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This too shall pass

Eight years ago, I got hired by Blizzard Europe, to work on the website. Two years later, I got to join the Irvine headquarters, in order to work on World of Warcraft.

And at the end of this week, I will leave that company, in order to go work for Google in the Mountain View headquarters.

That decision was not an easy one, far from it. I mean, as a kid, I was always fascinated by video games, and I revered Blizzard games. I made a point during my education to learn as much as I could about what it takes to make a video game, and I kept being an enthusiast gamer. To that day, I still remember my first steps in Azeroth, playing an Orc warlock, and marching towards Orgrimmar, in order to go and meet Thrall. I was jumping on my chair from the sheer excitement as I was able to meet the character from Warcraft 3 that I used to love. And a few months later, I was working for the company that made that game.

Getting employed by Blizzard was a kid's dream come true. Working in an environment surrounded by video games, and various rock stars of the gaming world is but a blast. That studio sure is a difficult place to beat when it comes to where's the best place to work. And I sure had a ton of fun there. And it deeply changed me, both from a personal and a professional aspect. I even got a tattoo out of it to prove that my experience there left a deep, deep mark. That body modification on my shoulder is a testament of the modifications that happened internally during my time there. This mostly come from the people who are working there. I've met and worked with some of the most talented people ever, and they make you feel right at home. The Blizzard family is a fantastic one, extremely passionate, loving and caring, and even as they learned that I was leaving, they showed incredible support.

So why leaving then ? Well, it's a good question, which would take a lot of effort to answer in full, more than I am willing to spare in order to do that on that blog. There are obviously a lot of factors involved in that decision, and if you want to discuss them more, feel free to meet me so we can discuss that over a beer or so. But it was definitely not a no-brainer. A lot of introspection was needed for it, and I've lost some sleep over it. I guess the easy answer is that I outgrew the little kid that I was then. I had an epiphany a few months ago that eventually led to the realization that I needed a break from the gaming world, if not definitely. I'll still be a gamer, and I'll still play video games, but they won't be central to my life anymore, and fill most of it. I guess that's a kind of burn out. That, and also Google's offer was very interesting. Maybe one day I'll come back to doing games, I don't know. Who can really know what the future is, and what life has in store for me ?

But for now, I am walking away from crafting games, letting the steam vent off. I'll continue doing what I like doing, which is writing cool software. But no game shall be directly involved. At least for a while.

/me bows