Wizards of the Coast hires games industry vet James Ohlen to open new studio in Austin

Gaming veteran has been lured once more to the commerce he took a break from last yr with an opportunity that was too good to refuse — he’ll be working a model new studio based in Austin, Texas, for , the Renton, Wash.-based creators of “Dungeons & Dragons” and “Magic: The Gathering.”

Ohlen, a 23-year veteran of the video games commerce, beforehand labored on “Baldur’s Gate,” “Baldur’s Gate 2,” and “Neverwinter Nights,” all based mostly totally on the “D&D” universe. The earlier BioWare ingenious director will most likely be charged with ingenious development of a mannequin new IP at Wizards.

“I didn’t suppose that I might be coming once more to the sport commerce so rapidly nevertheless working with Wizards is a as quickly as in a lifetime various,” Ohlen acknowledged in a data launch Wednesday. “Our mutual love of RPGs, world-building, and interactive storytelling is a perfect match.”

In an interview this week with , Ohlen, who’s already residing in Austin, acknowledged he had been turning down most gives to get once more to work, nevertheless a reputation from Wizards President Chris Cocks sounded intriguing.

“D&D has been an unlimited a component of my life since I used to be eight years outdated,” Ohlen instructed GamesIndustry.biz. “The Baldur’s Gate video games have been very personal to me, and Star Wars is one different issue I actually like. … That’s merely an opportunity to work on initiatives as personal to me as the nice ol’ days of the ’90s and early ’00s. It was most likely the most pleasant. I used to be a bit of little bit of a workaholic, because of this of I cherished it. And Wizards is giving me an opportunity to return to these personal initiatives.”

Cocks acknowledged that Ohlen is changing into a member of Wizards paintings a important time inside the evolution of the company, which is a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc.

“James brings experience in ingenious path and studio administration which will present very important as we look to develop compelling new experiences that work together gamers throughout the world,” Cocks acknowledged inside the data launch.

With a worthwhile historic previous in tabletop video games and shopping for and promoting enjoying playing cards, Cocks added inside the GamesIndustry.biz interview that the 1st step will most likely be to “assemble a franchise which will endure, like Magic and D&D” after which decide the applicable platforms for the model new world to particular itself.

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