Diablo 3 game director Jay Wilson has left the project to work on something new at Blizzard.
Wilson, who had been working on the action role-playing game for a whopping seven years, said he had "reached a point creatively where I'm looking forward to working on something new".
He added: "This decision was not an easy one for me, and not one I made quickly, but ultimately it's what I feel is right."
In a post on Battle.net Wilson assured fans that his departure from Diablo 3 will not negatively impact Blizzard's support for the game, which released in May last year. Plans for the future, he said, will carry forward as normal. Wilson said he will remain available to the Diablo 3 team during the transition period as a replacement is found.
Since Diablo 3's release Wilson has enjoyed an up and down relationship with fans. Despite the game selling over 10 million copies, it has been criticised for its always-online requirement, its end-game and itemisation.
"I'm proud of Diablo 3, and despite our differences at times I will miss the community that has formed around it," Wilson said. "I feel I have made many mistakes in managing that relationship, but my intent was always to provide a great gaming experience, and be as open and receptive as possible, while still sticking true to the vision the Diablo team has for the game.
"I know some of you feel we fell short of our promise to release the game 'when it's ready'. While we're not perfect, we try to make the best decisions we can with the information and knowledge we have at the time. That doesn't mean we always make the right decisions, but if we made a mistake then I feel we've made an exceptional effort to correct it.
"This is what you can always count on from Blizzard: that we will stand by our games and make every effort to continually improve them over time. We heard the feedback and suggestions from the community. For example, we agreed that Diablo 3's itemization at launch was not good enough, so the team made numerous changes, including changing drop rates, re-tuning legendaries, and adding scores of new items to the game. We also agreed that the end-game needed more depth, so the team added new events, and new systems like Monster Power and Paragon levels.
"Our commitment to making our games as good as they can be is what has always defined Blizzard as a game studio, and that commitment never ends for us at a ship date. With your help, we'll continue to play, debate, and improve Diablo III, as we've done with every Blizzard game."
He concluded: "I'm leaving Diablo III in good hands, and my departure will not jeopardize the progress of the game as we continue to do what we do: listen, play, and improve.
"You are the most passionate, dedicated group of gamers a designer could hope to have. I wish you all the best, and want to thank you for making this an amazing experience for me. Keep your axes sharp, your spell books handy, and that crafty devil in check."
Prior to joining Blizzard entertainment Wilson worked at RTS specialist Relic Entertainment as lead designer on Warhammer 40k: Dawn of War.