BlizzCon 2016 – Songhammer Releases LEGION: EPIC Warcraft Inspired Rock Video

Songhammer announced BlizzCon 2016 exclusive launch of their latest LEGION: Epic Warcraft inspired rock video featuring 15 professional cosplayers, and great special effects. Songhammer will be performing live at BlizzCon, at the main stage on Friday, November 4, 2016 from 8 p.m. – 10 p.m. PDT.

The good news is that you don’t need a BlizzCon ticket to witness their performance. Their play will happen in open space between Marriott and Hilton — outside BlizzCon!

Are you ready to fight the Burning Legion with the mighty Songhammer? Then check out this amazing new video by Blizzard Entertainment’s favorite cosplay rock band! This EPIC adventure features 15 professional cosplayers including BlizzCon Cosplay Competition winners. Indie film award winning director, Randy Van Dyke (Non-Stop To Comic-Con, 31 awards won) both directed and created all the amazing VFX in this Wold of Warcraft inspired song and video. Songhammer will be premiering this song at BlizzCon 2016 for Blizzard’s 25th Anniversary Celebration. You Are NOT Prepared… for this much AWESOMENESS!!!

For a FREE download of Songhammer’s new single, LEGION go to http://www.songhammer.com and click on the FREE MUSIC link.

 

 

Activision Blizzard Announces Better-Than-Expected and Record Third Quarter 2016 Financial Results

Activision Blizzard announced better-than-expected and Record 2016 Q3 financial results with nearly 1 billion in revenue from in-game content.

 

AUDIENCE REACH

Blizzard had the biggest quarterly online player community in its history, with 42 million MAUsA, up 25% quarter-over-quarter and 50% year-over-year. This reflects the continued success of Overwatch® and the launch of World of Warcraft®: Legion™. Blizzard has more than doubled its MAUsA in just two years.

On August 30, 2016 , Blizzard launched World of Warcraft: Legion, which sold-through 3.3 million copies on day one, matching all-time records achieved by previous expansions, and ranking amongst the fastest-selling PC games ever. The new expansion grew franchise MAUsA by nearly 30% quarter-over-quarter.

Overwatch became Blizzard’s fastest game ever to reach over 20 million players globally, with a roughly even player base split between east and west. Overwatch also held the number one position in share of play time in Korean Internet Game Rooms from launch all the way through the third-quarter.

Blizzard’s Hearthstone®: Heroes of Warcraft™ had record quarterly MAUsA, which grew a double-digit percentage year-over-year.

activision-blizzard-2016-q3-p1

 

Illidan Stormrage Polyresin Statue Coming November 3

illidan-stormrage-polyresin-statue-1Blizzard Entertainment announced they will have the Illidan Stormrage Polyresin Statue available for pre-orders on November 3rd at the Gear.Blizzard.com website.

The video below shows the step-by-step history of how the Illidan Stormrage statue was designed, modeled in a computer, then some parts were 3D printed, moving on to hand-crafting with a razor, a welding gadget, and other tools; and then hand-painted until a masterpiece is born.

Get your wallet ready, and your keyboard-thumb ready to press the order button, because this baby is going to get out of stock before you can even finish to say out of stock. Just see how quick BlizzCon tickets get sold out in under 5 minutes as an example of how ruthless some collectible fans are when it comes to snatching home a beauty like this statue.

 

Illidan Stormrage Polyresin Statue

Standing 24 inches tall and made of polyresin, this colorful sculpture of Illidan will make the perfect addition to your collection. The piece is sculpted by Blizzard Senior Sculptor Brian Fay and features original paint by Senior Illustrator Laurel D. Austin.

Supplies of this highly detailed sculpture are limited — so head over to the Blizzard Gear Store beginning November 3 to get yours before it’s too late!

 

Tom Chilton Leaves World of Warcraft Team for Unannounced Game?

Tom ChiltonTom Chilton announced he is no longer game director of the World of Warcraft team. However, he is not leaving Blizzard Entertainment. The fact he didn’t identify to which team he has been moved to direct spells it is a Unannounced Game. Either Tom Chilton is leading the Diablo III Team filling in the position left empty with the departure of Josh Mosqueira, or there is a brand-new game in the works.

At this point, whatever Tom Chilton is working on might be:

  • Diablo III: The New Expansion
  • Warcraft IV
  • New IP

Only time will tell.

Chilton: “My personal journey working on WoW as Game Director is at an end, but my journey with Blizzard isn’t. I’ll still be here, but will be focusing on another project within the company. However, it’s with great pleasure that I announce Ion Hazzikostas will be taking my place as Game Director for World of Warcraft.”

NYCC 2016 – Scholastic Giving Free Excerpt Copies of World of Warcraft: Traveler

The World of Warcraft: Traveler is nigh on our hands. While exploring NYCC 2016, I found the Scholastic room 1E03 at the basement level of the Javits Center (beneath the South Concourse). After going downstairs, turn to your left (behind the stairs) and keep going (in the direction where the 34th street would be if you were outside) until you find ROOM 1E03.

The staff told me you can grab a FREE excerpt copy of WORLD OF WARCRAFT: TRAVELER from the table.

 

NYCC 2016 Book Signing – World of Warcraft: The Official Cookbook

The World of Warcraft: The Official Cookbook has landed at the New York Comic Con (NYCC 2016). Head over to the Insight Editions Booth #1536 this Saturday, Oct 8 from 12:00pm to 1:00pm to buy an early copy of World of Warcraft: The Official Cookbook (Order Online). Author Chelsea Monroe-Cassel will be there to sign your copies. Come to say hi and to ask questions.

Otherwise, you can pre-order a copy online. The book is slated to ship on October 18th, 2016.

During my visit to NYCC (Thurs), I managed to take photos of the List of Contents, and another photo (sampling for you) how each recipe is organized.

NOTE: Full Size photo — Press the Right-Button on the photo. Choose: “Open in New Tab.”

 

world-of-warcraft-the-official-cookbookPrepare a feast fit for a warchief with World of Warcraft: The Official Cookbook, a delicious compendium of recipes inspired by the hit online game from Blizzard Entertainment.

Prepare a feast fit for a warchief with World of Warcraft: The Official Cookbook, a compendium of sweet and savory recipes inspired by the hit game from Blizzard Entertainment. Presenting delicacies favored by the Horde and the Alliance alike, this authorized cookbook teaches apprentice chefs how to conjure up a menu of food and drink from across the realm of Azeroth.

Featuring food pairings for each dish, ideas for creating your own Azerothian feasts, and tips on adapting meals to specific diets, this otherworldly culinary guide offers something for everyone. The aromatic Spiced Blossom Soup is perfect for plant-loving druids, and orcs will go berserk for the fall-off-the-bone Beer-Basted Boar Ribs. With alternatives to the more obscure ingredients—just in case you don’t have Chimaerok Chops lying around—this comprehensive cookbook will ensure that you have no trouble staying Well Fed.

Each chapter features dishes at a variety of skill levels for a total of more than one hundred easy-to-follow recipes for food and brews, including:

• Ancient Pandaren Spices
• Fel Eggs and Ham
• Mulgore Spice Bread
• Dragonbreath Chili
• Graccu’s Homemade Meat Pie
• Bloodberry Tart
• Greatfather’s Winter Ale

Whether you’re cooking for two or revitalizing your raid group for a late-night dungeon run, World of Warcraft: The Official Cookbook brings the flavors of Azeroth to life like never before.

 

 

Our NYCC 2016 Coverage

Glenn Rane
Timothy Zahn (StarCraft: Evolution)
World of Warcraft: The Official Cookbook
World of Warcraft: Traveler (Excerpt)
Christie Golden Signings: Warcraft: The Official Movie Novelization

 

New York Comic Con 2016 – Blizzard Licensed Partners

The NYCC 2016 schedule might help you visit some points of interest. Blizzard Entertainment has no official attendance in terms of the usual Blizzard Publishing Panel. However, you can visit known Blizzard Licensed Product partners. Some of them might have something new to show.

There is at least one Blizzard artist coming to New York Comic Con. Glenn Rane can be found in the Artists Alley at table U9. Bring your stuff for a autograph.

If you are attending the NYCC, I have gotta alert you to rush toward the TITAN BOOKS booth for a NYCC Exclusive item. Titan Books only have 30 copies of the WARCRAFT: THE OFFICIAL MOVIE NOVELIZATION (MAGE EDITION) signed by DUNCAN JONES. First come, first served – while supplies last. CHRISTIE GOLDEN is coming to New York Comic Con to sign copies of it, and the WARCRAFT: DUROTAN (movie prequel) novel. Make sure to come to booth #2142 from 10-11am, on Friday, OCT 7th!

warcraft-the-official-movie-novelization-mage-edition

 

BLIZZARD LICENSED PARTNERS

NECA — Booth 426
Funko — Booth 722
Insight Editions — Booth 1536
Dark Horse Comics — Booth 1636
Sideshow Collectibles — Booth 1946
Penguin Random House — Booth 2106
Titan Books — 2142

 

ROUNDUP

There is no certainty, but I know some of these licensed partners are currently developing products slated for late 2016, and some for Spring-Summer 2017. It might be possible to see some sort of info or product showcase at their booth. Approach a clerk and ask.

NECA is developing the NECA 7″ Heroes of the Storm Series 3 Action Figures which include Jim Raynor and Sylvanas Windrunner. Slated to ship on January 2017.

FUNKO is shipping on October 2016 the new line of OVERWATCH POP! Vinyl Figures: Tracer and Winston.

Insight Editions shipped today (Oct 4) a new reprint of Diablo: Book of Cain and Diablo: Book of Tyrael.

Dark Horse Comics will ship the Overwatch: First Strike graphic novel on April 18, 2017. The Digital version is coming earlier this November 2016. I reached out to Dark Horse two weeks ago, but haven’t gotten a response whether they would showcase it at NYCC. I’ll update on Thursday afternoon after I visit their booth. In addition, Dark Horse will ship the World of Warcraft: Chronicle Vol. 2 on March 14, 2017. I’ll update if they showcase it at NYCC.

Random House recently shipped the World of Warcraft: Illidan; and the StarCraft: Evolution by Timothy Zahn is slated to ship November 8, 2016. It might be possible Random House showcases it. Check us back on Thursday for confirmation.

Blizzard’s Chris Metzen Announced Retirement

406753_10151131823872434_2121458852_nI have been around the Blizzard Entertainment community since 2001 (at age 28) when I played StarCraft, and shortly after in 2003 — Blizzplanet was born. Now at age 43, I am fully immersed in Blizzard’s worlds. I have played all their video games and expansions. I have read all their novels (StarCraft, Warcraft, Diablo). I have grown attached to many of the developers that I have either met and interviewed in person at various events, and others I have only followed online through these years.

One always inpired me, and sated my hunger for more lore: Chris Metzen.

As an anecdote, back in 2008 I was not invited to the StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty press event. I emailed Chris Metzen on a Friday. Less than 24 hours later, Blizzard PR reached out to set my flight and hotel reservations to fly to Irvine. To my surprise, I got to interview Chris and thank him in person.

A few months later, at BlizzCon, I was sitting in the press area (mostly empty) and I hear someone calling me: “Hey, Tom!” I look to my left, and it was Chris Metzen waving at me. That meant the world to me as a fan. Later in 2009, I interviewed Chris at the NY Comic Con about World of Warcraft: Arthas, and in 2012 about Transformers: Autocracy.

I’ll truly miss him. He’s been a heart-close figure. Family.

I have seen many developers come and go, especially these past few years. However, I have to say the ONE I am deeply going to miss is Chris Metzen. He is the soul of Warcraft. Beyond that… the soul of the Blizzard community.

The Star Wars’ “George Lucas.”
The Hobbit’s “J.R.R. Tolkien.”
The Star Trek’s “Gene Roddenberry.”
The Marvel’s “Stan Lee/Jack Kirby.”
The D&D’s “Gary Gygax.”

In short, the one (as fans) we consider the father of the Warcraft lore, one way or another, and other Blizzard franchises. He will be forever present through his works.

Witnessing his retirement hurts my soul deeply — because of what it means for all of us in terms of future stories by him, not seeing him at BlizzCon panels, watching him jam his thoughts in the Collector’s Edition Behind-the-Scenes DVD, or interviews. On the other hand, I’m glad for Chris and Kat. They recently had a baby. Family comes first.

Wish you the best and many blessings, brother!

Note: Very likely you will find words from Chris Metzen in the WARCRAFT BLU-RAY/DVD (Sept 27). Order now.

chris-metzen-allianceI had just turned twenty years old when I started working at Blizzard. Seems like a lifetime ago. Guess it was. Those first few years were the start of a very grand adventure for me, one that would take me around the world, introduce me to thousands of wonderful geeks just like me—and ultimately shape the course of my adult life.

Of course when I started, I had absolutely no idea what I was doing. I had no idea how to make games or build entertainment products.…

But I had an insatiable passion for ideas. For stories. For heroes.

My only real training before joining Blizzard was the long-running D&D campaign I had with my closest friends—Sam, Mike P., Daniel, and Mikey C. (you know who you are, boys…HAMRO!). Building ideas—vast worldscapes, characters, and plotlines with my friends was my first great love. I lived for it. It was a safe space amid the tension and change of some rough teenage years. The grand refuge of D&D was a glorious meeting of minds and imaginations where I felt I truly belonged.

It was a space where friendship and imagination were inextricably linked.

The sharing of ideas on the fly, the crazy, unexpected turns other players would take—it stretched our imaginations in ways we’d never have dreamt of on our own. I loved how roleplaying through adventures taught us so much about each other—and, more often than not, ourselves. Imagining together helped us make sense of the crazy world we were growing up in. It made us stronger together.

I wouldn’t really understand the depth of it for many years, but I had learned an important truth from my friends back then:

Creativity is relational.

Looking back at my years at Blizzard, I see now how profoundly this idea has shaped my career. I see how profoundly my friends and coworkers at Blizzard have shaped me as a person.

For nearly twenty-three years I’ve had the very distinct privilege of shaping worlds and building games with the brightest creative minds in entertainment. I’ve walked with giants (and stood on some giants’ shoulders, too).

In short, I’ve had the time of my life.

I pretty much had the coolest job ever—but the truth is, sometimes it was really hard. Building games with dozens of brilliant, passionate alpha-geeks with their own red-hot instincts and perspectives can be pretty tricky. Coming to consensus about certain design decisions, story motifs, or courses of art direction takes a lot of communication, patience, and “give and take.” It stretches you. Sometimes it wasn’t all that pretty. But engaging with your teammates and collaborating through the potential quagmire of all that creative tension is where the real magic happens.

It’s not just the decisions you come to—or even the final shape of the product you craft.… It’s bigger than that—and infinitely more important. True collaboration builds trust—and trust is the basis of all lasting relationships. With trust you build more than just a great product.

You build a TRIBE…that can build anything.

A family of craftsmen.

That’s what Blizzard has been for me. My second family, through all of life’s ups and downs, it’s always been there. The great, geeky backdrop of my life. I don’t just mean “the job” or even the creative mission—but the people. The people who over and over lifted me up, believed in me—and pushed me to find my potential as both an artist and as a leader all these years.

To my Blizzard brothers and sisters…I wish I had the words.

Everything just sounds…trite.

All I can think of is…

You helped me believe in myself and achieve every one of my wildest dreams.
I am forever grateful to you.

I love you all with everything I’ve got.

Thank you.

And to all of you out there in Blizzard’s vast gaming community—those of you I’ve had the pleasure of meeting in person and all of you around the world I’ve only heard about—thank you.

Thank you all for letting me be a special part of your community. For letting me belong with you. We’ve shared countless adventures together and I’ve always been overwhelmed and humbled by your passion for our games as well your commitment to each other. Thank you for all the BlizzCon hugs, smiles, handshakes, and stories over the years. You will never know how much you’ve all touched my heart and inspired me to give my all into this craft.

With that said, I’ll try to get down to the point, here. I’ve come to a turn in the road. A new, far quieter chapter in my life looms ahead.

I am retiring.

Yup.

Hangin’ up my guns.
Clockin’ out.
Takin’ the last gryphon out of Stormwind.
You get the picture.

Crazy, I know.

It’s a massive change for me, but it’s one I’ve been looking forward to for a while now. It’s ironic given the fact that things have never been better or more energized at Blizzard. Just this year alone has been incredible.

Legion’s arrival.
The launch of Overwatch.
The Warcraft feature film.

I’ve never been more proud of Blizzard and the quality of its products than I am now. It’s remarkable that even after all these years we can still reach new heights and take the world for an amazing ride. I believe Blizzard’s future is brighter than ever.

I won’t lie—it’s going to be really hard stepping away from these worlds that I love. But I’m content that I’m leaving them in the hands of the most passionate, talented, and dedicated craftsmen ever assembled.

I can’t wait to see where Blizzard’s worlds go next—and to experience them first-hand like everyone else does. As a fan. As an adventurer. Right back to the start.

That’s just so cool…

The reason I use the word “retire” is because I’m not going to some other company or starting up new projects or anything remotely like that. It’s been a long, amazing stretch of years. Now it’s time to slow it down. Rest. Lay around on the couch and get fat. Well, fatter.…

Seriously though, I’ll be focusing on the one thing that matters most to me in all the world—my family. They’re the core of my life and the source of my deepest joy and inspiration. In addition to raising our two little ones, we recently welcomed our new baby into the family! Being home with them all, having time and space to really live…to love my wife with all my strength…that’s my career now.

And I’ve never been happier.

Ever. ☺

Peace out, y’all.

I love you all.

I’ll see you online.

Chris

 

Watch the Warcraft Movie HD Digital Today on PC/Mobile

Duncan Jones & Legendary Pictures’ WARCRAFT (The Movie) HD Digital version will be available on September 13th (Today). The physical WARCRAFT BLU-Ray will ship on September 27th. Pre-order it now with its 43% discount.

CORRECTION: After chatting with a customer service representative, I learned that you can watch the WARCRAFT movie today ONLY if you pre-ordered or purchase the WARCRAFT HD Digital version as a stand-alone — (valued at $14.99). It can be streamed to PC/Mac, Kindle devices, XBox One/360, PS4/PS3, Roku and other devices.

If you pre-ordered the WARCRAFT (BLU-Ray/DVD/HD Digital) version for $19.99 — then you must wait until the shipping date: September 27th. Then redeem the digital code (coming inside the BLU-RAY/DVD) to watch the HD Digital version. So you won’t be able to stream the HD Digital version in the Blu-Ray until Sept 27.

warcraft-movie-blu-ray