Tomas Hernandez is owner of Blizzplanet.com since 2003. I post news about World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, Diablo III, Hearthstone, Overwatch, Heroes of the Storm, Blizzard Careers, and the Warcraft film.
Blizzplanet is a leading fansite covering news about upcoming Blizzard Entertainment licensed products. I also post previews and reviews. I have interviewed book writers and Blizzard game developers.
I was previously an employee of the OGaming Network (2003), and IncGamers (2008-2010). I was a guest newsposter for GosuGamers (World of Warcraft) a few years ago and for Diablofans.com (formerly Diablo3.com)
***Fans who would love to watch Blizzard-related panels and appreciate our efforts can support Blizzplanet's patreon in a monthly-basis, or a one-time basis. Our staff are volunteer fans like you. Your donations will help us travel to all the Blizzard events we attend year-round to bring you the latest interview with the developers, photos, and panel videos (where allowed).
After 4 days playing the Destiny 2 (PC) Beta, I feel moderately interested in playing the full game when Bungie and Blizzard Entertainment launch it on the PC on October 24.
I say moderately, because I am used to play Blizzard games thoroughly before buying their games. When you play a Blizzard game’s Beta you usually get access to most of the content that ships. In the case of Destiny 2, the Beta is limited to the initial encounter after the cinematic, a Strike encounter (what we call a dungeon), and two PvP modes. That’s it.
I am very picky with shooter games. Over 5000 hours played in Half-Life 2: Deathmatch multiplayer, and solo I have played some FarCry, Crysis, Crysis 2. Plus, Overwatch since Technical Alpha. Currently, I have 4 golden weapons which amounts to 12,000 Competitive Points. Almost half way to get my 5th.
So opening up my heart and time to a unknown shooter, it’s tough.
The first thing that impacted me of Destiny 2 was the cinematic: near-real life quality, and motion-capture facial expresions.
The graphic quality of the interior and outdoor scenes is impressive. The special effects such as explosions look awesome. There is motion blur (with an option to disable it), and when moving from a dark area into a colorful outdoor, there is color aberration.
Blizzard Entertainment and Bungie are preparing to start the Destiny 2 (PC) Beta testing on August 28 — for those who pre-ordered the game. Starting today, the Destiny 2 (PC) installer became enabled in the Blizzard Battle.net Launcher. The game takes 16GB of hard disk space.
I will livestream my Destiny 2 gameplay when the beta goes live. Make sure to follow us on Twitter and YouTube for updates.
The latest installer is currently Destiny 2 (PC) Version 3811885a-Beta.
During the GamesCom 2017 press day (Tue, Aug 22), Blizzplanet members Danny Perschonok (Naka) and Arthur Lorenz (Handclaw) had the opportunity to interview game director Ion Hazzikostas about some of the features in Patch 7.3.
NOTE: The video now has English Subtitles (CC). Lower the volume to 25% to avoid the loud background noise and music. The video was edited to boost the three voices nearest to the microphone so they can be heard at 25% volume. GamesCom is the noisiest convention in the world.
I am Danny with Blizzplanet. We also have Arthur here, and Ion Hazzikostas, and we are going to talk about Patch 7.3.
Blizzplanet members Naka and Handclaw share photos of the GamesCom 2017 Blizzard Booth during the Press Day (Tuesday). As usual, Blizzard Entertainment brought amazing banners, displays, statues, and props for all their video games.
The Blizzard Shop is stock with all kinds of goodies including plush toys, Cute But Deadly figures, Funko POP figures, statues, and more.
Update: After you check out all the photos, visit these links to the maker of the Overwatch statues: FXDeco, who show a closer look at different angles and features of these statues. Junkrat; Widowmaker; Tracer and Winston.
In this GamesCom 2017 Blizzard coverage page, you can browse through everything Blizzard Entertainment revealed at the convention including new content across some of their video games: World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, Heroes of the Storm, Overwatch, and Hearthstone.
**The original Article speculation has been debunked and corrected.
Blizzard Entertainment released the GamesCom 2017 schedule which features a World of Warcraft cinematic reveal on Wed Aug 23 at 6pm.
At this point, we are not too optimistic on a new expansion announcement at GamesCom. Maybe at BlizzCon. What I personally think will happen at GamesCom after seeing the schedule is the 7.3 Cinematic reveal. If you start a level 110 character copy in the PTR 7.3, you will notice that after you start the quest to travel from Azeroth to Argus in the Vindicaar, the Legion Cinematic Intro starts to play (as a placeholder). That cinematic has not been unveiled yet in the PTR. So it makes sense that Blizzard will focus its allocated time for World of Warcraft on featuring the 7.3 Cinematic, and some of its core features.
Characters represented in the GamesCom 2017 keyart:
World of Warcraft — Turalyon Heroes of the Storm — Kerrigan Queen of Ghosts skin Diablo III — The Necromancer Overwatch — Pharah StarCraft II — Fenix clone “Talandar” (Co-op Commander) Hearthstone — Girl holding Hearthstone cards. White rat on her shoulder.
New IP Yet to be announced
Not long ago, during the Activision Blizzard Q2 2017 financial conference call’s Q&A, Mike Morhaime mentioned there were multiple IPs in incubation at the studios (read the transcript). Morhaime specifically highlighted a mobile game.
Could you talk at a high level how Blizzard is allocating its time and resources right now? What percent of man-hours are spent on new IP versus existing IP? And I guess I’d be curious to hear you talk about how you think about Blizzard’s new IP pipeline the next three to five years.
Morhaime: First and foremost, I’d just say that the bulk of our focus continues to be supporting our existing players and releasing high-quality content for our existing games. This quarter is a great example of that approach. We delivered a consistent flow of updates, and new content across all of our games; and that has driven record engagement even without a new game launch. We are also really excited about the future.
In addition to supporting all of our live games, we are committed to incubating new initiatives, and we are also thinking about different platforms, especially mobile.
In terms of new IP, our pipeline is in a better position than ever before in our history. Last year, Allen Adham (who co-founded Blizzard with me and Frank Pearce) returned to the company to take on the task of coordinating our efforts in this regard; and this includes some great ideas that we had already started to explore. So we now have multiple dedicated incubation teams that are being led by some of our most experienced game designers at Blizzard.
I should say that creating new Blizzard-quality games on any platform will take time; and as we have shown in the past, we are not going to release any games that we don’t feel live up to our expectations, or those of our players.
When we do bring new experiences to current or new platforms for new and existing IPs, there are going to be ideas that our teams are passionate about, and that we think there is a large audience for.
The GamesCom 2017 Blizzard Merchandise is also available:
Destiny 2 (PC) Beta starts officially on August 29 for everyone, but those who pre-order Destiny 2 (PC) get 1-day ahead of everyone else with an Early-Access codekey. For those who want a seamless experience at cancelling the pre-order you can get it here.
Within 2-3 days you will get an email from Amazon with the Beta Early-Access code. At that point:
If no code is provided at the Bungie Redeem Code page, then you are set already to download Destiny 2 (PC) on August 28 from your Blizzard Battle.net Launcher.
The second option (if you don’t plan to cancel the pre-order) is to pre-order directly from Blizzard here.
The Destiny 2 (PC) Early-Access Beta starts on August 28 via the Blizzard Battle.net Launcher. Everyone else gets access to beta on August 29. Beta ends on August 31. After that, Destiny 2 goes live for PC on October 24.