In his latest weekly e-mail, Luc Barthelet has told us that he's leaving Maxis. The company that made The Sims is moving to a new location this week, and as it happens Luc is "also personally moving to new endeavors
". It's still going to be within EA though, but it will be a while until we'll hear from Luc again: "I can say is that it will take a few years to come out and it will probably involve the Sims and other EA properties in a completely new way.
" Also, he announced a bit for the next E3 in May 2004. Luc says there's going to be another console version of The Sims this fall, which will be announced just before the E3. During the E3, you will be able to see it. The Sims 2 will be there for a second time too, but this time it's possible to play the latest Sims game. The E3
is the biggest gaming exposition in the world, held on 11-14 May in Los Angeles. A lot of games press will be around checking out all the latest games. If Luc will be there too is unsure, but Neil Young, who produced EA hit 'Return of the King
' before, probably will be. He's taking over as General Manager at Maxis, doing what Barthelet has been doing since 1997. GameSpot has written an article
about that move too. Lucy Bradshaw, Executive Producer of The Sims 2, will now be sending several websites the latest and greatest of the Sims 2 every week. In the "Read More" bit, I've copied Luc's complete e-mail, for the fans...
"Maxis is moving this week from Walnut Creek to Redwood Shores, and as it happens I am also personally moving to new endeavors. Since I have kept all of you in the loop on everything that happens at Maxis, I wanted to make sure you knew it first before any public announcement in the next few weeks.
"My time at Maxis has been the most wonderful time of my life for I love the games we make and the individuals who make them. Everyone is so creative, smart and willing to do what it takes to make the best, that I will leave Maxis with unforgettable memories. Maxis is also the place where I learned to connect with you, the key leaders of a vibrant community that helps us make better games and an overall better experience inclusive of creators and leaders outside of Maxis.
"Timing is always a challenge in succession planning, but I leave with the knowledge that Sims2 is in great shape and will be the most exciting game of 2004. I cannot wait to see all of you play "The Sims 2 Body Shop" in the next few weeks and see the deluge of content that will come from your talented artists. I am also excited that you will be able to play the game at E3 in Los Angeles in May and experience for yourselves The Sims 2 as well as see our new Sims offering for Console for the fall.
"My next play is within EA and is a secret right now, all I can say is that it will take a few years to come out and it will probably involve the Sims and other EA properties in a completely new way. Ooops I am already saying too much.
"Replacing me in my role of "General Manager, Maxis" is my friend of many years Neil Young. Over the past few years, Neil managed Ultima Online, Majestic and Lord of the rings among other things at EA. Lucy Bradshaw continues to be the Exec Producer of The Sims 2 and she will replace my weekly emails by her own prose about the details of the game and with new pictures of the game.
"Thank you again for so many incredible years,
"Love you all,
From this place I, on behalf of The Sims Zone, want to wish Luc all the best in his new position at EA. I also want to thank him for all the things he's done in the past, making SimCity 3000 possible and fighting to get The Sims out.
Written at 12:50 on Thursday, 25 March 2004 by ChEeTaH