Though there is no clear "face" for the Call of Duty franchise like Cliff Bleszinski is for Gears of War or Ken Levine with BioShock, if one needed to be labeled as such it would be Robert Bowling. As Creative Strategist for Activision and Infinity Ward, Bowling has been the Modern Warfare series' hype machine, helping gamers better understand all of the new features for each year's iteration.
Unfortunately, as revealed by Bowling yesterday, that tried and true tradition is no more. Bowling has left Activision and Infinity Ward, and will no longer be serving as Creative Strategist for the Call of Duty franchise. No mention of where he might be going in the future, or why he has left was made, only a to-the-point, 140-character message revealing his departure.
While this isn't a devastating hit to the extremely popular series, it certainly is a shocking turn of events. As was said before, Bowling was seen as the connection between the Call of Duty property and the public at large, and now without him the series will certainly be at a loss.
Sure, Bowling didn't contribute to the record-breaking sales, but his enthusiasm for the franchise was quite infectious, and did well to get us excited for a series that doesn't do all that much to innovate. His detailed looks at the hot new features for Infinity Ward's next Call of Duty will sorely be missed.
Luckily, as is the case any major player in video games shifting careers, this opens up speculation as to where Bowling will land next. Obviously the top candidates would have to be developers whose key focus revolves around games with a large multiplayer following, but that's where Bowling is headed. At the moment Respawn Entertainment, created and staffed by former IW members, is gearing up for a major product unveiling, so maybe Bowling can find a perfect fit there.
There are a lot of opportunities out there for Bowling, and plenty of developers that would like to see him have similar success hyping up their properties, so we imagine the offers are only just beginning.
Where would you like to see Robert Bowling take his talents? Should he shack up with the enemy and join either Respawn or maybe even DICE?
Source: Robert Bowling