Tim Willits had been with id Software since the days of the original Quake, which is why it was such a surprise when he stepped down from his role as studio director last month. But now we know where he’s ended up. Willits is now the creative boss at Saber Interactive, which has worked on titles like World War Z and NBA: Playgrounds, and even partnered with id on Quake Champions.
“I am excited to announce that on August 1st I became the chief creative officer of Saber Interactive,” Willits says on Twitter. “I will be leading the creative vision of our five studios around the world.” He also adds that “I’m excited to start working with such great teams!”
“Being with a studio for 24 years, it’s really hard to leave,” Willits tells Fortune in an interview published alongside the announcement. “It’s almost like a marriage, for lack of a better description… [But] I saw how Saber, as a team, was starting to grow and expand and pick up teams and studios. It was a good time to move over.”
Under Willits, Saber’s five studios – accounting for over 400 employees – will work to expand the company’s existing player base and develop new IP. (No word on whether he’ll have any cameos in his own titles here, though.) Willits says he grew to admire Saber’s (relatively) smaller development teams during id’s collaboration over Quake Champions.
“The agility of small teams and the opportunity to get stuff done quickly can’t be overstated,” Willits says. “I’m not saying anything bad about Bethesda – I love them – but smaller teams are exciting and fun. When someone has a good idea, we jump on it. If it doesn’t work out, we change it quick.