Watching a convention that’s celebrating something you’re not into is a weird experience. I mean, normally most people just wouldn’t do it at all, but in my case, MMO news and all of that, plus friends chatting it up on Twitter.
BlizzCon was, as always, quite the production and spectacle, and I’m sure it was a blast for those who attended. But for me? It was fairly tepid stuff. There were no huge game reveals (Blizzard decided to blow its Legion announcement months ago), World of Warcraft continued to get pushed into the background, and Blizzard is certainly hammering home the point that it’s diversifying its library, darnit.
The Warcraft movie trailer was a huge disappointment. It looked every inch the generic fantasy SyFy channel presentation, albeit with a higher budget. Orcs are such a turn-off to me, so to have the movie be about them and the bland humans is like picking the least interesting aspects of this franchise and running with it.
On the other hand, props to Blizzard’s cinematics team for creating a slam-bang Legion trailer that was — as always — quite well-done. So much so that it put the movie trailer to shame, in my opinion.
Diablo III really isn’t exciting to me these days (although it was a solid title), and I couldn’t care less about Overwatch, Heroes of the Storm, or Hearthstone. Or Starcraft II, I think that’s still a thing. I’m just not part of the Blizzard ecosystem in the same way that, say, SOE players used to be back when SOE Live came out.
BlizzCon is weird to me because of the WoW hype (again, less this year than in years previous… perhaps because Blizzard is bleeding subs like crazy and is actually going to stop reporting on how many players are in the game after this quarter). It’s kind of like how I feel any time I hear or read a story about my old college. It’s a place that I used to belong to and have strong memories and emotions relating to it, but it’s also not where I’m at now.
I think it’d be too weird to go back to WoW. Sure, I think about it now and again, and I’m sure that a lot of ex-WoW players feel that pull around BlizzCon time. But I think about the sub fee, and I think about how happy I am with the games I’m enjoying, and I think about catching up to the new content and systems, and I think about how the world and classes that I used to know and enjoy don’t really exist as they did back in 2008 (when I was last playing full-time).
But one never knows. There’s something about WoW’s design and personality that I’ve always loved (which is also why I’m so attracted to WildStar). If I did go back, I think I’d start all over with a fresh character and play uber-casually. I wouldn’t want to touch garrisons with a ten-foot pole, however.