Blizzard veterans team up to form new game company

Former Blizzard CEO and co-founder Mike Morhaime launched a new video game company called Dreamhaven with several high-profile Blizzard veterans who have left the company over the last few years.

“I’m excited to team up with such talented people who care deeply about games and their communities,” Morhaime said in an announcement on Wednesday. “I’ve always believed in the power of games to bring people together regardless of backgrounds or boundaries. With Dreamhaven, we look forward to creating and sharing new experiences with players everywhere.”

Dreamhaven will launch with two development studios, which are both run by big names from Blizzard’s past. Moonshot Games is led by Jason Chayes, Dustin Browder, and Ben Thompson, while Secret Door’s staff includes Chris Sigaty, Alan Dabiri, and Eric Dodds. All of the names involved left Blizzard within the past two years.

Both studios are tiny at the moment, with 17 employees in total. While Dreamhaven is launching with a shoestring staff across its three entities, it is currently hiring more.

Dreamhaven serves as the publisher for the development studios underneath it. The company functions as a support system for developers as well, providing funding and guidance to its studios.

What games may come

Dreamhaven hasn’t yet announced its future plans or what games its studios are working on. Morhaime noted that both studios are in very early stages of new games right now and that neither studio is developing with platforms in mind yet.

The talent list gives some idea as to the types of games that might come from the studios. Moonshot Games’ Chayes was the production director on Hearthstone, while Thompson was the game’s creative director. Thompson’s credits also include World of Warcraft’s trading card game and Magic: The Gathering, packing the new studio with talent related to collectible card games.

“Though it’s very early days, when we think about Moonshot, we imagine a studio that celebrates curiosity and courage,” Chayes said somewhat cryptically in the announcement. “We aspire to be bold in our approach, and we think the best way to do that is to create a culture centered around trust.”

Secret Door’s staff played a major role in some of Blizzard’s iconic games. The team’s credits span titles like World of Warcraft, StarCraft, and Heroes of the Storm. There’s a wealth of multiplayer experience between the team’s leads, though no games have been announced yet.

With experience across real-time strategy games, MOBAs, and collectible card games, there’s a wide range of genres the studios could cover. The talent involved seems to indicate that Dreamhaven could become a home for the kinds of genres that helped Blizzard first rise to prominence.

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