The comings and goings of experienced and high profile game developer talent recently has been interesting to watch, what with Brian Reynolds (Alpha Centauri, Rise of Nations) departing online social game developer Zynga, and Warren Spector (Deus Ex, Disney Epic Mickey) leaving the sanctity of Disney representing but two of these instances. Where will they go? What will they do? The possibilities are exciting!
More recently, however, we’ve learned that Soren Johnson (Civilisation, Spore) has also left the employ of Zynga to join strategy game (and Windows app) developer, Stardock Entertainment.
Posting on the official forums for one of Stardock’s games, Elemental, while updating everyone on the progress of an in-development expansion to Elemental: Fallen Enchantress called Legendary Heroes, it was revealed that Soren Johnson would be joining the ranks of Stardock “at least for awhile” for oversee the studio’s games, with his designs affecting their games for the foreseeable future.
From the update by ‘Frogboy:’
“We’ve brought on board someone many of you know ‒ Soren Johnson (designer of Civilization IV) who has come to Stardock, at least for awhile, to oversee the design of all our games.
“Obviously, my boss, Derek… will still be the one to ultimately approve and massage these designs but we’re grateful for Soren’s help. So please give Soren a warm welcome. I think his impact on our upcoming (think 2014/2015/2016) will be pretty obvious.”
Soren Johnson is well-known in game development circles for his strong ideas on design and his approach to development, so here’s hoping he can help guide Stardock through the choppy waters it finds itself in following a string of shaky game releases.