Secret Blizzard game adds Hearthstone director to dev team

Hearthstone game director Ben Lee is leaving the game to join an unannounced Blizzard project.

Lee announced the news on the Coin Concede podcast (opens in new tab) (via Inven Global (opens in new tab)), assuring that Hearthstone will remain in good hands despite his departure. “I’ve been working on Hearthstone for almost 3.5 years now, and it’s been an honor and a pleasure to work on the game,” Lee said. But I’m going to be leaving the team.”

Lee joined Blizzard and started leading development on Hearthstone in December 2018, having served as development director at Cyberpunk 2077 studio CD Projekt Red and lead game designer at Conan Exiles studio Funcom. With his latest move, Lee confirmed that he’ll be staying at Blizzard, but that he’ll be “working on something different that I’m really excited about starting on.”

Lee added that the transition from Hearthstone to another Blizzard project has been in the making for “some time.” It’s unclear what he’ll be working on, but we know the studio is developing a now-untitled survival game set in “a whole new universe.”

As for completely unannounced games, Blizzard posted job listings to its careers page recently asking for applicants with experience in tabletop RPGs to work on an unannounced project based on an existing IP. While it doesn’t appear Lee has an overwhelming body of work in the TTRPG space, he definitely has experience leading development teams, so it’s possible he’s been hired in a similar capacity to work on that project.

As for Hearthstone, Lee suggested that current Hearthstone executive producer Nathan Lyons-Smith will be stepping into directing shoes in Lee’s absence. He also teased new card types and a “big character coming at one point in this year.”

Here are some games like Hearthstone to play when you just want to deck around.

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