Respawn co-founder and Apex Legends game director Chad Grenier has announced he is leaving the studio after eleven years. "After helping to co-found the studio, bring the Titanfall universe to life, and launch the incredible experiment that is Apex Legends—it’s been an unforgettable ride to say the least," writes Grenier. "But today, this crazy chapter comes to an end."
Grenier's list of game credits includes some of the most influential first-person shooters ever made, and goes all the way back to the original Call of Duty. He also played key roles on Modern Warfare and its first sequel, before Titanfall and Titanfall 2, before working as game director on Apex Legends.
"Apex Legends is in great hands and I feel like I can walk away knowing this game and community will continue to be taken care of," writes Grenier. "We’ve got years worth of content in flight, and I can’t think of anyone better than Steven Ferreira to take over as the game director and make sure it’s done right. Steven joined as a lead on the Apex Legends team shortly after launch in June 2019, where he’s been running half of the team and serving as my right hand for the other half."
I'm also saying goodbye to coworkers who some of which I've worked with for half my life, and others I never got to meet in person.I wish everyone at Respawn the best. There is unbelievable talent at the studio so I know they'll continue making great games I'll love playing. pic.twitter.com/5H8PcLuBJPDecember 3, 2021
Grenier hasn't indicated what he's going to be up to next, though one imagines the first priority is several months off. "Even after all this time, I feel like a kid leaving the nest, and, as corny as it sounds, leaving a family behind. I’ll be bringing the experience and lessons learned from this incredible group to everything I do down the road. It will probably be tough to see the game continue to thrive and succeed in my absence, but that’s a good thing."
It's something of a time of renewal for Apex Legends, which remains in rude health (and, whisper it, arguably the best BR out there). Grenier's departure comes alongside the news that Jason McCord, design director of the game, is also leaving Respawn. He's "going to walk the Earth for a bit and recharge."
Today is my last day at @Respawn. 11 years, 11 seasons of Apex, 11 shipped maps. I thought that was neat.It's tough to leave a game and a team that you love.But, it's time to do something new. No plans quite yet. Going to walk the Earth for a bit and recharge. Stay tuned! pic.twitter.com/qLKA2iXca9December 3, 2021
The last thing Grenier did on social media before announcing his departure was to share Respawn's September tweet, sparked by reports that the Titanfall series was being mothballed. Well, in the case of the original Titanfall, that's arguably true. But in terms of the series' future, Respawn says merely: "Contrary to what some folks are reporting, Titanfall is the very core of our DNA. Who knows what the future holds..."