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Brian Holinka

Brian Holinka

“Holinka would build his garrison in Ashran if he could. It would be perpetually on fire.”

Jeremy Feasel[1]

Brian Holinka was Lead Combat Designer on World of Warcraft at Blizzard Entertainment. He was involved in all combat related systems including class design and PvP content. He left the company in May 2023 to join Greg Street's own.[2]


Desvin's avatar
Role Game Designer

Holinka joined Blizzard and the WoW team in August 2012.[3] His background before this was as a first-person shooter (FPS) designer,[3] including working on the multiplayer components of Transformers: Fall of Cybertron, Homefront, and Frontlines: Fuel of War.[4] He was previously a member of High Moon Studios[5] and Trauma Studios,[6] and was brought into Kaos Studios when it was formed from the latter group's core members.[7] Holinka got his start in the game industry moonlighting on the “Desert Combat” mod for Battlefield 1942 while serving as a Captain in the United States Air Force.[4]

On June 15th, 2017, he announced that he was moving to another project at Blizzard.[8] In October 2018, he returned to World of Warcraft as Lead Combat Designer, heading up the team responsible for all combat related systems including class design and player versus player content.[9][10]


Holinka - Afro

Sadly, not his real hair

  • "We've tried very hard to make PvP a bigger part of the game, and more accessible to more people, because in the end, we all want more people to kill."[3]
  • "One of the main reasons I became more active on things like Twitter was I really wanted PvP players to know that there was someone at Blizzard focused on PvP"[3]
  • "I think one of the misconceptions though is that I'm like the only one who cares about this stuff … the whole team cares about PvP."[11]

About Brian:

  • "We're always consulting closely with Brian, like "If we make this change is it going to make them overpowered there?" - "No, it'll be fine, you can do it" or "Oh my god, don't do that!" We scare him a lot - "Oh no, no, don't do that!" is frequently the response we get from Brian." - Kris Zierhut, Lead Class Designer[11]

Notes and trivia[]


  1. ^ Jeremy Feasel 2014-04-23. Twitter / Muffinus.​ “Holinka would build his garrison in Ashran if he could. It would be perpetually on fire.
  2. ^ Brian Holinka on Twitter: "After nearly 11 years, Friday will be my last day on World of Warcraft and at Blizzard. I'm excited to spend time off with my family this summer, after which, I'll begin a new adventure with my old friend and mentor, Greg Street."
  3. ^ a b c d - Senior PvP Designer Brian Holinka interviewed in Korea (2014-02-21)
  4. ^ a b Arena Junkies - PvP Interview with Greg Street & New PvP Game Designer Brian Holinka (2013-03-06)
  5. ^ Brian Holinka on Twitter (2015-01-15).
  6. ^ Brian Holinka on Twitter (2014-10-04).
  7. ^ Brian Holinka on Twitter (2014-10-04).
  8. ^ On to my Next Adventure at Blizzard
  9. ^ Brian Holinka on Twitter - "Is this true? Have you returned to bring balance to WoW PvP?"
    "Yes, I am once again a part of the WoW team. The team has done tremendous work during the past year and I’m very excited to help them in anyway I can. An amazing team makes World of Warcraft. Proud to work alongside them."
  10. ^ Brian Holinka on LinkedIn
  11. ^ a b WoW Source Episode 3 - Warlords of Draenor PvP and Class Changes. Blizzard Entertainment (2014-04-22).
  12. ^ a b MMO-Champion - WoD Dev Interviews, Blizzard at PAX East, Blue Tweets, War Crimes Preview, DLC #432 (2014-03-18)
  13. ^ Brian Holinka on Twitter (2015-01-15).
  14. ^ Lore on Twitter (2014-04-25).​ “Seriously though, the @holinka meme generator is my new favorite thing:

External links[]