Rockstar Co-Founder Dan Houser is Leaving the Company Next Month

Rockstar Games co-founder and Vice President of Creative Dan Houser is leaving the company next month. According to an SEC filing made by Take-Two today, Houser’s last day at Rockstar is March 11, 2020. Houser was apparently taking an extended break that began in spring 2019, but is now stepping away from the company for good.

After an extended break beginning in the spring of 2019, Dan Houser, Vice President, Creative at Rockstar Games, will be leaving the company. Dan Houser’s last day will be March 11, 2020. We are extremely grateful for his contributions. Rockstar Games has built some of the most critically acclaimed and commercially successful game worlds, a global community of passionate fans and an incredibly talented team, which remains focused on current and future projects.

Dan Houser was one of Rockstar’s co-founders, and a primary creative force and lead writer behind a majority of the developer’s biggest games and franchises, including Grand Theft Auto, Red Dead Redemption, Bully, Max Payne, and just about every title the company ever worked on.

Rockstar Games was founded by Houser as a subsidiary of Take-Two Interactive in 1998 with his brother Sam, as well as Jamie King and Terry Donovan who had all come over when Take-Two acquired BMG Interactive. Sam Houser currently remains on as President at Rockstar. Rockstar recently announced record-breaking sales number for both Grand Theft Auto V and Red Dead Redemption 2, the company’s two flagship products at this time.

Dan Houser was at the center of much of the Rockstar controversy surrounding studio crunch and “100-hour workweeks.” That controversy took over the conversation in October 2018 and caused a number of other studios, in addition to Rockstar itself, to examine workplace conditions. It’s a conversation that continues to some extent to this day, but it’s never quite reached the fever pitch that it did in the lead up to Red Dead Redemption 2’s release.

It’s unclear what Houser’s reason is for leaving Rockstar and whether or not it’s on good terms with the company. It’s also unclear how this impacts the trajectory and future outlook for Rockstar’s upcoming plans and products. We’ve reached out to Rockstar and Take-Two for more information. Take-Two’s earnings report is coming up this Thursday, so the company may end up making a public statement during that call.

[Source: SEC Filing]