Phil "The Thrill" Haller released by S2Games

Posted by Kyle "swindlemelonzz" Freedman at 06 September 2012 03:46

In a shocking move earlier today, S2 games has chosen to fire one of their most well-known employees Phil Haller. Phil was in charge of the recent DreamHoN tournament at Dreamhack Summer, as well as the past DreamHoN Online Summer Championship and the upcoming DreamHoN: Redemption tournament.

Thus far the reasons for his release are purely speculative, although this statement was made by Pu "Diva" Liu shortly after the news broke:

Phil was let go for reasons similar to why a lot of people are let go - we didn't feel like it was a great fit moving forward.

Phil's personal statement is as follows:
I appreciated my time at S2 Games and look forward to seeing them grow as a Company. The experience I was able to obtain during my tenure there will be applicable to every day of the rest of my life, and for that opportunity I will be always grateful.

Many competitors do not know what to make of this development, especially since it occurred not only on a Wednesday, but also in the middle of one of the crucial dreamhack qualifier tournaments that Phil himself announced and administrated.

Some, such as Jascha "Nova" Markuse and Alex "Sender" Wieker had their own opinions to offer -

I have no idea about the circumstances of Phil's departure but it doesn't really matter. As far as a competitor could judge Phil did an amazing job the past half year or so - the DreamHoN Summer Championship was one hell of a tournament with close to no flaws and although Phil didn't organize it all by himself he played a vital role in this and other eSports related actions from S2.

Thank you, Phil.

Good luck, Sam.
- Nova

I don't understand what S2 is thinking with this move. Phil was one of the few employees most competitors felt they could trust, and the main reason I chose to stay with HoN four months ago instead of moving to Dota2.
- Sender

Many competitors are fearful of what this could mean for the rumored and long-awaited HoNTour - S2's fabled tournament that would put the game on the same level as the other more-popular MOBAs League of Legends and Dota 2. When questioned further about the reasoning behind Phil's release and what this development could mean for the future of HoNTour, Diva again was able to provide comment -

Hon tour will continue as planned. We have apologized on multiple counts, and I will again apologize that HoN Tour has been a debacle of a wait. However, the ball has been dropped on multiple fronts by multiple people. Do not think us letting Phil go was easy or a knee-jerk move.

We hope to have something very, very concrete to show you shortly

Phil's replacement, Sam "Milkfat" Braithwaite had this to say on his new position -

I got hired by S2 for a different position as you know and had no idea about Phil being let go. It was a shock to me as it was to anyone else. I literally came into work today and was told. I had absolutely nothing to do with it and I accepted the position when offered to me and I am going to do the best I can to fill his shoes. I loved the guy.

Phil was a personal friend to many competitors, including myself, and we wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors. Many consider him to have a large role in the growth of Heroes of Newerth's visibility in the e-sports world and with his removal the future of HoN's competitive circuit fades back into uncertainty. I speak for the community when I say we extremely appreciate not only the large amount of work and dedication he has put in to help put HoN back on the map, but also his extensive efforts to always remain accessible to the community, even when he was off the clock.

Thanks again Phil. We'll miss you.

HoN Forums - Diva's Announcement