BlizzCon 2016 Opening Ceremony was held by Blizzard Entertainment CEO Mike Morhaime who discussed the 25th Anniversary of the company, and the 20th Anniversary of Diablo.
Narrator: Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome President and CEO of Blizzard Entertainment Mike Morhaime!
Morhaime: Alliance and Horde. Terran, Protoss, and Zerg. Heroes of Sanctuary. Heroes of the Storm. Heroes of Overwatch. Fellow gamers and friends. Welcome to BlizzCon 2016. Can you believe this is our 10th BlizzCon together.
The BlizzCon 2016 World of Warcraft: Legion What’s Next Panel revealed details about the upcoming Patch 7.1.5, 7.2 and 7.3. The panel was hosted by Ion Hazzikostas.
Narrator: Welcome to the World of Warcraft: Legion What’s Next panel.
Hazzikostas: Hello, Blizzcon! I love it. This is the best time of year. Thank you all so much for coming out coming all this way from across the country, from across the world to celebrate the community that we’ve built together, and to learn about what’s coming next at some of your favorite Blizzard games.
So I know sometimes you might be hoping that you are going to be in attendance for the announcement of an all new expansion, but this is not one of those years, we are way too soon.
We’re working on one, of course, but we’re not going to talk about that right now today. Today is all about Legion, and what is coming next for you, and for us, and for everyone in Azeroth.
Legion interview — Dperchonok (Blizzplanet reporter) interviewed Michael Bybee (senior game producer) and Brian Holinka (senior game designer) to discuss details of the upcoming World of Warcraft: Legion Patch 7.1.5, Patch 7.2, and Patch 7.3.
The Activision Blizzard 2016 Q3 financial conference call was held on November 3 (the day before BlizzCon started), and for the second time in a row it didn’t feature a roundup by Mike Morhaime. Thomas Tippl discussed the progress and status of Blizzard games, with some highlights by Bob Kotick. Mike Morhaime was present during the conference, however. He participated in the Q&A at the end.
Kotick: We delivered another record quarter, and we continue to focus on building enduring franchises for our nearly 500 million monthly players around the world. Continuous innovation within existing franchises, and the creation of new franchises (like Overwatch) helps broaden our audiences, deepen engagement, and increase player investment.
We believe gaming is the most engaging form of media, and players spend tens of billions of hours a year with our franchises. In fact, this quarter alone, our players spent over 10 billion hours playing our games. This strong engagement and the social experiences that are such an important part of gameplaying have been the catalyst for our new opportunities in enhanced game monetization, expansion of our franchises into linear media and consumer products, and greater involvement in advertising supported spectator gaming like we have with MLG.
It is estimated that as many as 225 million people are now watching organized gaming competitions. Competition between videogame players is becoming as thrilling to watch as traditional professional sports. With the launch of professional global leagues, we believe games spectating will grow significantly as an opportunity for us and for our players. The increased popularity of spectator gaming will enable us to celebrate and reward our players, and recognize their accomplishments. Professional gamers will eventually be as celebrated, honored, and recognized as professional athletes.
Professional gamers will be the role models and goodwill ambassadors of the digital generation, and we believe great new business opportunities are emerging throughout the esports ecosystem, which we helped pioneer more than a decade ago with games like StarCraft.
In May, Blizzard released Overwatch, which in about four months has already eclipsed 20 million registered players making it Blizzard’s fastest, new intellectual property to reach that mark; and Overwatch was specifically designed to be a definitive competitive game.
We are uniquely positioned to realize the full potential of esports. We have some of the most successful iconic franchises in gaming, and direct relationships with nearly half a billion monthly active users. A powerful combination that distinguishes us from the rest of our competitors; and we have unmatched commercial capabilities that have served our shareholders extremely well over the last 25 years.
Before I hand off the call, I want to take this opportunity to thank the talented people who drive the success at our company every day. They are our greatest asset, inspiring play, competition and community by creating the most engaging entertainment in the world.
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!!!
Activision Blizzard announced better-than-expected and Record 2016 Q3 financial results with nearly 1 billion in revenue from in-game content.
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.
Blizzard 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 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
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.”