WotC WotC Has A New President

With outgoing president Chris Cocks being promoted to the top job at Hasbro, WotC has a chief -- Microsoft's Cynthia Williams! Williams is joined by Tim Fields as Senior Vice President.

Over at Microsoft, Williams was General Manager and Vice President, Gaming Ecosystem Commercial Team and was heavily involved in Xbox growth. Fields was CEO of mobile gaming studio Kabam Games.

Cynthia_Williams_Photo.jpg


Hasbro, Inc. (NASDAQ: HAS) today announced that Cynthia W. Williams has been appointed President of its Wizards of the Coast and Digital Gaming division and that Tim Fields has been appointed Senior Vice President and General Manager of Digital Gaming, both effective February 21, 2022.

Ms. Williams joins Hasbro from Microsoft, where she most recently served as General Manager and Vice President, Gaming Ecosystem Commercial Team, and most notably drove the expansion of Xbox Gaming and the acceleration of game-creator growth. Prior to joining Microsoft, Ms. Williams spent more than a decade at Amazon, where she led the global growth of their e-commerce direct-to-consumer business Fulfillment by Amazon.

Mr. Fields joins Hasbro from Kabam Games, one of the most successful mobile gaming studios in North America, where he served as CEO for the past five years. Under his leadership, Kabam developed and operated numerous AAA games, including Marvel Contest of Champions, Disney Mirrorverse, Fast and Furious and Transformers: Forged to Fight. A 26-year veteran of the video game industry, Tim has held a range of leadership positions at major publishers, including Capcom, Microsoft and Electronic Arts.

Chris Cocks, current President and Chief Operating Officer of Hasbro’s Wizards of the Coast and Digital Gaming division, said: “We are extremely pleased to welcome Cynthia and Tim to the Hasbro family. They join at an exciting and dynamic time, and Wizards of the Coast – as well as all of Hasbro – will greatly benefit from their skills and experiences. Cynthia brings a deep understanding of technology and e-commerce, along with cloud and console-based gaming. She has a proven track record, across both Microsoft and Amazon, of scaling businesses to drive profitable growth. Her experience is highly complementary to Tim’s, who brings to Wizards unmatched production experience and a demonstrated ability to accelerate the growth of brands in mobile gaming.”

“I am extremely proud of our team and the great successes we’ve had across our Wizards of the Coast and digital gaming business over the last five years, and also of the IP we’ve created to attract top talent in our space,” Mr. Cocks continued. “As I transition into my new role as CEO of Hasbro later this month, I am excited to partner with Cynthia and Tim, working together to expand our fan base, deliver across the Brand Blueprint and activate our significant investments in the business to become the world’s leading fantasy-inspired gaming publisher on all platforms.”

Ms. Williams said: “Joining the team whose passion and imagination created such iconic games as MAGIC: THE GATHERING and DUNGEONS & DRAGONS is a dream come true. With best-in-class developers, designers and producers, the opportunities at Wizards of the Coast for creative storytelling and innovative game play are limitless. I look forward to working with Chris, Tim, Hasbro and the entire Wizards of the Coast team to build on their incredible momentum and deliver exciting new experiences for our fans globally."

Ms. Williams will succeed Mr. Cocks, who will assume the role of CEO of Hasbro on February 25, 2022. As the head of Wizards of the Coast and Digital Gaming, Ms. Williams will lead the strategy for two of the biggest names in gaming, MAGIC: THE GATHERING and DUNGEONS & DRAGONS, while driving continued global growth for the division and leading new fan and story-led tabletop and digital experiences. She will build and expand on the outstanding foundation laid by Mr. Cocks, under whose leadership Wizards of the Coast doubled its revenue from 2018 to 2021.

Mr. Fields said: “As a lifelong gamer who has been playing DUNGEONS & DRAGONS and MAGIC: THE GATHERING since I was a child, I am thrilled to be joining the Wizards and Hasbro family to develop the next generation of AAA digital games. Working alongside such a talented team and under Cynthia’s leadership, I look forward to bringing the love of these brands to millions more players around the world.”

Mr. Fields will report to Ms. Williams. As Senior Vice President and General Manager of Digital Gaming, he will be responsible for all digital gaming, including internal and external development of Wizards’ growing portfolio of story-led projects.
 

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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey

Jaeger

That someone better
From Tim Fields

Mr. Fields said: “As a lifelong gamer who has been playing DUNGEONS & DRAGONS and MAGIC: THE GATHERING since I was a child, Not the same, sure.

We're definitely talking past each other a bit here...

My view: I dismiss Mr. Fields gaming experience out of hand because he will be doing his thing on the Digital Gaming side of things.

I'm not a video gamer - I can care less what WotC does in this regard.

I care about the Table top side of things, for which Mr. Fields will have basically Zero influence over.

Which leaves Ms. Williams with the final say over the pen and paper RPG.

She is not a gamer.

She doesn't care about D&D the game. (which is what most on this forum actually care about)

Her job is to grow the MtG and D&D Brand IP's. Whatever direction that takes...
 

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darjr

I crit!
Digital definitely looks like the big push. But they do know there is a tabletop side. They will have to manage it.

Maybe it’ll be like Marvell but even so it’s good a tabletop gamer is in the leader ship.

Chris Cocks is it at least was too.
 

CleverNickName

Limit Break Dancing
Imagine it this way.

Your company deals exclusively in architecture: you hire architects, and you construct buildings all over the world. To accomplish this, you need an airplane to fly across the Atlantic so that you can attend meetings regularly and supervise your projects. Since you are exclusively an architecture firm, dealing with architects and buildings and construction day-in and day-out...

...do you want an architect flying the plane? or would you rather have a pilot? Would a pilot who is also an architect make much difference, when it comes to flying the plane?

Ms. Williams might not be a gamer, but she's not getting paid to play D&D professionally, or to create content for it, or to write new rules. She's getting paid to direct a company. She's "flying the plane," so to speak.
 




Parmandur

Book-Friend
Unsurprised to see someone like Williams in charge given the $$$ being made from D&D at the moment, and I don't think it's a bad thing. I mean where did Chris Cocks come from? Microsoft. I feel like this "SHE AINT NO GAMER" stuff is a bit ummm, gendered. I doubt Cocks got it.
I mean, he got a little, because he wasn't an active tabletop gamer at the time, and a general "Suits Bad" toxicity is a bit of a thing. But I bet she is getting more.
 
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Parmandur

Book-Friend
Digital definitely looks like the big push. But they do know there is a tabletop side. They will have to manage it.

Maybe it’ll be like Marvell but even so it’s good a tabletop gamer is in the leader ship.

Chris Cocks is it at least was too.
I think the digital focus is good for the tabletop game, frankly: keep the tabletop game stable as a baseline, and don't reinvent it every few years.
 




CleverNickName

Limit Break Dancing
Oh great...she's from the Microsoft culture...as if D&D couldn't spiral any further...
Oh yes, "spiraling." Being the #1 RPG, with multiple titles on numerous best-seller lists, and having those ten-figure earnings reports...it must be horrible. :rolleyes:

All of their graphs are climbing up and to the right, and have been for years.
 
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beancounter

(I/Me/Mine)
Corporations exist to maximize shareholder value, and they believe that these two will do just that.
Whether they are gamers or not, really doesn't matter to the bottom line.
 

Jaeger

That someone better
Unsurprised to see someone like Williams in charge given the $$$ being made from D&D at the moment, and I don't think it's a bad thing. I mean where did Chris Cocks come from? Microsoft. I feel like this "SHE AINT NO GAMER" stuff is a bit ummm, gendered. I doubt Cocks got it.

You should try to not project your personal hang-ups on to other people.

Ms. Williams sex is completely irrelevant to my point.

If you want to scold people who continually think in terms of "gender"; I recommend the nearest mirror.

'Cause I gave it to Chris Cocks pretty good too:


Corporations exist to maximize shareholder value, and they believe that these two will do just that.

Exactly.

My point being that they could care less what happens to the game once "D&D" is making more money as an established Brand in digital and video media...
 


Scribe

Hero
Unsurprised to see someone like Williams in charge given the $$$ being made from D&D at the moment, and I don't think it's a bad thing. I mean where did Chris Cocks come from? Microsoft. I feel like this "SHE AINT NO GAMER" stuff is a bit ummm, gendered. I doubt Cocks got it.
Misogyny is alive and well, in fact its probably worse now than I've seen online in the last 20 years.

No kidding. Next thing you know, they'll be allowing PC wizards to learn "Blue Screen of Death". Then no campaign will be safe!
Actually my laptop just the other week had its BSOD moment after one of the recent Windows updates. Remember rebuilding our computers all the time back in the Windows 98/XP days?

Good times...good times....
 

Imagine it this way.

Your company deals exclusively in architecture: you hire architects, and you construct buildings all over the world. To accomplish this, you need an airplane to fly across the Atlantic so that you can attend meetings regularly and supervise your projects. Since you are exclusively an architecture firm, dealing with architects and buildings and construction day-in and day-out...

...do you want an architect flying the plane? or would you rather have a pilot? Would a pilot who is also an architect make much difference, when it comes to flying the plane?

Ms. Williams might not be a gamer, but she's not getting paid to play D&D professionally, or to create content for it, or to write new rules. She's getting paid to direct a company. She's "flying the plane," so to speak.

I would hope the new Pres could find a few hours to learn and play D&D the product he/she represents.

Funny how far the product has come. From a guy who loved games and wanted to make games to what it is today.
 


Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
Mod Note:

Folks, I’m seeing a bit of attempted mind-reading going on, exacerbated by some…ill-chosen rhetoric in some posts with unclear meanings. And that’s led to some prickly retorts.

Let’s all take a step back, take a breather, and de-escalate.
 

You should try to not project your personal hang-ups on to other people.
Congratulations! You have escaped the curse!

But you're not the only one saying that.

Either way, it's a silly objection. Whether Williams or Cocks, they're head of WotC, not head of D&D. So long as they understand the market and can work well with people who have more detailed understandings of the actual games, they're fine.
 

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