Diablo IV gets new game director as Blizzard wades troubled waters

16-year Blizzard veteran Joe Shely is now Diablo IV's game director, will lead the game's development through troubled waters.

Published Fri, Oct 8 2021 3:35 PM CDT   |   Updated Tue, Nov 2 2021 6:03 AM CDT

Diablo IV gets a new game director following the departure of Luis Barriga in August.

Diablo IV gets new game director as Blizzard wades troubled waters 64 | TweakTown.com

Blizzard is slowly recovering from big culture shocks that have led to multiple talent leaving the studio (the company is facing four high-profile legal battles centered around discrimination, sexual harassments, and possible securities fraud).

Diablo IV's dev team in particular was hit hard with the departure of former game director Luis Barriga and game designer Jesse McCree. Now the company has announced a new director for Diablo IV that has been with the company for nearly two decades.

Joe Shely will now lead Diablo IV's game development and serve as game director on the project. According to press materials, Shely has been part of the Diablo IV team since 2017 and is focused strongly on the mechanics, themes, and features that players want most.

"He is highly focused on the player experience, keeping them top-of-mind throughout the game's development. Part of the team since 2017 Joe has been responsible for guiding efforts to deliver the deep, compelling systems and visceral combat Diablo is known for, and has been the overall caretaker of the combat experience. He also led the team responsible for the first playable demo of Diablo IV at BlizzCon 2019."

Shely says that he will help shape and form Diablo IV based around player feedback.

"Over the past few years, we've assembled a strong team with incredible passion for Diablo IV. You, Diablo's fans, are a critical part of this team. With the help of your valuable feedback, we've steadily refined and deepened the game experience. We have ways to go, and while much has changed, our commitment to the game is unwavering."

Blizzard still has no release date for Diablo IV. Internal disruptions, coronavirus interruptions, and other unforeseen consequences have driven a spike through the game's development, so it may not be ready until 2024 or thereabouts.

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Derek joined the TweakTown team in 2015 and has since reviewed and played 1000s of hours of new games. Derek is absorbed with the intersection of technology and gaming, and is always looking forward to new advancements. With over six years in games journalism under his belt, Derek aims to further engage the gaming sector while taking a peek under the tech that powers it. He hopes to one day explore the stars in No Man's Sky with the magic of VR.

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