Heather Hazen named Studio Head; Next mainline game in the world-famous Sid Meier’s Civilization franchise in development
2K today announced that industry veteran and Firaxis Games Chief Operating Officer, Heather Hazen, has been promoted to Studio Head, ushering in a new era of development at the legendary interactive entertainment studio behind Sid Meier’s Civilization, XCOM, and the recently-released and critically-acclaimed Marvel's Midnight Suns.
As Studio Head, Hazen will manage Firaxis Games' development teams and lead its mission to build the best strategy games on the planet. With 22 years of experience in gaming and entertainment, Hazen joined Firaxis Games in 2020 as the studio's Chief Operating Officer. Prior to Firaxis Games, she was an Executive Producer on Fortnite at Epic Games, as well as Plants vs. Zombies and Bejeweled while at PopCap Games. Hazen’s promotion comes as longtime Firaxis Studio Head, Steve Martin, will be leaving the studio after more than 25 years with the organization.
"We are excited to welcome Heather Hazen as the new Studio Head of Firaxis Games, and believe she will continue to drive the success Firaxis has consistently delivered as part of 2K’s independent studio model," said David Ismailer, President of 2K. "2K and Firaxis Games are deeply grateful for the foundation that Steve Martin set during his time at the studio, shepherding more than 30 game launches across three genre-defining franchises, and for ensuring a smooth transition for Heather into her new role. Firaxis is one of our company and industry’s most renowned studios, and we are confident that the team will continue to do great things under her leadership."
"I'm thrilled to have this opportunity to carry on the studio's storied legacy, beginning with the announcement that Firaxis is in development on the next iteration of the legendary Civilization franchise," said Hazen. "I’m lucky to be working with some of the best developers in our industry, and we have plans to take the Civilization franchise to exciting new heights for our millions of players around the world. In addition, we will continue to support Marvel’s Midnight Suns with post-launch content, and explore new creative projects for our teams.”
Ed Beach will continue in his role as Creative Director on the forthcoming Civilization. Beach has been an integral part of the development of Civilization titles for more than 15 years, and most recently led the design of Civilization VI, the best-selling Civilization game to-date. The Civilization franchise is one of gaming's most definitive and decorated franchises, with more than 65 million copies sold to-date.
In addition, Jake Solomon, former Creative Director of the XCOM franchise and Marvel's Midnight Suns, will be departing the studio. Solomon leaves after over two decades at Firaxis Games, and was instrumental in revitalizing the tactical turn-based genre with the releases of XCOM: Enemy Unknown, XCOM 2, and Marvel's Midnight Suns.
“I’m embarking on a new chapter; however, I am incredibly grateful to have had the opportunity to fulfill my dreams at Firaxis Games,” said Solomon. “I’m thankful to everyone who enjoyed XCOM and Marvel’s Midnight Suns, and to my development and publishing partners who helped bring those games to life.”
“Jake revolutionized tactical turn-based games and continually raised the bar for storytelling in the strategy genre,” added Ismailer. “We have deep appreciation for his work and can’t wait to see what he does next.”
Firaxis Games is a 2K studio. 2K is a wholly owned publishing label of Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. (NASDAQ: TTWO).
About Take-Two Interactive Software
Headquartered in New York City, Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. is a leading developer, publisher, and marketer of interactive entertainment for consumers around the globe. The Company develops and publishes products principally through Rockstar Games, 2K, Private Division, and Zynga. Our products are currently designed for console gaming systems, PC, and Mobile including smartphones and tablets, and are delivered through physical retail, digital download, online platforms, and cloud streaming services. The Company’s common stock is publicly traded on NASDAQ under the symbol TTWO.
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Founded in 2005, 2K develops and publishes interactive entertainment for video game consoles, personal computers and mobile devices, with product availability including physical retail and digital download. The Company is home to many talented development studios, including Visual Concepts, Firaxis Games, Hangar 13, Cat Daddy Games, 31st Union, Cloud Chamber and HB Studios. 2K’s portfolio currently includes several AAA, sports and entertainment brands, including global powerhouse NBA® 2K; renowned BioShock®, Borderlands®, Mafia, Sid Meier’s Civilization® and XCOM® franchises; popular WWE® 2K and WWE® SuperCard franchises; as well as the critically and commercially acclaimed PGA TOUR® 2K. Additional information about 2K and its products may be found at 2K.com and on the Company’s official social media channels.
About Firaxis Games
Founded in 1996, Firaxis Games is a world-renowned game development studio with an unwavering mission to “build games that stand the test of time." Home to legendary game designer Sid Meier, Firaxis Games has developed some of gaming's most successful and award-winning titles including the Sid Meier's Civilization© franchise, XCOM© franchise and Marvel's Midnight Suns. Firaxis Games is a 2K studio; 2K is a wholly owned publishing label of Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. For more information, visit www.firaxis.com.
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Alan Lewis (Corporate Press)
Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc.