The big news lately – Ghostcrawler (Lead Systems Designer Greg Street) is leaving Blizzard.
First thing is – good for him. Anyone who has the ability and the bravery to move on to something bigger (and hopefully better) has my admiration.
In reading the various forums, I have found quite a bit of venom spewed at Ghostcrawler. He doesn’t deserve any of this, and the people who use their internet anonymity to spew this crap are, for the most part, vile, small-minded sheep.
Greg Street became the face of Blizzard by making himself accessible, whether by posting in forums or, more recently, through Twitter. He held conversations with players on their likes and dislikes in the game. More often, it was the dislikes since the people who like the game rarely take the time to go on Twitter and say so.
Because he made himself so available, he became the symbol that people focused on. Players who overestimate their intellect would throw their thoughts up on Twitter and expect Greg Street to simply agree with them or bow to their unbreakable logic. Of course, this rarely happened, which led to great gnashing of teeth as people felt ignored.
Mr. Street was a great asset to Blizzard as he could stay level-headed in the torrent of inanity and vomit spewed at him. I personally could not bear to read most of the Twitter feed because much of what I read often made me ashamed of the human race (or at least the gaming part of it). I would not have lasted a week in Mr. Street’s position without going postal.
Those who blame all of the game’s woes on Mr. Street are simply not thinking through the vast complexity of game design. However, in him they found a scapegoat. Thus, the herd of internet cattle have banded together to take their final shots at his back as he rides off into the sunset.
Here’s to you, Greg. Thanks for everything you have done. The fact that I still play for hours every week and give my $15 a month like clockwork is all the evidence needed to show how the game has succeeded. The fact that the haters pay their subscription fees too is even greater validation.