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Drew Karpyshyn, one of BioWare's more renowned writers who was the lead on the original Mass Effect and did some work on Star Wars: The Old Republic, has announced his second departure from the game-making studio. For the record, back in 2012 he left BioWare to work on the Chaos Born novels, and then came back in 2015.
For the time being, Karpyshyn intends to focus on original fiction and freelance game writing. Right now, he's working an a number of projects that include mystery-shrouded novels, a sci-fi graphic novel, and a collaboration with Fogbank Entertainment on a narrative-driven game.
Here's a blog post that offers some details:
Okay, time for my big announcement: I am leaving BioWare and striking out on new ventures!
Yes, it’s true. As of Friday, March 2, I am no longer an employee of BioWare/EA. Some of you might be thinking, “Wait, this sounds familiar!”. Yes, this is my second retirement from BioWare. Last time, I left to focus on my Chaos Born trilogy. This time, I’m leaving to pursue a number of other projects, including more original novels, an original sci-fi graphic novel I’m co-creating, and freelance gaming work.
I know a lot of you are wondering why I’m doing this. For many people, working at BioWare would be their dream job and they can’t imagine anyone stepping away from it. But it was time for me to move on.
Everyone who works at BioWare pours their heart and soul into the games they are making. It’s creatively demanding and – at times – exhausting. In the past, I’ve managed to juggle outside projects with my work at BioWare, but it always took a toll. And there were always outside projects I had to pass on because they would represent a conflict of interest with BioWare or EA properties.
So I made the decision to step back (again) and focus on my freelance work. I’d love to say more about the novel(s) I’m working on, or my graphic novel project, but those details will have to wait a while. (Yes, I’m using this announcement to tease other future announcements. In marketing, they call that “synergy”.)
But I’m not leaving games entirely. As of Monday, I’m officially working with Fogbank Entertainment and FoxNext Games. I can’t say a lot about what we’re up to yet, but here’s the official Fogbank Entertainment announcement.
I’m very excited to be part of the Fogbank team. I’ve worked with both Daniel and Alex before in my BioWare days, and I really like what they’re building. Obviously this release is a bit cryptic, but as more details of what I’m working on get announced, I’ll be sharing them on my Twitter feed and here on the NEWS page of my website.
Moving forward, I expect to start making semi-regular posts here, and not just about the projects I’m working on. One of the great things about being a freelance writer is I can write about… well, anything. So maybe I’ll react to politics or sports (and piss a bunch of people off). Maybe I’ll give my opinion on certain movies or TV shows (and piss people off). Maybe I’ll talk about my golf game or my favorite places to eat in Austin (and bore people). Maybe I’ll write posts about my creative process, using mysterious references to unreleased projects (and piss people off). And maybe (definitely) I’ll be posting information about any conventions I’m attending or public appearances I’m making or interviews and podcasts I’m doing. (Another benefit of going freelance is more free time to interact with my fans.)
So there you have it. Please don’t e-mail me asking for more information about why I’m leaving – there is no dirty laundry I’m just waiting to air. And please don’t ask about any BioWare projects I’ve been working on – just because I’ve left BioWare doesn’t mean I’m going to start blabbing all their secrets.
I’m sure people will read more into this statement than there really is, but there’s not much I can do about that.I know some people are going to dwell on the past, but that’s not my style. I’m looking to a bright future, and I hope at least some of you will enjoy where this journey leads!