Vicarious Visions Staff Reveal They Will be Fully Merged with Blizzard Entertainment


Vicarious Visions are fully merging into Blizzard Entertainment and losing their name, according to sources with knowledge on the matter.


Speaking to Polygon, anonymous Vicarous Visions staff claim they were told about the merge on the morning of October 27th by Activision Blizzard during a meeting. Vicarious Visions had already merged with Blizzard Entertainment in January of this year as a supporting development team (and acquired by Activision in 2005). However, this merge will result in the studio fully merging, and losing its name.

Staff told Polygon they initially believed the merger meant they would continue to operate as their own studio despite being owned by Blizzard Entertainment. Suspected new names include Blizzard Albany, as Blizzard Entertainment have used for other satellite offices around the US, but a new name has not been announced.

Those who spoke to Polygon said they were not surprised, one stating the “writing was on the wall.” Another however was disappointed by the lack of transparency and sudden announcement.


“For all of the leadership’s talk about being more transparent in response to the lawsuit and resulting fiasco,” stated one staff member. “The fact they decided to blindside us all with this feels about as far from transparent as you can get.”

Some staff were also critical the announcement came during what was otherwise a “light and quick” meeting, when more serious matters would not typically expected. Some had even come into work in Halloween costumes as part of a costume day.

Nonetheless, staff did not expect much to change at the company, and leadership allegedly stated no layoffs were currently planned. Even so, some had unanswered questions. Activision Blizzard did not respond to comment from Polygon.


Vicarious Visions was founded in 1991, and have previously worked on Spider-Man 2: Enter Electro, Game Boy Advance versions of Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2 and 3Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 4, Star Wars Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast, Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy, Crash Bandicoot Purple: Ripto’s Rampage, and Spyro Orange: The Cortex Conspiracy.

Games made after becoming a subsidiary of Activison and Blizzard include Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1 + 2and Diablo II: Resurrected.

In August this year, Blizzard Entertainment President J. Allen Brack stepped down as part of the ongoing Activision Blizzard sexual harassment and discrimination lawsuit. You can find our latest coverage on that here. Brack was replaced by Mike Ybarra and Jen Oneal as co-leads; the latter being a former Vicarious Visions studio head.

Image: Wikipedia [12]



Taking his first steps onto Route 1 and never stopping, Ryan has had a love of RPGs since a young age. Now he's learning to appreciate a wider pallet of genres and challenges.