There’s been a changing of the guard at Daybreak’s Rogue Planet: Michael “Wrel” Henderson is leaving his post at the top of PlanetSide 2.
Wrel, the lead designer who took over as co-lead of Rogue Planet along with Chris Farrar when Andy Sites left the company back in 2021, was fairly well liked by the playerbase as a champion of the game at Daybreak. However, as PS2’s most public face, he was also blamed for everything that went wrong with the game, so his seven-year tenure at Daybreak generated detractors too.
“As much as I love this game, the past few years have burnt me out,” he says ruefully. “As I attempted to juggle the workload and all the stuff that goes on behind the scenes, I found myself making more mistakes and oversights that I should have. I’ve had less time for the actual fun creative part of game dev, and I think many of you have felt the impacts of that in some form or another during that time.”
In his farewell video, he notes that the PS2 team hovered around 20 people and that he ‘s been preparing it for his departure for the last six months. Wrel also tells players that there’s a roadmap for the rest of the year, though he warns of a “learning curve” and “things […] being more quiet than usual for a while.” Neither he nor Daybreak has named a successor, which seems odd if this has been planned for half a year, but he does hint that he’ll still be in the industry making games.
The PlanetSide 2 community – even those aforementioned detractors – have posted voluminous farewells on Reddit and YouTube, with many thanking Wrel for saving PlanetSide 2 and others expressing concern about the future of the game, particularly given the 2022 scaleback.
“As much as we disagreed with you, at least you cared more about this old ass game than you should’ve,” one player wrote.