Dreamhaven, the New Gaming Company Venture by Former Blizzard Founder Mike Morhaime
When Michael “Mike” Morhaime, co-founder and longtime president of Blizzard Entertainment, left the company on April 7, 2019, people in the esports and video game space thought they had lost one of their icons. But now, after just over a year, Morhaime has returned after announcing he has started a new Irvine, California-based game company called Dreamhaven, which has already established its first two studios in Moonshot and Secret Door. As long-time Blizzard fans will see, Morhaime has brought on some familiar faces to get Dreamhaven off the ground.
Moonshot will be led by industry veterans Dustin Browder, Jason Chayes, and Ben Thompson. Chayes, who has an extensive background in leading art teams, was previously an executive producer at Blizzard Entertainment where he led the Hearthstone team. Browder’s 25 years of experience includes roles as game director on StarCraft II, Heroes of the Storm, Command and Conquer, and The Lord of the Rings. Thompson’s resume, which includes having been the creative director on Hearthstone, an art director for the World of Warcraft trading card game, and more, brings together a team with many years of esports and gaming acumen.
In directing Secret Door, there will be another group of former Blizzard leads in Alan Dabiri, Eric Dodds, and Chris Sigaty, who have each worked on multiple “genre-defining” games. Sigaty worked in Hearthstone as its executive producer, with the same title in association with StarCraft II and Heroes of the Storm. Dodds, during his time with Blizzard, was the original game director of Hearthstone, while Dabiri has seen stints as both technical director and game director on Warcraft III, StarCraft II, and Heroes of the Storm.
Morahime is widely considered one of the pioneers in the esports scene after Blizzard’s StarCraft II became the catalyst for modern day esports. He has said publicly that StarCraft II was and to this day his favorite title and he wrote the introduction to the Starcraft Archive, a series of sci-fi novels which take place in the StarCraft II universe.
In fact, Morhaime once sponsored a StarCraft II event in Berlin, Germany, where he not only added personal funds to the prize pool, but ordered more than 200 pizzas to be delivered to players and fans attending the competition. This event (HomeStory Cup), oftentimes being described as a “family reunion” rather than a competition, gives some insight as to Morhaime’s beloved connection with Starcraft II and esports.
“I’m excited to team up with such talented people who care deeply about games and their communities,” said Dreamhaven CEO Morhaime in a release. “I’ve always believed in the power of games to bring people together regardless of backgrounds or boundaries. With Dreamhaven, we look forward to creating and sharing new experiences with players everywhere.”
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