This year 40,000 people were said to be in attendance! Oh, and there’s a music connection too! Since 2005 the likes of The Offspring, The Foo Fighters, Tenacious D, Muse, Blink-182, Linkin Park and Metallica have all performed at the closing ceremony. Less impressively, this year it was Train.
Yet, in the absence of a superstar musical headliner, the conference certainly delivered on the gaming news. If you couldn’t make it, don’t fear. We collected all the biggest stories to come out of it which we’re presenting to you here.
No need to thank us. For the horde! Speaking of which…
There’s going to be a Warcraft III remake!
Fans of oversized armour rejoice! It’s been confirmed that ‘sometime next year’, a remake of the seminal real time strategy game Warcraft III: Reign Of Chaos, is coming. Entitled Warcraft III: Reforged, we’re hearing it’ll be a Complete Edition – which means the inclusion of expansion pack The Frozen Throne. Intriguingly, it’s not just a graphical update – though, since the game arrived as far back as 2002, that’s more than welcome. There’s also going to be a bunch of modified campaign maps. Designer Michael Scipione told PC Gamer that the brief was to “not break the game” but to expect rerecorded and redone voiceover and cut-scenes. In other Warcraft news, following World Of Warcraft’s first major patch – Tides Of Vengeance – due on December 11th, the second patch, the largely underwater Rise Of Azshara was announced. No arrival date yet, though we’re hearing there’ll be a whole new continent included, called Mechagon. Gnomes that replace their body parts with robot limbs live there! Last but not least, World Of Warcraft: Classic, which arrives next summer, now has an online demo available to anyone with a WOW subscription. It’s only available until November 8th, and there’ll be limited playtime to deal with the demand.
There’s new Diablo… but it’s not what you were expecting!
Despite Blizzard attempting to temper expectations that BlizzCon might see the announcement of the long-awaited Diablo 4 – even going so far as to release a blog declaring ‘good things come to those who wait… but evil things often take longer’ before the conference even began! – the news that the new Diablo announced at the conference wouldn’t be the sequel to 2012’s brilliant Diablo 3 caused the internet to melt. It’s a shame the announcement received such an angry reaction, because it’s not all bad news. The Diablo we are getting (which is going by the name Diablo Immortal) is a mobile game. Apparently, it takes place between the events of Diablo 2 and 3, and we have to say, it looks beautiful. No new news yet however on the animated Diablo series that’s rumoured to be coming to Netflix, but we do know that Andrew Cosby – writer of the Hellboy reboot – is on board.
There was plenty of Overwatch news!
BlizzCon has long been kind to Overwatch. First unveiled at the event four years ago, subsequent years’ announcements will never be as seismic – but this year’s are pretty good! The world’s most fun hero shooter is getting a new character, Ashe. She’s a gunslinger, she carries a rifle, has a past that concerns Jesse McCree (who also stars predominantly in the new cinematic short – Reunion – that Blizzard showcased this weekend, alongside a character called Echo that we believe will be playable in time) and she’s got a robot butler called B.O.B! Not only that, but after showing off the fruits of the Overwatch/Lego team-up last month – a limited-edition Bastion figure – the conference announced that Lego versions of (deep breath) Tracer, Widowmaker, Hanzo, Genji, Soldier, 76, McCree, D.Va, Reinhardt, Pharah, Mercy, Reaper and Winston are coming on January 1st 2019. What we’re most excited about though, is that Lucio-Oh’s – Overwatch’s in-game cereal – are, thanks to a team up with Kellogg’s and an online campaign to make it so, getting an actual physical release! We’re hearing they’ll have a ‘sonic vanilla’ flavour, and that they’ll include a redeemable Loot Boost!
The best of the rest!
Overwatch isn’t the only Blizzard title getting a new character. Heroes Of The Storm – the multiplayer-online-battle-arena-game (we’re just going to call it a ‘hero brawler’ thanks) featuring characters from Warcraft, Diablo, StarCraft, The Lost Vikings and Overwatch – announced the arrival of Orphea, the first character to be designed for the game, rather than imported from another Blizzard franchise. There’s also going to be a load of new skins and quests added to the game next year. There’s been a new expansion announced for Hearthstone – it’s called Rastakhan’s Rumble, it has a new keyword, Overkill, and there’ll be a variety of new cards too. And, it’s all about trolls! StarCraft II has a new co-op commander, Zeratul. And, if you’re really quick, Destiny 2 is free to download from Battle.net until November 18th, which is a sweet deal!
For more news on all things Blizzard, visit blizzard.com/en-us/