Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2's creative director & narrative lead have been fired

Longtime Vampire: The Masquerade writer Brian Mitsoda and Bloodlines 2 Creative Director Ka'ai Cluney have suddenly been removed from the project and fired from Hardsuit Labs.

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Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 is a much anticipated jump back into the Dark Universe and continuation of the popular RPG narrative between vampire clans in modern day Seattle. Unfortunately, some massive news today does not bode well for the game. Narrative lead and longtime face of the Vampire: The Masquerade series Brian Mitsoda has been fired from work on Bloodlines 2 by developer Hardsuit Labs and publisher Paradox Interactive. Additionally, Bloodlines 2 Creative Director Ka’ai Cluney has been fired along with him.

The rather surprising announcement was made on the Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 website on August 19, 2020. According to the post, the firing of both Narrative Lead Brian Mitsoda and Creative Director Ka’ai Cluney was a joint decision reached by leadership at Hardsuit Labs and Paradox Interactive.

“We appreciate, and value, the contributions of Brian and Ka’ai, which were instrumental in establishing the game's storyline and dark tone and have helped to ensure that we are making a true successor to the iconic Bloodlines,” the statement reads. “We wish them both the best in their future endeavors.”

In place of both Mitsoda and Cluney for the time being, Creative Consultant Alexandre Mandryka has been brought in to take the reins on Bloodlines 2. Mandryka is a veteran in the industry who has been involved in the launch of titles from franchises such as Prince of Persia, Rainbow Six, Far Cry, Warhammer 40K, and more.

The firing of Mitsoda in particular is surprising, and apparently was so even to the Vampire: The Masquerade veteran himself. In a statement which was provided and can be read in full on Rock Paper Shotgun, Mitsoda expressed frustration and shock that this is “where it ends” for him on Vampire: The Masquerade:

Brian Mitsoda has been a longstanding voice in the direction and narrative of Vampire: The Masquerade. It will be unfortunate to see Bloodlines 2 to launch without his direction behind it.
Brian Mitsoda has been a longstanding force in the conception and narrative of Vampire: The Masquerade. It will be unfortunate to see Bloodlines 2 to launch without his direction behind it.

It’s unfortunate to say the least, and even more eyebrow-raising given the fact that Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 was just delayed to 2021 shortly after being revealed to be coming to next-gen systems like the Xbox Series X. Mitsoda has been a driving force behind the series and has been heavily involved in marketing for the game. Despite the fact that Bloodlines 2 will still heavily reflect his vision, it will weird to see that it launches without Mitsoda. With Cluney being gone as well, it’s safe to say the game has lost two incredibly major voices in its ongoing direction.

As we wait to see what comes of the change and Alexandre Mandryka’s direction of it, stay tuned for more details on Bloodlines 2’s development on the way to its supposed launch in 2021.

News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. When he's not handing out beatdowns in the latest fighting games, exploring video game history, or playing through RPGs with his partner, he's searching for new food and drinks in the constant pursuit of good times with good people inside and outside the South Texas area. You can also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

From The Chatty
    • reply
      August 19, 2020 10:38 AM

      Wondering on what's outside!

    • reply
      August 19, 2020 10:43 AM

      Holy shit, that's crazy...! I feel bad for these folks. Seems to have come from nowhere? That said, I don't know the whole story.

      Hope the game is good too. :|

    • reply
      August 19, 2020 10:43 AM

      Owwwwwww.

      I don’t want to think this, but can’t help feeling like anything offbeat or risky about this game has just been flushed down the toilet by the focus group fueled bean counters. Sucks. :(

      • reply
        August 19, 2020 10:47 AM

        Ugh look at their replacement’s CV: https://ca.linkedin.com/in/alexandremandryka

        Yeah, my interest in this game has now plummeted. I’d rather have a quirky VtM game than a slick, denuded one, though.

        • reply
          August 19, 2020 12:35 PM

          It's gonna be a censored all to fk and back, trainwreck of a monstrosity.
          I'd almost bet money on it.

          One of the few games I was really looking forward to.

          I guess there's still Cyberpunk...

    • reply
      August 19, 2020 12:32 PM

      fn hell...

      The Island of Dr Moreau... the game.

    • reply
      August 19, 2020 12:35 PM

      Welp, hopefully the fans can make this game good like the first one

      • reply
        August 19, 2020 1:35 PM

        Bah the original was fine on launch from a content perspective (if you could survive the bugs)

    • reply
      August 19, 2020 12:50 PM

      Wasn't Mitsoda and his pitch the only reason they got the gig in the first place?

      • reply
        August 19, 2020 4:47 PM

        To be fair, having a good pitch to start with does not equate to having good leadership or management skills to finish.

        Either way this sucks. Total bummer for what was one of my most anticipated games :(

    • G D mercury ultra mega
      reply
      August 19, 2020 4:54 PM

      Preorder cancelled :(

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