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John Carmack Officially Exits id Software

Initially intending to do double duty with id and Oculus VR, the legendary programmer has decided not to split his time any longer.

A young John Carmack in his natural environment.

Perhaps it was inevitable, but it's still a strange thing to type: John Carmack has officially left id Software. He will now be working full-time at Oculus VR, working on the company's virtual gaming headset.

The news broke via a report from IGN, and was swiftly confirmed by Carmack on his twitter feed.

"I wanted to remain a technical adviser for Id, but it just didn't work out," he wrote. "Probably for the best, as the divided focus was challenging."

"John Carmack, who has become interested in focusing on things other than game development at id, has resigned from the studio," said id Studio Director Tim Willits to IGN. "John's work on id Tech 5 and the technology for the current development work at id is complete, and his departure will not affect any current projects. We are fortunate to have a brilliant group of programmers at id who worked with John and will carry on id's tradition of making great games with cutting-edge technology. As colleagues of John for many years, we wish him well."

Carmack, who co-founded id Software in 1991 alongside Tom Hall and John Romero, had been the mastermind behind the developer's various game engines, from the early days of Doom and Quake, up through the new id Tech 5 engine, which is expected to run the upcoming Doom 4.

Carmack took on a new role as Chief Technology Officer at Oculus VR back in August. The parent company of id, ZeniMax, initially released a statement acknowledging Carmack's new role, while assuring that "the technical leadership he provides for games in development at id Software is unaffected."

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Posted by BBAlpert

I still think John Carmack is the alternate dimension mad scientist version of Brad.

Edited by L33T_HAXOR

Goddamn. End of an era.

EDIT: I guess its kind of a bummer that he's leaving with Rage as his last official id game. But whatever, looking forward to see what he does with the Oculus folks.

Edited by ajamafalous

End of an era.

Edited by Amikron

Dat widescreen monitor.

Posted by shaz10010

QUICK! someone tell brad!

Posted by Hassun

I'm glad he can now work on something which is actually going places full-time.

Posted by joshwent

Can't imagine Id is very happy. Although, I'm sure Carmack has been less and less involved there for the past few months anyway.

Rage 2, engage!

Edited by ProfessorEss

It feels like where he belongs.

Edited by BeachThunder

id was founded in 1991? I'm sure Commander Keen was released in 1990...

Edited by csl316

Carmack's at his best when pushing boundaries. Seems Oculus is a more natural fit at this point. Sucks for id, good for him.

Edited by WarOnHugs

This is excellent news. Especially considering his comment at the g sync launch "I feel more like myself than I have in a long time." - John Carmack, Oculus VR

Posted by Hailinel

Probably for the best for him. As for id, they seem to have been floundering around ever since Rage was released.

Posted by AMyggen

Yeah, this had to happen sooner or later. It happened sooner. I'm sure this is a good move for him.

Edited by Stonyman65

Definitely an end of an era.

That being said, id has been dead for a while now - I would argue since Quake 3 - so Carmack going to Oculus is a good thing.

Posted by Alex

@beachthunder: February, 1991 is the company's official founding date.

Edited by mattman734

I would love to play a next gen game with John Carmack in the lead on the engine tech but his thing has always been working on technology not designing games. Its awesome that he is devoting his time to something completely new for the world but I hope one day he goes back graphics technology, if not just for the fact I want to hear him talk about it more. Awesome news for Oculas though I will definitely get one when its out.

Posted by TheHBK

I am pretty sure he got fired by Vince McMahon.

Posted by Shortbreadtom

What does this say about DOOM 4 though? Probably nothing, but I don't know how big a part Carmack was in the development of past id games.

Posted by CrystaljDesign

I highly recommend that anyone with even a passing interest in Carmack and first person shooters read Masters of Doom. He was a 19 year old punk with incredible talent and questionable social skills. Reminded me of the JP character from Grandma's Boy.

Edited by hfm

Thanks for two decades of good times in gaming. Thanks for handing us technical excellence and giving so many others the opportunity to learn, grow and enabling them to create fantastic games. Half Life among countless others you've influenced. Lets not forget all the open-sourcing of old engines that probably enabled many people to go "Oh.. that's how you do that..".


Posted by Oni

RIP id Software.

Posted by SpoogeMcduck

What does this say about DOOM 4 though? Probably nothing, but I don't know how big a part Carmack was in the development of past id games.

From what I've read it seems that Carmack didn't really have much to do with it, id seems to have had a lot of issues with no direction for Doom

Posted by RichardNixon

@oni said:

RIP id Software.

Took the words out my mouth, brother.

Edited by Kung_Fu_Viking

He's still splitting his time between Occulus and Armadillo though, right?

Posted by Tajasaurus


Posted by Marz

advancing hardware technologies seem more important than game engines nowadays, seems like he made the right move.

Posted by punkxblaze

Who the hell actually is still at Id these days? Didn't Hollenshead quit a year or so ago? So it's pretty much just Willits as far as named dudes.

Posted by Slag

Oculus Rift is frankly more exciting than anything Id is doing, can't blame him.

Posted by Vuud

Will the Rift end up being a flop? Will id EVER release another game? Really uncertain future for either. I guess there's just nothing at id Carmack thinks is worth his time, can't say I blame him.

Edited by GunsAreDrawn

I honestly think this is better for both of them.

Edited by John1912

Wow, so ID is kinda worthless now isnt it? It was heading down hill when he was there, now what are they going to do. I guess I dont know how much work he did on the Rage engine, but didnt he basically write the Doom 3 engine himself? Their game engines were half the companies value, and if he isnt there that seems like a huge blow to the technical side. Interesting to see him step out for a starter company like that though. Says a lot about the Rift.

Edited by ICantBeStopped

Good, maybe the good version of the Oculus can come out sooner with the increased focus.

Posted by CornBREDX

Smart move, although strange. I already called id's demise- passively. This just makes me more certain.

After Rage, and the reset of development on Doom 4, can id even turn it around now? It's strange, but it really doesn't feel like they're going to last much longer. Doom 4 has already been in development way to long.

Posted by ike7779


Posted by Deusx

I'd say this is a good thing for Carmack on a personal level, but I do not see Oculus going that far considering how primitive their look on the future of technology is. I know VR can be impressive, that said it is not a safe bet for the future of entertainment. It is resurrected technology that failed at one point for a reason. It's a company based on prototypes and concepts, not successful results. I may be wrong though, I'm just saying what's on my mind. I do not see VR as something groundbreaking or needed for how I enjoy entertainment in the future. They should just put all of that talent on to something else. Something that I would actually need later.

Posted by ArbitraryWater

@oni said:

RIP id Software.

I thought we were supposed to say that when RAGE came out.

Posted by DeadPan

Save us John Romero

Your our only hope!

Posted by yuen_biao_

Looks like he's about to revolutionize gaming the same way he did with inventing the FPS genre.

Posted by TheDarkOn3

That widescreen CRT is awesome, but that puck mouse was always shameful.

Posted by Baiard

I'm gonna be really sad if this means he won't be doing any more keynotes.

Posted by GreggD

@oni said:

RIP id Software.

I thought we were supposed to say that when RAGE came out.

I liked RAGE...

Posted by infantpipoc

With Oclus Rift finally fulfilling Carmark's dream of full immersion, can't blame him for leaving id behind.

Posted by ikabubu

@deusx: I'm also not convinced that VR headsets will replace a screen as my primary method of enjoying media. It is neat, and I think Carmack sees this as a career challenge. Can't blame him. With smarts like that, he's probably looking to apply it somewhere. And if VR doesn't go anywhere, I'm sure Carmack will find something else. No biggie.

Posted by Devildoll

I wish carmack the best of luck.

He is a freaking god amongst men, and oculus is going to be even more nuts now that he has got his fingers into the mix.

Edited by jasondesante

I hope the next step is Oculus and Valve becoming one or John going over to Valve. It would be a dream come true if Armadillo could get enough funding to pick back up again. Just have Valve pump some Steam money into Armadillo and then they can fly into space! :P

Edited by ChuckDeNomolos

This now has to end with Carmack rolling into Quakecon with NWO theme music playing

Posted by Brackynews

As someone who has an incredibly difficult time knowing when to quit a job before things suffer, I wish Carmack the best.

@oni said:

RIP id Software.

Also RIP the Oculus co-founder who died in the accident.

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