Things aren’t looking good for Blizzard.
Activision Blizzard, the video game maker, said on Tuesday that the president of its Blizzard Entertainment studio was stepping down immediately and that its head of human resources was also leaving, as the company grapples with the fallout from allegations of workplace harassment and discrimination.
Activision, known for Call of Duty and other popular gaming franchises, has been under pressure since the State of California sued it on July 20. The lawsuit accused the company of fostering a “frat boy workplace culture” in which men joked about rape and women were routinely harassed and paid less than their male colleagues.
Many of the misconduct accusations in the lawsuit focused on the Blizzard division, with which Activision merged through a 2008 deal with Vivendi Games.
The departing executive, J. Allen Brack, will be replaced by two Blizzard executives, Jen Oneal and Mike Ybarra, who will be co-leaders of the studio, Activision said in a statement. Mr. Brack was mentioned in the lawsuit as an executive who had failed to take “effective remedial measures” when sexual harassment and discrimination complaints were brought to him.
Jesse Meschuk, the head of human resources, is also “no longer with the company,” the company said. News of Mr. Meschuk’s departure was reported earlier by Bloomberg.