The SDCC 2018 Blizzard Entertainment panel schedule is available. You can find Blizzard at booth 140. The event will be held at the San Diego Convention Center throughout July 19-22.
There is a Blizzard Publishing panel with potentially two reveals, an Art of Hearthstone panel, a Behind-the-Scenes of the latest Overwatch Hero panel, and a Comic Book Editorial panel (with representatives of 4 comics companies, including Blizzard).
In addition, senior writer Andrew Robinson is among the panelists of the Simulated Worlds: Writing for Virtual Reality and Games panel. Christie Golden will be talking (I assume) about the World of Warcraft: Before the Storm novel at the “What’s New from Del Rey Books?” panel.
Behind the Cards: The Art of Blizzard's Hearthstone
Ben Thompson (art director), Hadidjah Chamberlain (senior FX artist), Jomaro Kindred (senior concept artist), and Matt Dixon (illustrator) offer a deep dive into the world of card creation for Blizzard Entertainment’s hit digital card game Hearthstone. Surprise and delight await as panelists walk attendees through a Boomsday card's development from initial concept sketches to final card art.
Thursday July 19, 2018 12:00pm - 1:00pm Room 5AB
Crafting Story for Video Games
Writers and narrative designers from some of your favorite games and franchises discuss the craft of making successful interactive stories. Panelists Leah Hoyer (Telltale Games), George Krstic (Blizzard), Ryan Verniere (Riot), and Anne Toole (Horizon Zero Dawn) will share tips and behind-the-scenes stories from their careers, as well as offer solid advice to anyone waning to make their own interactive stories or make game writing their career.
Thursday July 19, 2018 4:45pm - 5:45pm Room 6BCF
The Comic Book Editorial Panel 2018
Joe Illidge (Verge Entertainment), Barbara Randall Kesel (CrossGen), Matt Hawkins (Image/Top Cow), Jasmine Amiri (Lion Forge), and Shannon Eric Denton (Blizzard) discuss the ins and outs of submitting and breaking in with a comic book publisher. Moderated by Vince Hernandez (Aspen Comics).
Friday July 20, 2018 11:00am - 12:00pm Room 9
Behind the Scenes of Overwatch's Newest Hero
Overwatch developers Michael Chu (lead writer), Arnold Tsang (assistant art director), Geoff Goodman (lead hero designer), and Geoffrey Garnett (senior sound designer) present a behind-the-scenes look into the creative process of developing the story, art, and gameplay kit for Overwatch's newest hero. Learn more about Overwatch hero design and participate in Q&A with the developers after the panel.
Friday July 20, 2018 3:15pm - 4:15pm Room 6BCF
Chapters and Panels: Blizzard Publishing
See how Blizzard's many worlds are crafted into compelling art and narrative through an array of books and comics. Some of the industry's best authors discuss how they bring to life compelling stories that expand and widen the universe of Blizzard's games, told through the lens of some of gaming's most unique characters. Panelists will highlight recent releases, hint at what may be yet to come, and perhaps unveil a surprise or two. Moderated by Blizzard Publishing senior editor Cate Gary. Panelists include Christie Golden, Jody Houser, Mark Evanier, Steve Danuser, and Marv Wolfman.
Saturday July 21, 2018 3:30pm - 4:30pm Room 5AB
What's New from Del Rey Books?
Adventure, science fiction, fantasy, and fairy tales-the publisher of some of these genres' best and brightest stars is here to talk about what's next on the horizon from DelRey Books. Authors Katherine Arden (The Winternight trilogy), Pierce Brown (Red Rising series), Delilah S. Dawson (Kill the Farm Boy), Christie Golden (World of Warcraft: Before the Storm), Kevin Hearne (Kill the Farm Boy), Sylvain Neuvel (The Themis Files), and Naomi Novik (Spinning Silver) discuss their new and upcoming books with moderator Tricia Narwani (Del Rey editorial director).
Saturday July 21, 2018 7:00pm - 8:00pm Room 9
Simulated Worlds: Writing for Virtual Reality and Games
Writers for games and virtual reality talk about the industry's next big paradigm shift. What's different about writing for virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR)? How does new technology shape more traditional games, and how does it impact the way players interact with story? Game writers and industry professionals discuss the potential pitfalls and challenges of new leaps in technology, as well as the potential for new narratives moving forward. Discussion will be moderated by Jonathan Callan (senior writer, Survios), with panelists James Iliff (chief creative officer, Survios), Andrew Robinson (senior writer, Blizzard), and Shawn Kittelsen (writer/head of narrative, Injustice 2).
Today is the 15th Anniversary of the launch of the Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne expansion. The expansion introduced the ascension of Arthas the Death Knight into the Frozen Throne to claim the helm of the Lich King, as well as the Foundation of Orgrimmar.
With the 15th Anniversary finally here, if Blizzard Entertainment is developing the Warcraft III Remastered, we might be hearing about it very soon. If not today, there are four potential events where we might hear about plans. Nothing official at the moment, but we asked Brian Sousa at BlizzCon 2017. Watch what he said about Warcraft III Remastered.
With the recent Blizzard Dev Watercooler post about bringing back WOW Classic and the 1.12 Drums of War patch, I find myself wanting to jump back into WOW. Considering that I hadn’t played the game since Burning Crusade, it’s been a while. My life at that time had little room for gaming in general, and I couldn’t keep raiding with my friends.
I remember the early days, leveling up to 60, getting my epic mounts, learning how to play warrior, leveling up alchemy, etc. Despite what most people thought of warriors, we didn’t just hit sunder to tank everything, we hit heroic strike and rend as well. While it was true that during patch 1.4 and 1.5, there was not very much content, compared to other MMOs at the time, it had more than enough. What quests there were, had town hubs and the infamous exclamation points and question marks easily marked out who had an quest to do. Most infamous was leveling up in the Barrens. Horde players spent an enormous amount of time in the Barrens, it was nearly twice the size of most other zones. Leveling in other zones was interesting and fun, but the Barrens nearly always brought you back, whether it was Booty Bay, or yet another Alliance PVP skirmish at the Crossroads.
Danny Perschonok attended the E3 2018 World of Warcraft Storytelling panel by Christie Golden, Terran Gregory, and Steve Danuser. The panel didn’t go deep into what we should expect post-launch, but it let us glimpse a bit into the process of storytelling, which is not simply done by Christie or Terran as an individual. There is a whole team of over twenty quest design developers and about 15 story development writers who chime in, share ideas, and the combination of those ideas and group decisions shapes the story.
There are two nuggets of info that came out of the panel. Someone (or plural) is going to die in this expansion, and as mentioned by Daniel Stahl at PAX East 2018, something our way is coming soon before launch. According to Terran Gregory, there is some stuff coming soon that Blizzard hasn’t done before.
That’s very intriguing on itself because we have seen that kind of stuff Blizzard has never done before:
So, really, to hear that something is coming that Blizzard hasn’t done before is exciting, and enigmatic. Could you even make a decent guess? There is actually something Blizzard did recently in Heroes of the Storm that might qualify as something never done in World of Warcraft. If you watch the Heroes of the Storm Mecha Storm Trailer, you will quickly notice that it looks like a Robotech TV Cartoon.
Imagine close up one-on-one combat, and full army combat scenes in the same vibe as Mecha Storm, and that would be awesome. Other than that, I can’t even fathom what could qualify as something Blizzard hasn’t done before for a World of Warcraft pre-launch crossmedia.
The Warfront: Stromgarde’s Wartime Donations daily quests have been added to Battle for Azeroth Beta. The idea is that in order to open the Warfront, players have to unite to provide resources for the war effort. Works similar to how players gather resources for the Broken Shore buildings, but instead of a table each player donates profession materials to their respective trainer at Port of Zandalar or Boralus Harbor.
The World of Warcraft: Before the Storm novel by New York Times Bestselling Author Christie Golden is now shipping to homes, and if you order it as a digital download for PC, Kindle, or any mobile device (with internet access, Firefox, or Chrome) you can read it there too.
Below you can see I got my digital download of Before the Storm automatically delivered to my Kindle for PC app.