With Starfield finally out, Pete Hines is leaving Bethesda after 24 years

Pete Hines
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Pete Hines, Bethesda's head of publishing, has announced his intention to retire from the company.

"After 24 years, I have decided my time at Bethesda Softworks has come to an end," Hines wrote in a message on social media. "I am retiring and will begin an exciting new chapter of my life exploring interests and passions, donating my time where I can, and taking more time to enjoy life. This was not a decision I came to easily or quickly, but after an amazing career, culminating in the incredible launch of Starfield, it feels like the time is right."

With a background in communications and marketing, Hines actually got his start in the game industry as a writer and reviewer for a now-defunct gaming site called The Adrenaline Vault. After three years in journalism, he became Bethesda's SVP of global marketing and communications back in 1999, a position he held for 23 years until he became the studio's head of publishing in 2022.

In recent years, Hines had essentially become a public face of Bethesda alongside Todd Howard, appearing regularly in interviews and on press conference stages. In a company statement, the studio says that this public presence "was only a small part of his role at Bethesda," and says that "his contributions have been integral in building Bethesda and its family of studios into the world-class organization that it is today."

There's also that one time Hines was asked about Nazis and said "fuck those guys," so clearly this is an executive with his head on straight. On top of the corporate statement, Bethesda also put out an endearing little goodbye message to Hines.

While the Bethesda name is associated with Bethesda Game Studios titles like Starfield and The Elder Scrolls 6, Hines is associated with Bethesda Softworks. The corporate chain is pretty confusing these days, but Bethesda Softworks is a subsidiary of ZeniMax Media, and usually serves as the publishing label for all that company's other studios, from id Software and MachineGames to Arkane and Tango Gameworks. This, of course, is even more confusing now that ZeniMax and all its subsidiaries - including every Bethesda division - is now a part of Xbox Game Studios. Whether Hines' retirement as head of publishing presages some sort of major restructure at ZeniMax under the Xbox banner remains to be seen.

Here are all the upcoming Bethesda games you need to know about.

Dustin Bailey
Staff Writer

Dustin Bailey joined the GamesRadar team as a Staff Writer in May 2022, and is currently based in Missouri. He's been covering games (with occasional dalliances in the worlds of anime and pro wrestling) since 2015, first as a freelancer, then as a news writer at PCGamesN for nearly five years. His love for games was sparked somewhere between Metal Gear Solid 2 and Knights of the Old Republic, and these days you can usually find him splitting his entertainment time between retro gaming, the latest big action-adventure title, or a long haul in American Truck Simulator.