Two big bits of news were announced on the BioWare Blog today: First, that general manager Aaryn Flynn is leaving the company after 17 years. And second, that Casey Hudson, who left in 2014, is “coming home” to assume the role.
It sounds like Hudson’s return was in the cards prior to Flynn’s final decision to leave, and actually helped him settle on it. “I have been contemplating changes in my own life for some time, but when I heard that Casey had confirmed he was up for the task, I realized the opportunities before us,” Flynn wrote in a blog post announcing his departure. “I will be working with him over the next couple of weeks to help catch him up and do my part to set him up for success to be the best GM he can be.”
“Let me thank our players for everything they’ve given us over these many years, and to say from the bottom of my heart how important you are to me and the rest of BioWare. I have gone to work every day knowing that I am fortunate to have all of the opportunities I have had at BioWare because of you,” he concluded. “Doing whatever I could to help our developers create some of the best games in the industry for you all has been the most humbling experience of my life.”
Welcome back, @CaseyDHudson.
All the best, @AarynFlynn. It’s been an honor.
— Mike Laidlaw (@Mike_Laidlaw) July 18, 2017
As for Hudson, he said in his own message that his years away from BioWare has been “transformative for me, from having time to reflect on what I most want to do, to working with new technologies at platform scale.”
“I’d also like to wish my good friend Aaryn Flynn the very best in the future. Aaryn and I have worked together from the earliest days of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, to setting the foundation for Anthem. We’ve been through a lot together, and we’re all going to miss his presence at the studio.”
Hudson’s BioWare credits include Baldur’s Gate 2, Neverwinter Nights, and KOTOR, but Mass Effect was his Big One: He served as project director on the entire original trilogy. Flynn’s record goes back just as far as is possibly even more extensive; he took over as BioWare GM in 2009, right around the release of Dragon Age: Origins.