This morning, John Vechey announced that after a great run of 15 years, he has decided to leave PopCap.
John is a rare breed. His personal vitality and true passion for fun helped to define the spirit of PopCap and the games they make. John’s leadership led to so many great things for PopCap, and he leaves behind a legacy of amazing games, powerful IP, and strong studio talent in place to lead the future of the studio.
The note below captures some thoughts from John that he shared with his PopCap colleagues this morning.
My Dearest PopCap,
Over the years we have laughed, we have cried, we have clinked gems, blasted balls, collected sun and went on an amazing win streak together. But, sadly, today my time at PopCap comes to an end.
Taking a sabbatical gave me time to get married, watch Izzy’s first steps, and take a step back to appreciate what I have in life, and what the future has in store.
When I founded PopCap my biggest goals were to have a good time and to make great games. PopCap's vision has always been to make people happy through games, and I believe we are achieving that every day. Today, I am proud of this company we have built together. Proud of the games we make and proud to have worked with all of you. I will miss you greatly.
The future is bright for PopCap. We have some amazing games live, with millions of people enjoying them every day. We have some great games in production, which will surprise and delight players over the coming year. We have a robust prototyping investment, which will fuel new brands and new games for PopCap for years to come.
The future is also bright for EA and I continue to believe in Andrew’s vision of a company that puts its players first. The best years are ahead for both EA and PopCap, and I look forward to watching development teams live up to what it means to be electronic artists.
So, what's next?
Many of you know me as the energetic, happy-go-lucky founder of PopCap, and I want to use that energy to give something back for awhile until I figure out what's next. I will be spending some time working with environmental news non-profit Grist.org, of which I am a board member. I’ll be taking some non-violence workshops, furthering some of the things I’ve learned from being part of the Quaker community, while I explore peace and social justice issues, such as war abolition, prison reform, poverty and the effects of race and gender privilege.
And after that? Who knows what the future will hold. Maybe I’ll stick with non-profit work, maybe start a new company, or maybe join a bigger one. For now, I’m going to focus on getting some space, so I can appreciate the last fifteen years. :-)
So, this is goodbye for now, PopCap. I will always love you.
Working with people like John is what continues to make this industry great: creative, talented, and always a lot of fun. We wish him nothing but the best as he steps away from PopCap and EA to pursue his other passions in life.
John leaves PopCap in deeply capable hands. The PopCap mobile studio will continue to be led by Steve Mauri, Cara Ely and Jon David, and the teams are already pushing forward into exciting directions. We have games in the pipeline including an all-new Peggle, new concepts coming through rapid development at PopLabs, and global opportunities for PopCap brands like PvZ. PopCap continues to be a core studio in EA’s mobile efforts, and I know our players will be thrilled with what’s to come from this talented group.
We thank John for all his efforts, and look forward to exciting new times ahead for PopCap.