Having unlocked virtually all of his career "achievements" at Harmonix as a designer on Rock Band
, Dan Teasdale is leaving the studio to pursue a more hands-on development job.
Teasdale, whose most recent position was lead designer on the upcoming Rock Band 3
, said he is leaving Cambridge, MA-based Harmonix on Friday to join Austin, TX-based independent developer Twisted Pixel, the company behind the Xbox Live Arcade game 'Splosion Man
"Working on something like Rock Band
basically allows you to auto-complete most of the achievements on your life list," Teasdale wrote on his blog
. "'Make a game with unique controllers,' 'Make a game I'm not sick of after making it,' 'Make a game that makes first parties do anything to help you' and 'Make a game that hits the zeitgeist' all got annihilated in the course of a few years."
Teasdale said that as he moved up through the ranks from staff designer to senior designer to lead designer, his career became increasingly hands-off in the creation of the game. He expects at Twisted Pixel, he'll have more of a direct impact on game design.
"I want to be able to help drive the vision and direction of a game, but at the same time be hands on and physically implement and iterate on the low level of making games in a more substantial way than time affords me when working as a lead on multi-hundred person titles," he said.
Teasdale said that all of the design work on Rock Band 3
is done, and it's on the "final path" to release. The game is due by holiday 2010.
At Twisted Pixel, Teasdale will be working on "a ridiculously cool new project" about which he offered no further details. The studio's website states that it is currently at work on the game Comic Jumper: The Adventures of Captain Smiley
. The studio also developed The Maw
and did contract work on an unannounced console MMO from Lord of the Rings Online