The Red Shirt Guy’s BlizzCon 2014 Predictions

BlizzCon 2014 is nearly upon us and, as with every year, speculation about the convention’s announcements have run wild. Here are my predictions for what we shall see announced this year.

Things I’m Very Sure Of:

Hearthstone expansion, it’s been teased to fan sites over the past weeks and the Hearthstone website posted a strange article hinting at new features. From these various teasers, I’m fairly certain the Hearthstone expansion will be mechanical themed in terms of the new cards added, and will have a spectator mode and a new gameplay mode, “speed rounds,” in which each player is given only fifteen seconds for their turns.

StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void reveal. Blizzard released several StarCraft II sound files over the past few days which are titled respectively “See” “…you…” “…at…” with the last one uploaded only 11 hours ago as of this writing. Yes, technically LoV can’t be “revealed” as we’ve known about it since before StarCraft II even launched, but this would be the first public look at the expansion, similar to Heart of the Swarm‘s reveal trailer several BlizzCons ago.

Warlords of Draenor patch content. Jeremy Feasel mentioned on Twitter that they will be showcasing some new pet battle information, which means, even if it’s just pet content, there will be information about 6.1 and beyond. My personal guess would be a showcase of Tanaan Jungle, perhaps discussion on how the patch cycle will work as they have been rather vague in past interviews, and if they’re ready, a preview of the updated blood elf models.

Things I’m Not as Sure Of:

Overwatch. Blizzard has filed 7 trademarks for this recently, one months ago and the others over these last two weeks. Considering all the different trademarks I’d hazard to say Overwatch is a new IP, and possibly the “big announcement” that Blizzard employees have been alluding to on Twitter. As for what it is, I’d theorize it’s the setting and lore made for the canceled Titan project put into a non-MMO game of some type, but it’s just a guess with no real evidence backing it up.

Heroes of the Storm beta announcement. Nothing for HOTS has been teased the way Hearthstone has, but with the “final phase of the technical alpha” having started a little while ago, now would be the perfect time to announce when HOTS will enter its beta test. I’d also expect some new heroes and possibly new maps to be shown off as well.

Eye of Azshara is fake. Yes, someone would have had to spend $299 and commit a crime to get that trademark up if it’s not genuine, but at this point things aren’t looking to be in EoA’s favor. It hasn’t been filed in any other country, whereas Warlords of Draenor was quickly trademarked in other regions after its discovery. I would certainly like it to be genuine, I might even make a series of posts about what I would want to see in a hypothetical Azshara expansion, but at this point I doubt it has anything to do with this year’s BlizzCon. Hopefully I’m wrong on this one.

 

Looking for Group – Documentary Premiere at BlizzCon

A few months ago, a secret project was being created. Asking the help of the community, Blizzard asked players and fans to share their feelings about a World of Warcraft adventure that we started 10 years ago.
And so, on November 8 at 5 p.m there will be the premiere of World of Warcraft : Looking for Group, a documentary made for that special moment!
World of Warcraft®: Looking for Group – Documentary Premiere at BlizzCon

Join us Saturday, November 8 at 5 p.m. PST for the premiere of World of Warcraft: Looking for Group, an all-new documentary celebrating 10 years of adventure, camaraderie, and /dancing on mailboxes all around Azeroth. This decade-spanning archive explores the history of WoW with the people who create it, collects stories from players around the world, and takes you into corners of Blizzard and the WoW community you’ve never seen before.

Join us either in person at BlizzCon at the Main Stage in Hall D at 5 p.m. PST, or watch it free on the World of Warcraft Tournament Live Stream. You’ll also be able to find it on the official World of Warcraft YouTube page and official World of Warcraft site.

 

 

Activision Blizzard Q3 2014 Conference Call – Transcript

The Activision Blizzard Q3 2014 financial report conference call revealed a few details of importance surrounding Blizzard Entertainment games.

  • Hearthstone coming to Android Tablets in December 2014.

  • Hearthstone coming to iPhones some time afterwards. No ETA.

  • Heroes of the Storm Technical Alpha is shifting to Closed Beta soon.

  • Blizzard Entertainment’s World of Warcraft remains the #1 subscription-based MMORPG, with more than 7.4 million subscribers as of September 30, 2014, ahead of the upcoming World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor release.

  • During the quarter, Blizzard Entertainment’s newest franchise, Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft, exceeded 20 million registered users life to date.

  • In North America and Europe combined, for the third quarter, Blizzard Entertainment’s Diablo III: Reaper of Souls-Ultimate Evil Edition was the #4 best-selling console title, and year to date, Diablo III: Reaper of Souls remained the #2 PC game in dollars.

 

Transcript

This is a partial transcript of the conference call, gathering the comments from Robert A. Kotick (Activision Blizzard CEO, President and Director) and Mike Morhaime (Blizzard Entertainment CEO).

Blizzard’s new-found focus on storytelling is a step in the right direction for World of Warcraft

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“Gameplay first.”

The first thing you see upon Blizzard Entertainment’s mission statement webpage is this statement, standing firmly as the first of “eight core values” that serves as the code for game development within this massive company.

It’s no secret that Blizzard has always prioritized gameplay over other elements in their video games. This core value of “gameplay first” is what’s lead the studio to being seen as a titan within the video game industry. The immersive world and fluid combat of World of Warcraft; the gameplay improvements and tweaks brought upon Diablo 3 with Reaper of Souls; the near perfect RTS elements of Starcraft; all of these worlds that have been crafted by Blizzard offer fantastic experiences in gameplay as a whole.

Despite all these obvious positives in Blizzard’s video games, what elements have they overlooked? In this case, and for this piece, there’s one element that to the opinion of several fans have always been lacking severely: Storytelling.

Activision Blizzard Q3 2014 Financial Results Conference on Nov 4

Activision Blizzard plans to release the Third Quarter 2014 Financial Results on November 4, 2014. Check out Blizzplanet after the conference call to learn any new updates concerning the various Blizzard franchises. This conference call will take place a week before BlizzCon 2014.

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SANTA MONICA, Calif. –(BUSINESS WIRE)— Activision Blizzard, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATVI) intends to release its third quarter 2014 results after the close of the market on Tuesday, November 4, 2014 . In conjunction with this release, Activision Blizzard will host a conference call that will be broadcast over the Internet.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

1:30 p.m. Pacific Time ( 4:30 p.m. Eastern Time )

To listen to the call, please log onto:

http://investor.activision.com/events.cfm

Or dial:

U.S. and Canada : 877-681-3367
International: 719-325-4770
Passcode: 5237379

Anyone planning to dial in to the call should RSVP to Pam Beaver at:

E-mail: [email protected]

A presentation corresponding with the conference call will be available in Adobe Acrobat format at http://investor.activision.com/events.cfm

A replay of the call will also be available approximately three hours after the call’s conclusion and archived for one year in the Investor Relations section at www.activisionblizzard.com

 

Blizzard cancels TITAN the next-gen MMO

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This is probably one of the biggest news from Blizzard since the announcement of Walords of Draenor last year. In an interview with Polygon, Christ Metzen and Mike Morhaime announced that after 7 years of development the unannounced project called TITAN, was simply cancelled due to the loss of fun during the development.

During that time, there was revamp of the project multiple time, this is maybe where Blizzard team lost the passion making what could have been an ambitious MMO using next-gen technology.

Blizzard has officially canceled development on its mysterious next-generation massively multiplayer game Titan. The company confirmed the news to Polygon in a recent interview.

This revelation comes after at least seven years in development and word last year that the developer was going back to the drawing board to reevaluate the project.

Speaking to Polygon, Blizzard co-founder and CEO Mike Morhaime reiterated that the company has technically never officially announced Titan, though it hasn’t been shy to talk about the game over the past seven years. “We had created World of Warcraft, and we felt really confident that we knew how to make MMOs,” Morhaime said. “So we set out to make the most ambitious thing that you could possibly imagine. And it didn’t come together.

Read the all article from Polygon, right here.

 

“We didn’t find the fun,” Morhaime continued. “We didn’t find the passion. We talked about how we put it through a reevaluation period, and actually, what we reevaluated is whether that’s the game we really wanted to be making. The answer is no.”

Medivh (Possibly) Sighted in the Warlords of Draenor Alpha

A big surprise has been unearthed in the Warlords of Draenor alpha. A youtube poster known only as “WoDBeta” has uploaded a video of the quest “All is Revealed” in Frostfire Ridge. The quest has players use an “all-seeing eye” created by Khadgar to spy on Gul’dan and the Shadow Council. Gul’dan is seen accompanied by his usual accomplices Cho’Gall, Teron’gor and Giselda the Crone. However a fourth ally can be seen standing next to Gul’dan, his appearance obscured by shadows.

Once Gul’dan notices the presence of the all-seeing eye, the shadowy being vanishes while the other four remain. Who is this Mysterious Figure? There is one individual who immediately comes to mind. Someone who both greatly resembles the figure’s silhouette, and has a very strong connection to Gul’dan at this point in time. The Last Guardian, Medivh… (Though he’s technically not the Last Guardian anymore due to Med’an, but that’s still kind of Medivh’s title)

Azeroth Choppers: Winner unveil tomorrow + Episode 8 this week!

Hello. Paul Jr recently wrote on his twitter account/facebook that unveiling of the winning choppers of warcraft, will be unveiled tomorrow. The Vote-polls closed yesterday, and it´s now up to Blizzard to count all votes, and announce the winner of the Azeroth Choppers. Who will win? Horde or Alliance? It have been a close lead between both choppers, and it was up to the fans to vote their favorite, and the one that will get an FREE-ingame input to the game. Rumors has it that both choppers will get put into the game, although the losing chopper will have a price or discount in Blizz Store. SO far we don´t know yet, but if they made two choppers, why don´t put both in-game? At least, Paul Jr is ready and pumped up by the response and the journey, and is excited to unveil the winner! Also, Episode 8 of Azeroth Choppers go live on thursday June 5th.

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We will have more information about the event once Blizzard gives official news, Stay Tuned!

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Are you excited for Warlords of Draenor? Fear not, Blizzard will announce news very soon!

Azeroth Choppers — Episode 5

On this episode of Azeroth Choppers, both of Blizzard’s Alliance and Horde team are heading toward Paul’s JR Designs to have a look on the choppers !

Azeroth Choppers Episode 5 – Watch Now!

The time has come! This week on Azeroth Choppers, the Blizzard teams brave the cold and journey out to New York for a first look at the Horde and Alliance bikes.

Keep up to date on all of the latest episodes at www.AzerothChoppers.com, and let your faction’s war cry be heard with #AzerothChoppers.

 

Activision Blizzard Q1 2014 Finacial Results Conference Call – Mike Morhaime Transcript

activision-blizzard-logoThe first quarter of 2014 ended with 7.6 million World of Warcraft subscribers (200 thousand below the previous quarter). However, Warlords of Draenor pre-orders have surpassed 1 million sales even without an official release date. The number will continue to increase. The Warlords of Draenor Collector’s Edition isn’t yet on sale at retailers, which means pre-order sales will continue to increase.

The conference call still didn’t provide an official release date simply generalizing that Warlords of Draenor is slated for the second half of 2014. However, mentions Alpha testing will begin soon. It is a trend now with Heroes of the Storm, and now with Warlords of Draenor that opt-in players will get invited in waves into the Warlords of Draenor Alpha testing.

Hearthstone is now played by 10 million players worldwide, more content in development and new platforms coming in 2014. This in reference to Hearthstone on Android devices, announced at PAX East 2014.

Diablo III will see content updates and new console versions. Check out below the audio and transcript.