Cliff Blezinski, who we all may know as Cliff, Cliffy B, or even the elusive King Cog, has decided to part ways with Epic Games after 20 years of dedicated service. An official announcement was made regarding his departure via a blog post through Epic Games saying the industry veteran has left to “chart the next stage of his career”.
20 years of service as a game designer for Epic Games, Cliff has been able to add a healthy shine to his portfolio by playing major hand in the development of games such as the infamous Gears of War saga, Bulletstorm, the Unreal series and, for those old enough to remember, Jazz Jackrabbit.
Blezinski has undoubtadly played a key role in shaping the industry into what it is today. Shortly after it’s release, Gears of War became the next shooter craze thanks to it’s gripping fight-for-hope apocalyptic storylines and overboard voilence and capturing the attention away from Sony’s own then recently released IP, Resistance.
Before that however, the legendary game designer had played a huge role in the Unreal franchise. One that spanned across a decade to become one of the much loved twitch-shooters and a favorite among the PC community.
Bleszinski had his own words to add:
I’ve been doing this since I was a teenager, and outside of my sabbatical last year, I have been going non-stop. I literally grew up in this business, as Mike likes to say. And now that I’m grown up, it’s time for a much needed break.
I will miss the projects, the playtests, the debates, and most importantly, the people. Epic only hires the best of the best, and it has been a joy working with each and every one of you on a daily basis, whether you were hired weeks ago or decades ago. I have been fortunate enough to collaborate with a variety of disciplines, from code to art to marketing and PR – it’s been one big, rewarding learning experience. I’m confident that each project that is being built, whether at Epic, Chair, PCF, or Impossible will be top notch and will please gamers and critics alike.
The leave comes as a surprise as the company not long ago announced their current involvment in a new IP, Fortnight, and their ongoing work with the Gears of War franchise which is readying up for another release with Gears of War: Judgement this March. Blezinski recently made rounds across media outlets after he expressed interest in creating a shooter in the vein of The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim through a community interview on Reddit.