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Pete Hines retires from Bethesda, other key personnel leaves

Bethesda’s Head of Publishing calls it quits
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Pete Hines, the Senior Vice President and Head of Publishing at Bethesda, has decided to retire, the company announced.

In a statement about the move, Bethesda praised his “authenticity, integrity and passion.”

“His contributions have been integral in building Bethesda and its family of studios into the world-class organization that it is today,” the company’s social media said. “His vision helped push us forward, and his hard work inspired us. We’re thankful for his 24 years of leadership and wish him the best in this next chapter.”

Pete Hines during a game presentation.

Pete Hines was one of Bethesda's most public faces.

Joining Bethesda’s marketing department in 1999, he was credited for his role for the first time in Sea Dogs, which was released in 2000, and appeared in the credits for most Bethesda games since. Naturally, his latest mention in the credits has come with Starfield, where he’s listed as Senior Vice President and Head of Publishing.

Hines himself stated on social media: “I am retiring and will begin an exciting new chapter of my life exploring interests and passions, donating my time where I can, and taking more time to enjoy life. This was not a decision I came to easily or quickly, but after an amazing career, culminating in the incredible launch of Starfield, it feels like the time is right.”

He wrote that this “is certainly not goodbye by any means” and that his “love of Bethesda and its people has never wavered.” Hines is looking forward to experiencing upcoming adventures from the publisher alongside the fans, he stated.

“Working with the amazing people, teams, and studios at Bethesda has been the greatest experience of my life. I’m incredibly proud of everything we have done together, and I’m genuinely excited to see the amazing things they will create next,” he concluded.

With Hines, Bethesda is losing one of its most public figures aside from Todd Howard.

A little less public is the departure of another key figure in the company, Starfield’s Lead Quest Designer Will Shen. He’s been working on the quests of Bethesda’s RPGs since the days of Fallout 3 and is now joining Something Wicked Games.

This studio was co-founded and is led by former Bethesda producer Jeff Gardiner and has attracted talented RPG makers from the likes of Bethesda, BioWare, and Obsidian to create its debut title, a dark fantasy RPG called Wyrdsong. Shen joins this project as the Lead Content Designer, he told Game Developer in an interview.

It’s not unusual for personnel to leave after a big, multi-year project is finally shipped, so this by itself is nothing fans of Bethesda need to be overly concerned about.