines announced his departure from Bethesda on Monday after 24 years with the company, indicating that he was exiting the gaming industry.
“After 24 years, I have decided my time at Bethesda Softworks has come to an end,” Hines wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter. “I am retiring and will begin an exciting new chapter of my life exploring interests and passions, donating my time where I can, and taking more time to enjoy life. This was not a decision I came to easily or quickly, but after an amazing career, culminating in the incredible launch of Starfield, it feels like the time is right.”
In a statement from Bethesda, the company wrote, “Pete’s public presence was only a small part of his role at Bethesda, although the way he represented us carried over into the values he nurtured here: authenticity, integrity and passion. His contributions have been integral in building Bethesda and its family of studios into the world-class organization that it is today. His vision helped push us forward, and his hard work inspired us.”
Hines has been a prominent spokesperson for Bethesda for the past two decades, appearing on stage at industry events like E3, QuakeCon, and Gamescom to pitch and promote games from Bethesda Game Studios, id Software, Arkane Studios, MachineGames, and other developers under the publisher’s umbrella. Hines also had a pretty good established schtick on social media of writing fake doctor’s notes that would, in theory, excuse Bethesda fans from work or school so they could play the company’s new releases on launch day.
In tribute, the official Bethesda account wrote a note excusing Hines from any future work. In other words, Hines’ departure sounds more than amicable.
Hines’ tenure as senior vice president of global marketing and communications at Bethesda, a title he held until November 2022, had its share of controversy. In 2016, Bethesda announced in a since-deleted blog post that it would no longer distribute pre-release copies of its games for critics and other media. The company would later walk back that decision. Bethesda has also reportedly blacklisted outlets like Kotaku for the past decade for reporting details of unannounced games. Earlier this year, Bethesda was called out for withholding pre-release review copies of Starfield from established outlets like Eurogamer, The Guardian, and Edge.
As Hines noted, Bethesda just recently launched its latest title, the space-exploration role-playing game Starfield. It was nearly eight years in the making, and was first revealed to the public in 2018. Bethesda Game Studios is also committed to delivering a new Elder Scrolls game, currently titled The Elder Scrolls 6, which isn’t coming until at least 2026, according to a report from The Verge.