Earlier today the gaming giant known as Activision Blizzard held its third quarter financial conference call. As per usual, the company’s report (.pdf) was largely designed to make it look as competent and well-run as possible for the benefit of shareholders, a feat the firm handily accomplished by focusing heavily on the blockbuster computer games the Blizzard Entertainment half of the corporation released over the course of 2012, specifically Diablo III and the Mists Of Pandaria expansion for World of Warcraft.
Of course, hearing that Blizzard’s games sell well is as useful to you readers as hearing that the sky is blue or that kittens are, in fact, adorable. The most interesting part of this conference call actually had nothing to do with Activision Blizzard’s finances, and instead focused on two titles that we likely won’t even see for months to come.
Though you won’t find it in the official records of the call released by Activision Blizzard, during the conference call Blizzard president Mike Morhaime confirmed that Blizzard is already hard at work on developing an expansion for Diablo III (which, for the record, has now sold more than 10 million units since launch). “We do have an expansion planned for Diablo. I don’t have any timeline to talk about yet,” Morhaime said. “I think the most important thing for us always comes down to the quality of the expansion and the gameplay, so that will be a big factor in terms of driving our schedule.” In sum, Blizzard will release this expansion, whatever it might be called, when it’s done, so expect to see this thing on store shelves at some nebulous point in the future. Probably.
On the flip side, Morhaime was slightly more specific about the upcoming release of the Heart of the Swarm expansion for StarCraft II (pictured in beta form above). He claims that this expansion should see retail during the first half of 2013, and while that’s vague, it’s the most precise pre-release window we can recall Morhaime ever offering this far ahead of a game being officially completed. We fully expected a “it will be done when it’s done” from Morhaime, and would have been perfectly content with that, but if the man suddenly wants to start making promises about when we’ll be able to play his company’s games, we welcome the opportunity to report it to the masses.
As exciting as all of this is, objectively it’s not actually a lot of information. Still, we know how you boys and girls love Blizzard’s games, so expect further reports to follow as we learn more about Blizzard’s next two projects.
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