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    Uncrowned Guard

    Blizzard's New Era: Johanna Faries Takes the Helm

      TL;DR: Johanna Faries, formerly associated with the Call of Duty franchise, is set to become the new president of Blizzard Entertainment. This change in leadership follows the departure of Mike Ybarra and occurs amidst broader organizational changes post Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard. Faries, with her extensive background in the NFL and her successful stint at Activision, is poised to bring fresh insights to Blizzard. Her appointment has stirred excitement within the gaming community, especially among fans of Blizzard's renowned titles like World of Warcraft, Overwatch, and Diablo. Faries is committed to respecting the unique aspects of these games while steering Blizzard towards a future filled with innovation and success.

    Leadership Transition at Blizzard

    Blizzard Entertainment, a subsidiary of Activision Blizzard, is set to welcome Johanna Faries as its new president. Faries, who previously held a pivotal role in the Call of Duty (CoD) franchise, will be stepping into the position following the departure of Mike Ybarra. Ybarra's exit comes amid significant changes within Activision Blizzard, including nearly 2,000 layoffs, following the company's acquisition by Microsoft in a deal valued at $69 billion. Faries, who brings a wealth of experience from her tenure in the National Football League (NFL) and her leadership roles in Activision, will take the helm of Blizzard next week.

    Faries' Background and Vision for Blizzard

    With a rich history in the NFL and significant achievements in Activision, particularly as the head of CoD's esports division and later as the general manager of the franchise, Faries is well-positioned to guide Blizzard through its next chapter. Her appointment is expected to resonate strongly within the communities of Blizzard's popular games, including World of Warcraft (WoW), Overwatch, and Diablo. In her communication with Blizzard staff, Faries acknowledged the unique characteristics and demands of Blizzard's diverse game portfolio, expressing her intention to respect and enhance these beloved gaming universes.

    Faries’ Upcoming Initiatives and Blizzard’s Future

    Starting February 5th, Faries will officially assume her new role at Blizzard. She plans to engage directly with the team and the broader Blizzard community, starting with a town hall meeting on the Blizzard campus. In her message to the staff, Faries emphasized her admiration for Blizzard's legacy and the transformative power of gaming. She expressed enthusiasm for collaborating with the team to drive innovation and success. Faries' vision for Blizzard is one of empowerment, collaboration, and a commitment to forging a bold and bright future, underlining the potential for new and legendary achievements in the gaming world.

    Image Credit: Blizzard Entertainment

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    I don't know how to take Faries.  She seems decent, but she also comes from the esports side of Activision and while I would be excited about that... the Call of Duty League is barely surviving now that they made the league exclusive to YouTube and shut down watch parties and the Overwatch League is dead (sure, I don't know how much she affected the Overwatch League, but I'd hope an in-company CEO of Esports would step in to try and help one of the best esports games ever made not die on the Blizzard side).

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