BlizzCon 2010 News Round-Up: Everything in One Place!

Nathan Grayson

Hey everyone! We’re at BlizzCon, by which we mean we’re playing as much Diablo III as our broken, caffeine-riddled bodies will allow. However, some angry, impressively large-looking Blizzard people just approached us with looks in their eyes that basically said, “remove your hands from that demo station or we’ll remove your hands,” so we decided to graciously allow others to give the game a try.

So now we’re writing, because we suppose that’s our job or something. Anyway, BlizzCon! Stuff happened. Find out about that stuff below.

Diablo III “way over half-way done”
– Sorry, folks. No release date this year. Fortunately, just as we prepared ourselves to walk away from the convention information-starved and tail between our legs, Blizzard threw us a bone. See, Diablo III’s “close” to launching its friends and family beta. And according to the developer, when that beta churns to life, Diablo III will be “close” to completion. So close, yet so far away.

StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm won’t be out until after 2011
– You’ve crossed StarCraft II’s space-finish line. You know that [SPOILER] and [SPOILER] [SPOILER] [SPOILER]. So, what’s next? Well, probably some major life milestones, the discovery of a new hobby, renewed faith in your relationship, a divorce – you know, typical stuff that happens over the course of at least two years. Blizzard’s dedication to quality is a double-edged sword, so get comfortable, everyone. But hey, it’s not all bad news, because…

Blizzard to release its own StarCraft II mods, including Blizzard DOTA
– Valve, it looks like the gauntlet has been thrown. Using StarCraft II’s extremely versatile backend, Blizzard’s crafting its own take on the Defense of the Ancients gametype that sprang forth from Warcraft III’s incredibly fertile womb. In addition, Blizzard announced three other mods: Starjewled, Left 2 Die, and Aiur Chef. We’ll have previews of them all up next week, but here’s the gist: they’re all awesome, and they’ll all be completely free to StarCraft II owners. And if that’s not enough, Blizzard’s promised “waves and waves” of free content in the years leading up to Heart of the Swarm’s release.

Next Blizzard MMO not likely to be announced until 2012
Have years of rigorous adventuring and indiscriminate gizzard-removal dimmed the flames of your love for WoW down to a dull spark? Are you ready to make a clean break and finally move on? Well, sad to say, the game’s hot sister probably won’t be available for a while. Or maybe four, five, or 60 “whiles,” depending on your definition.

Diablo III’s final class, PVP arenas unveiled Hoping for a familiar face? Maybe some Paladin action, or your good ol’ soul-sucking, irredeemably evil pal, the Necromancer? Well, sorry, but you’ll just have to make do with the Demon Hunter. Here’s the thing, though: she’s fantastic. Basically, she’s a ranger with a focus on crossbows and traps, but her playstyle’s extremely fast-paced and versatile. She may be our favorite class, although the monk’s giving her some stiff competition. As for PVP arenas, there’s no way Blizzard will be able to balance them, but they’re so chaotic and fun that we don’t care.

Hey, speaking of Diablo III, Blizzard’s official Demo Station Guard Gorillas appear to be out having a smoke at the moment, so we’re just gonna creep back over and--OH GOD WHERE DID THEY COME FROM. WAIT, NO. WE NEED THOSE HANDS FOR DELIGHTING ORPHANS WITH SHADOW PUPPETS!

Check back all next week for in-depth BlizzCon previews and analysis! Oh, oh my. Did they just take his hands and…? Goodness me, I think I’m going to be sick.

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