Tobold's Blog
Wednesday, October 08, 2008
Guess the BlizzCon 2008 announcement

The BlizzCon 2008 starts Friday, and traditionally Mike Morhaime walks onto the stage at these sort of events and announces some big news, like a new Blizzard game. But as he already announced Diablo III in Paris this year, and the release date for Wrath of the Lich King has already been announced as well, it is hard to guess what he'll announce at the BlizzCon 2008 this weekend. Nothing? Patch 3.0 for WoW? World of Warcraft II? World of Starcraft? Something completely unexpected? Or something lame like when exactly in 2009 Starcraft II will be released? Or will Mike not appear at all, being busy searching for where his $4 billion went?

As my crystal ball fails me, this is your chance to out-prognosticate me. What is your guess for the big announcement of the BlizzCon 2008? Only prize I can offer is a mention in the blog post about the announcement for the first non-anonymous poster who guessed it right. 15 minutes of fame, isn't that something? So go, give me your best guess!
Diablo 3 related news. i.e. new classes

Other than that, just a recap of their year behind, and hype of the upcoming year.
I'm wondering if it will be the next WoW Expansion but with their 1 a year (every 2 years) policy this might be too early.

Alternatively, its this secret MMO we've been hearing about or more info on Starcraft 2.
gested and it might be a date for next year related to that.

Agree with first poster, Diablo 3 classes.
.....or actually perhaps an announcement that after much consultation with the Russian government (and truckloads of money to the Kremlin), Blizzard have acquired a portion of Siberia and the Arctic Circle and have renamed the principality Northrend.
I don't know what will be announced, but for sure it won't be a release date.

Release dates had been always announced outside conventions :)

just my 2 euro cents
City Seiges for WoW :)

They don't usually do release dates, but being a public company now, in the current market, perhaps a SC2 release date might not be a bad guess.
For the first time in Blizcon.. nothing new will be announced.
Yea.. stupid bet. But I put my two copper on that.
Ranked battle grounds that reward arena points and arena rating.

A permanent arena tournament realm with pre-made 80s for anyone who leveled up a character to

More WoW world PVP areas in the works.

A fourth race for Star Craft II.

New Diablo 3 trailer.

BlizzCon to be held next year in a much larger area thus allowing 250,000 people to attend at various venues around the area.
Diablo and Starcraft news is likely, but I'm hoping for some news about future plans for Warcraft.
Big announcements will be a starcraft 2 beta date. (I'm doubtful that they will give a release date until some more testing has been done, but it's certainly a possibility.)

A new diablo 2 class will be announced, but that may or may not be the sort of official "big announcement" (though it will draw a lot of interest)

Wrath of the Lich King is coming out in a month, so there will be nothing huge new left to announce for it.

A fourth race for Star Craft II.

This is extremely doubtful, given all the announcements about "We're just sticking to three races". (There was one that said possibly a fourth race in the expansion, but that won't appear for awhile into the future.)
I posted my predictions here:

But here is a recap

Diablo III: Two new classes, magic and a range (i.e. Sorceress and Amazon)

New Hero Class (before the next WoW Expansion)

World of Warcraft movie Trailer

From what I could find out through blogs and forums covering Legendary Pictures, the Warcraft film doesn't even have a director yet. I don't think we'll be seeing a trailer at Blizzcon.

I think they could be doing the big reveal for their next MMO.
For the new World of Warcraft movie, they are going with Uwe Boile as the director.
Diablo 3 classes is the easy guess, and is probably right on. That's the simplest "big" announcement they could make and still get people excited. Beyond that it will just be WoW improvements, including the ability to switch between 2 different specs without suffering a respec fee each time. They're starting to realize that they need to eliminate the remaining hurdles to PVP regularly.
"being busy searching for where his $4 billion went?"

All industry sectors have substained hugh losses, All the gains on Dow Jones and TSX since 2005 have been wiped out. So the above statement taken out of context of the rest of the industry sectors is inflamatory at best, as all industry sectors are suffering not just the gaming.
If you would have followed the link you would have found the LA Times article stating that the game industry, and ActivisionBlizzard in particular, lost far more money than the NASDAQ and other industries.
For the record: Uwe Boile (a tickect to movie flopdom) - will not be director of the Warcraft Movie.

The only pre-production credit thus for is Chris Metzen as writer/screenplay. This is a good move.

The Warcraft movie is officially pencilled for 2009 (not 100% fixed). Thus making this a very possible release platform to announce.

I'm not even 100% sure this will be a live action movie given the talent of Bliz to produced blinding cgi.

I'm staying anon but that's my prediction. Seeing that when this movie goes into production, cast's have to be named... thus Blizzard want to be the controlling factor in this and want the stage to announce it too... this is perfect timing.

18 months is about a decent cycle time to churn out the movie on the back of a 3rd expansion.
OK, I'll jump in with both feet:

Blizzard will steal all of the thunder from Bioware/EA this year by announcing World of Starcraft and showing gameplay footage of the inter-planetary spaceship mounts.

Release date? Hah! When it's done, of course!
No Splash Screens = No Big Announcement.

As others have already stated it doesn't look likely that a new project can be announced - they have enough irons in the fire already right now. Most likely is a new feature or three for each of the games, with any luck some sort of meaty SCII announcement regarding its release date, and some new tech.

Still, I would have expected Blizzard to hold over the Diablo 3 announcement till Blizzcon if they didn't have anything else to plug at Blizzcon.

So... new stuff would be my guess if I was to make one. SC:Ghost on the outside ;).

*goes off to find out where to get Blizzcon info this weekend*
Blizz will announce their NEXT wow expansion, featuring -- you guessed it -- an increase in level cap from 80 to 90!! This will render all your existing DK gear, points, marks, and badges obsolete but giving you new talents, thereby blurring class distinction even more but offering you a slightly less imbalanced PvP experience.

Joking aside, I don't expect anything noteworthy other than what has been mentioned in previous posts.
They will announce they bought the Star Trek online franchise and are going to name it World of Star Trek, where the entire game is one arena after another, with a lackluster pve game of clicking on colored lights on the bridge. Different levels have different arenas:

levels 1-10: Metron prime (you have no gear in this arena)
levels 11-20: Tsunkatse: (gear begins to matter here)
levels 21-30: Triskelion: you'll need 4000 federation points to last more than a few seconds at this level
levels 31-40: Kalifee: this is dominated by the OP'd Science Officer class, with their "breath holding" buff and numerous dots.
A new Lost Vikings
A new Lost Vikings
(sorry for the comment above, pressed enter too fast)
I think the big announcement might actually be the next WoW expansion. I think Activision is getting on their case about not releasing content fast enough and they are reacting. They are pushing Wrath out earlier than they normally would and they are gonna try to stick to one expansion a year.

Let's hope this doesn't mean a drastic drop in quality, but if they can keep it 90% as good as they do and come out much faster, WoW would not get stale like it feels right now.
I bet they have hidden something in WolK they haven't revealed yet and will anounce it.

Alternatively they simply anounce Stracraft 2 will ship on christmas.
Speaking of, I have to wonder if they are going to rejigger the system to have a "premium" service with a concurrent monthly fee.
They will surely present a new and totally revamped service.

It will be used for both SC2 and D3

it was already hinted under the lines at Paris that a new was under development and now it will be shown
Well the Diablo 3 developers in previous interviews have more or less said they will announce a class or classes at Blizzcon. They have also heavily hinted at a major reveal of 2.0 at Blizzcon.

With that in mind I think we can expect:
Starcraft 2
-Release Date
-Closed Beta Date
-New unit(s)
-New cinematic

Diablo III
-New gameplay mechanics (skill system, dynamic "adventures," etc)
-At least one, most likely two new classes (one of which will a ranged, caster class)

-New gameplay mechanics (dual talent spec system has been confirmed but others will appear)
-Some new feature inspired but recent MMOs but done with the usual Blizzard polish 2.0
-Steam + Xbox Live + facebook + + secret sauce = best online social gaming service yet

Here's hoping.
It seems very odd to have a Blizzcon only one month before the release of WOTLK without having some big WOW-related announcement. However, the lack of any massive splash screen meme like the one that preceeded the D3 announcement means that it has to be something exciting yet not super major.

Therefore, I predict that Blizzard will surprise most pundits by announcing that DKs will be playable up through 70 with the 3.0.2 patch -- but that they will be locked come the release of WOTLK unless you have upgraded your account.
I believe they're going to announce some new Mobile features for WoW that they've been developing for the past several months. I"m picturing an iPhone app where we can access Armory functions as well as in game mail, guild interaction, bank and inventory checking and hopefully a mobile auction house interface. THat would rock! And may even be enough to convince me to get an iphone!
Vivendi/Blizzard/Activision will buy out EA and publish World of Fifa with one expansion every(!) year, introducing a new colour for PvP rewards (apart from minor stats redistributions, the gear remains unchanged). Other than that, gameplay will not be affected.

Sounds (too) familiar?
Perhaps the Bejeweled inclusion will be accompanied by Peggle in the Auction House, Chuzzle in the Inns, and Duck Hunt off Hunter Rise.
They're going to announce news about the Warcraft movie.

I think it's too soon to announce the next expansion pack or next-gen MMO, and they usually save announcements about specific mechanics and features of a game to the gameplay panels.
Pretty sure I called this:
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