BioWare just lost another Lead Producer. Following the departure of Anthem’s Ben Irving last week, Fernando Melo, Lead Producer on the upcoming Dragon Age 4, has confirmed that he’s also out.
Melo was a Senior Producer on Dragon Age: Origins and Dragon Age 2, and became the Director of Online Development in 2011. He started work on the ill-fated online component of Mass Effect: Andromeda in 2015, and was ultimately made lead producer on the latest Dragon Age, which was officially announced late last year.
In a Twitter thread, Melo made it clear that the split was “his own decision”, as he wants “time to disconnect and explore a couple ideas for the next chapter in my career.” He also attached an email he sent to his colleagues at BioWare, which promised that Morrison (the codename for Dragon Age) is shaping up to be the “definitive Dragon Age experience.”
He wrote in his email:
With a great leadership team in place, a fantastic creative vision, and some of the best devs in the world, Morrison is well underway to becoming the definitive Dragon Age experience – and I’m incredibly proud and honoured to have played a part in that. I’ll be eagerly awaiting the opportunity to experience the next DA as a fan this time around.
This news comes days after Irving announced his departure from the studio after eight years for a role at a new video game company. Just as Melo made it clear he believes Dragon Age has an exciting future, Irving thinks Anthem still has the chance to thrive going forward.
Irving wrote on Twitter: “I believe Anthem has a bright future – there is a great team working on it and I look forward to following its progress (and playing it!) from the sidelines.” He added that the game remains in safe hands with Global Community Leads Jesse Anderson and Andrew Johnson, who will continue to support the game and community going forward.
(1/4) Today was my last day at BioWare. After 12 years.. that's a heck of a lot of feels. :)
Tonight I got to write my name up at our local pub, alongside many other amazing peers over the years, and it reminded me of a lot of folks no longer here that I miss dearly. pic.twitter.com/MFQELPM2jr
— Fernando Melo (@DiscoBabaloo) August 17, 2019
It’s unclear who’ll be replacing Melo as Lead Producer on Dragon Age 4, or exactly how Melo’s deaprture will impact the project (if at all).
We’d previously heard (thanks to a report from Kotaku)that the latest Dragon Age has had a fairly long and troubled development process, but Melo’s words don’t seem to indicate that the progress (or lack thereof) on Dragon Age 4 had anything to do with his leaving.
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Ewan Moore is a journalist at UNILAD Gaming who still quite hasn’t gotten out of his mid 00’s emo phase. After graduating from the University of Portsmouth in 2015 with a BA in Journalism & Media Studies (thanks for asking), he went on to do some freelance words for various places, including Kotaku, Den of Geek, and TheSixthAxis, before landing a full time gig at UNILAD in 2016.