Chris Kaleiki, former systems and class designer for World of Warcraft, and Doug Frazer, senior gameplay engineer of World of Warcraft, have announced the formation of their independent studio, Notorious Studios. The studio consists of 8 employees, all of whom have worked on World of Warcraft, with plans to increase the team size to 12 by early 2022. The Notorious Studios team is made up of ground-level employees that worked on art, story and coding instead of directors and producers. The studio is currently working on an online RPG and has received a $5 million investment from Galaxy Interactive and Riot Games. Kotaku and other media personalities have criticised the studio, which isn’t even made up of 10 people yet, for not having any female employees.

Here’s what Kaleiki had to say about how Notorious Studios will operate:

The challenges that Blizzard’s had that have been unearthed in the last several months or so have been really troubling, hard to hear about. It affects us as well, even though we’ve been out of Blizzard for a while. What’s important is starting a culture and having no tolerance for harassment and things like that, and also being transparent and open. We’re aspiring to do a flatter structure. None of us are leads or directors.

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