Darrell Rodriguez leaves LucasArts [UPDATE 1] 07 May, 2010 / 22 comments

Now this is a shock. Darrell Rodriguez, former President of the company, has left LucasArts today along with several members of his executive team. Kotaku reported the news, along with this note:

The moves, announced earlier today at a Lucasarts staff meeting, do not impact the company's development teams, or other aspects of its publishing business outside of the top brass.

I'll believe that when I see it. Traditionally a LucasArts president leaving coincides with a massive shift in their business plan, and a lot of cancellations and "staff reorganization".

Should we be afraid for Monkey Island 2: Special Edition? I wouldn't have thought so as that's pretty much in the can, doesn't cost anything in shipping materials and the first did really well. Other Special Editions though or re-releases we'll have to wait and see.

While the reasons for his departure are not known, like whether it was his choice or not, we can speculate. Since The Force Unleashed in 2008 LucasArts have not had a really killer game despite several in production, and have instead focused on "smaller" titles. Were the top brass at LucasArts annoyed at this? I bet they were. This is a real shame though, as those "smaller" titles included such things as an excellent new Monkey Island, long-wanted re-releases of old games, a new original game, and Special Editions of two games that have been crying out for SEs for years.

More as we get it. Despite messing up with Indiana Jones at the start, we'll miss you Darrell.

UPDATE 1: Apparently Darrell resigned, although there's not yet a reason why. Lucasfilm board member Jerry Bowerman (who has been high up at both EA and Sierra) will sit in the Emperor's chair until Grand Admiral Thrawn arrives to take over.

Source: Kotaku



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    gameboy on 05 Nov, 2010, 14:58…
    he accepted a job at IGT, a slot machine manufacture. WOW
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    daltysmilth on 08 May, 2010, 05:11…
    This is bad news indeed. On the other hand, nice Expanded Universe reference.
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    clone2727 on 07 May, 2010, 18:08…


    Who knows, maybe his next stop will be Sierra, until they re-release their adventure games...

    That's already been done at Good Old Games and Steam.
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    Kroms on 07 May, 2010, 16:09…
    As my granny says when she forgets to pour whiskey into her coffee, "This is pretty shitty." But I could be wrong. Hopefully, I am.
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    Twilo on 07 May, 2010, 15:03…
    "Were the top brass at LucasArts annoyed at this? I bet they were. This is a real shame though, as those "smaller" titles[...]"

    Leave the speculation out, it's not constructive
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    Remi on 07 May, 2010, 14:25…
    Not really much need to start wailing about this until we know the direction the new prez wants to take this.

    Rodriguez did a lot of good things, as far as the Mojosphere was concerned anyway. Seeing a chunk of the management team is going with him, two likely reasons for him leaving would be: A) He got a better job and is taking his team to build the management portion of the organization from scratch, or B) The powers that be pushed him out.

    If it was the latter, I suppose an episodic DOTT from TTG is out of the question. :~
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    Laserschwert on 07 May, 2010, 12:39…
    Who knows, maybe his next stop will be Sierra, until they re-release their adventure games...
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    Udvarnoky on 07 May, 2010, 12:37…
    Rodriguez seemed to be laying a solid foundation for a LucasArts that respected its back catalogue and was prepared to devote resources specifically to smaller, more experimental game ideas. I hope that new president does not deviate far from the promising path he paved.
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    elTee on 07 May, 2010, 12:20…
    This is hilarious! Goddamn. You wait a long time for a LucasArts president who's prepared to acknowledge the Monkey Island games at all, then when he arrives and business is on the up, he quits.

    I'm excited to see what happens next :D
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    Ascovel on 07 May, 2010, 12:12…
    From we hear the Monkey Islands were really successful - modest investment and relatively great sales - so I doubt they put the old IPs into the archive at this point.

    Jim Ward was the one truly harmful LEC president in terms of profits I believe.
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    Diduz on 07 May, 2010, 12:12…
    Baaaad news. :-(
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    SurplusGamer on 07 May, 2010, 10:41…
    Troubling news indeed. I can only hope this doesn't mean the end of the new, better LucasArts.
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    QueZTone on 07 May, 2010, 10:06…
    uh oh!
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    Thrik on 07 May, 2010, 09:55…
    Ouch, pretty sucky. From what I could tell he had a solid plan: less emphasis on massive budget-sucking games that were a bit shit, more emphasis on smaller innovative games which can be runaway hits, and limiting the Star Wars license to a small number of high-quality games rather than passing it around like a spliff.

    If I had to guess any reason for him being pressured into resigning it'd be that he hasn't let the company spew out crappy Star Wars games (which I'd imagine continue to be like cash cow faeces). But then he wasn't necessarily pressured — maybe he's doing a Will Wright and wants to start a new company with some of his key players.

    Granted it's not like he was the most risky president in history, with refurbishing absolute classics being fairly high up the 'guaranteed success' ladder nowadays. But he recognised that compelling internal development and more original IP is the way to go if LucasArts is to survive the long haul, and I hope his replacement doesn't lose sight of that.
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    Threepwood4life on 07 May, 2010, 09:24…
    Thanks for everything Darrell.You brought a little hope and happiness back to LucasArts for the short time you were there. Now what does the future hold???? (probably more bloody Star Wars games now)
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    black_sheep on 07 May, 2010, 08:58…
    Who's Jerry Bowerman? Good guy? Bad guy?
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    BillieJoe86 on 07 May, 2010, 05:37…
    I wonder why he quit... this came completely out of the blue.
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    Icebox on 07 May, 2010, 04:47…
    Re-Elect Governor Ward.
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    clone2727 on 07 May, 2010, 04:30…
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    Capn_Nacho on 07 May, 2010, 04:18…
    Ohhh man, this sucks big time. I hope this doesn't signal a return to the LucasArts of a few years ago...
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    valkian on 07 May, 2010, 03:41…
    This is really unexpected. He was doing quite well in my opinion and will indeed be missed. One can only hope that the next president is even cooler.

    And no, worry about MI2 at this point would be silly, but the future of SEs is unclear.

    EDIT: Cool, Mr.Schafer retweets Mojo
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    black_sheep on 07 May, 2010, 02:49…

    But seriously, No.

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