So this past weekend wasn’t the greatest one for Blizzard Entertainment. BlizzCon itself was a massive success, and there were some good announcements. But the publisher took some heavy backlash over their debut Diablo Immortal trailer for mobile.
It’s seen some heavy controversy over the weekend, including a whopping amount of backlash from fans and a report about negative comments being removed from YouTube, possibly by the publisher themselves -- not confirmed, though.
With that, Blizzard co-founder Allen Adham recently spoke to Kotaku about the response to the trailer. He knew that it would get some backlash from the fanbase, but “not to this degree.”
“We know our audience here is passionately PC- and console-focused," he explained. "We’ve also seen this before. We saw a similar response when we announced that we were bringing Diablo to console, and we saw a similar response to the announcement of Hearthstone.”
“They love what they love and want what they want. That passion, it’s actually what drives us, and we feel it too. It’s why we make games and why we’ve made games for almost three decades now -- and why our community is so passionate about our franchises. I understand their feeling and wish we could share more about all the amazing things we’re doing, not just with the Diablo franchise but across the company as a whole.”
But just because Immortal is taking focus doesn’t mean fans don’t have something to look forward to in the future. "I know our community here, there’s a concern that we are focused on this instead of that," Adham explained. "The truth is that we have multiple Diablo teams working on multiple unannounced Diablo projects even after announcing [Immortal].”
That didn’t stop fans from insisting that Immortal was a “reskin” of other games being made by its developer, Netease. But Adham denied the matter, noting that the game has been “purpose-built from the ground up. In the East, that control method is becoming ubiquitous, and it’s becoming ubiquitous because it’s very natural, and it feels great. Less so in the West, but we’re now starting to see some games that are bringing that mechanic to the West. So it’s us taking inspiration from some of the work they’ve done already.”
There’s still a lot of doubt behind Immortal, but hopefully Blizzard will have more answers for us soon.
The game doesn’t have a release date, but is expected some time in 2019.