Bottom line: Blizzard is making some changes to its event plans amid a slew of sexual assault allegations and scrutiny by federal investigators. Instead of hosting an online-only “BlizzConline” conference next year, the company is abandoning the concept entirely so it can direct its resources to what it thinks is more important: game development.
Blizzard said this was a difficult decision, but ultimately the right one for their business moving forward. He wants to spend some time “reimagining” what BlizzCon is and what it should be while using the resources it provides by not hosting the event to support his teams and “moving forward” with the development of his games and experiences.
Blizzard’s ad post is mostly corporate content, and doesn’t directly mention any of the controversies it has recently found itself embroiled in (likely for legal reasons). However, the company says it is committed to making future BlizzCon events as safe, welcoming, and “inclusive” as possible. In other words, more “Cosby Suites,” at least not anytime soon.
This news may disappoint some Blizzard fans, and frankly, that includes me. It’s been years since we’ve had a large-scale BlizzCon event, and I really hope this gap is temporary and not the strategy Blizzard plans to employ in 2023 and beyond. It’s always fun to see the reactions of fans who are excited (or angry) when new Blizzard games and content are revealed, even if those reactions are hypothetical.
Either way, there is a silver lining here. Ads for various Blizzard franchises are still coming in, and they won’t happen at a central event. Instead, you’ll see them spread across various “franchise channels,” which likely means many of the game’s Blizzard social media profiles and blogs.
The BlizzCon team will help “support” these efforts, so they can be even more hot and eye-catching than usual. If there’s one thing the people at BlizzCon are good at, it’s giving a show, through thick and thin.
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