BlizzCon, video game giant Blizzard Entertainment’s semi-annual gaming convention, wrapped up this weekend after two solid days of developer panels, exclusive interviews, eSports tournaments, and a closing ceremony concert by thrash metal legends Metallica. Tickets for BlizzCon, notoriously difficult to procure outside of those within the industry, were priced $199 for both days and sold out online within minutes of going on sale.
Among the big stories to come out of BlizzCon were the announcements of the cast reveal for Blizzard’s feature film Warcraft based off of the massive World of Warcraft multiplayer online role playing franchise as well as the reveal of the company’s new multiplayer first person shooter Overwatch.
L.A. Times Hero Complex reports that the character breakdown for Warcraft will feature two warring tribes the Alliance, featuring humans, dwarves, night elves, gnomes and others, and the Horde, featuring orcs, trolls, blood elves, trolls and more. The film will be directed by Duncan Jones, who also co-wrote the script, and is a joint venture with Legendary Pictures, which also announced an online promotion in which fans can choose their allegiance and sign up for movie updates from the perspective of their chosen tribe at fightforthealliance.com or fightforthehorde.com. ‘Warcraft’ is scheduled for theatrical release in 3-D on March 11, 2016.
Overwatch, set for open beta play in 2015, features squad-based combat with two opposing teams of six players each and will emphasize cooperative gameplay whereby players will have to learn to apply their character’s strengths for the good of the whole team.
Overwatch is set on a near-future Earth with a cast of heroes including mercenaries, scientists, and adventurers that do battle in arenas like the streets of London or the pyramids of Egypt. IGN.com reports that following the announcement, BlizzCon attendees were treated to a demo video featuring gameplay.
BlizzCon began in 2005 and has grown to become one of the premiere pop culture conventions in the United Stated and enjoys upwards of 25,000 attendees for each event. The allure of BlizzCon enjoys a reach that has transcended the video game industry and attracted top acts from across the entertainment world such as Blink-182, the Foo Fighters, Ozzy Osbourne and BlizzCon regular comedian/sports talk host Jay Mohr. A select allotment of BlizzCon tickets were made available for $750 as a fundraiser for Children’s Hospital of Orange County and included BlizzCon VIP swag and a provide dinner with Blizzard executives, artists, and developers as well as BlizzCon event coordinators and organizers.