Helldivers 2’s Game Master Is A Guy Named Joel And He’s Secretly Pulling The Strings In Real Time

Dream job, to be honest.

Helldivers 2 continues to be a global phenomenon, and while the actual impact of its novel live “Game Master” concept was uncertain early doors, as the community continues its fight back the Terminid and Automaton armies it’s starting to see those efforts bear fruit. To date, players have seen things like specific stratagems being made free temporarily, surprise Automaton invasions and even entire pilotable mechs that none of us had any idea were in the game, all at the hands of the mysterious Game Master.

Now, the studio has lifted the veil somewhat on this unknown puppeteer pulling the strings behind the scenes, and it turns out it’s just one guy named Joel.

“We have an actual person with the job title of Game Master,” Arrowhead’s CEO Johan Pilestedt told PC Gamer in an interview, letting the outlet know that Joel takes his job very seriously.

“We have a lot of systems built into the game where the Game Master has a lot of control over the play experience. It’s something that we’re continuously evolving based on what’s happening in the game. And as part of the roadmap, there are things that we want to keep secret because we want to surprise and delight.”

“There have been some sudden moments where maybe one planet was too easy or one was too hard and Joel had to get up in the middle of the night to give the Automatons a bit of reinforcements so the players don’t take the planet too quickly,” Pilestedt elaborated.

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Of course, beyond just Joel, the team at Arrowhead is constantly watching how its community plays and reacts to the unfolding conflict, the attachments they form to particular planets or causes and how best to focus its efforts to deliver what players gravitate towards as well as consistently surprise them and provide a compelling, live narrative. You can read the full piece on PC Gamer here.

We gave Helldivers 2 a 9/10 in our review, with Edward saying, “Helldivers 2 is a masterstroke, a sensational sequel to one of my favourite games and an absolute must play for people who enjoy simple, cinematic, and irreverent fun. The shift in perspective, the upgraded graphics and sound design, and the hard lean into satirical humour have launched it easily into one of my favourite games of 2024.”