Fantasy Flight Games founder and Twilight Imperium creator steps down from Asmodee


Christian T. Petersen established X-Wing and Arkham Horror publisher in 1995

The founder of Fantasy Flight Games is leaving Asmodee, decades after he established the mega-publisher behind X-Wing, Arkham Horror and more.

Christian T. Petersen created Fantasy Flight Games more than 20 years ago in 1995, turning the former comic-book importer into a leading presence in the gaming world.

The publisher first made its name in 1997 with Petersen’s own magnum opus, hugely ambitious space strategy game Twilight Imperium, which last year saw the release of a fourth edition.

Petersen also served as the designer and co-designer on a number of other big games, including the Game of Thrones board game and X-Wing miniatures sibling Star Wars: Armada, as well as having a hand in hundreds of games released by Fantasy Flight over the years.

In 2014, following a merger with French publishing giant Asmodee, Petersen became CEO for Asmodee North America – a position he will leave at the end of 2018 in order to “focus on family, health, and the pursuit of other interests”.

The last games Petersen worked on at Fantasy Flight will be released over the next six months to a year, he confirmed.

“After nearly 20 years with FFG and four years with Asmodee, I've seen our market go through tremendous change and amazing growth,” Petersen added in a statement. “Tabletop games have been accepted into the fabric of society and represented in pop culture more positively than anyone could have hoped for when I joined the industry. I feel fortunate to have experienced this phenomenon firsthand, and to have been part of such an incredible journey.

“Now it's time to hand the reins to a new generation of leaders who along with the amazing staff at Asmodee North America and its studios will move forward with their own unique energy and vision. I have no doubt that they'll be better, burn brighter, and achieve ever more fantastic things. I can't wait to see what they'll do, and to play what they'll make.”

Petersen’s departure comes as the Asmodee group prepares to be bought by new owner PAI Partners for a staggering €1.2 billion, following multiple years of major studio acquisitions in the gaming industry by the publisher, bringing Catan Studio, Days of Wonder, Plaid Hat, Z-Man and more under the Asmodee banner.

He is also the latest high-profile creative presence to leave the publisher following the departure of Eldritch Horror, Mansions of Madness and Legacy of Dragonholt co-designer Nikki Valens earlier this year.