Veteran BioWare Designer, Having Worked on Baldur's Gate and KOTOR, Leaves After 22 Years

Another prominent member of BioWare's old guard hits the road.

News by Nadia Oxford, .

Veteran BioWare designer James Ohlen is leaving the company after 22 years. Ohlen was the lead designer on some of BioWare's most celebrated games, including Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, Baldur's Gate 1 and 2, Dragon Age: Origins, and Neverwinter Nights.

Ohlen announced his departure yesterday on Twitter, where he said he "needs to take a break from the industry and work on something a little smaller and more personal." In fact, he already has something lined up: A Dungeons & Dragons sourcebook called Odyssey of the Dragonlords.

"The most fun I've ever had at BioWare was as the lead designer on Baldur's Gate 1 and 2 and Neverwinter Nights," Ohlen tweeted. "I've been a D&D fanatic since I was 10 years old and I want to be a part of it again."

There's been a small exodus at BioWare as of late: Dragon Age's creative director Mike Laidlaw departed the company last October. General manager Aaron Flynn left a year ago, and Dragon Age lead writer David Gaider departed in January of 2016 after 17 years with the company.

BioWare's biggest priority right now is Anthem, but it says it's still doing background work on the next Dragon Age title. Anthem arrives in February of 2019, and once its launch is over and done with, we might get a better idea of where BioWare is headed.

By the way, we have a guide to everything you need to know about Anthem. Spend some quality time with it.

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Comments 6

  • Avatar for NateDizzy #1 NateDizzy 9 days ago
    This is a big reason I don't really care about Bioware games anymore. Without the people who made the titles I love(d), Bioware just becomes a name.
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  • Avatar for CK20XX #2 CK20XX 9 days ago
    It's looking like Bioware is going to be the next in a long line of companies axed by EA. I don't have any faith in Anthem. In fact, at E3, though it looked like a nice enough game, EA seemingly went out of their way to make it appear boring.
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  • Avatar for mugen17 #3 mugen17 9 days ago
    @CK20XX Bioware makes bad shooters. I don't know why EA wants them to make shooters instead of RPGs
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  • Avatar for dard410 #4 dard410 9 days ago
    @mugen17 "Why should Bioware concentrate on the types of games that made it famous and respected amongst both gamers and developers? Wouldn't it be better to use Bioware to make generic shooters in a market already crowded with 500 other shooter games? After all, we didn't acquire Bioware because we wanted their talented staff. We just needed a few more office drones." - EA Executive
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  • Avatar for NotCarolKaye #5 NotCarolKaye 8 days ago
    Doesn't want to see Third Person Destiny through to release?

    I don't blame him.
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