Presenting its quarterly results, Activision Blizzard revealed a report that won’t please Blizzard fans at all. Their two highly anticipated games – Overwatch 2 and Diablo IV – have been pushed back to 2023. In February, there was an expectation that we would see both games for next year.
The reason for this internal delay is also interesting. Indeed, in recent months, the most common reason for the delay was probably COVID-19, which has disrupted the pace of development of all game projects. However, in Blizzard’s case, these are delays caused by massive changes in the company’s leadership positions and in project development that are in part related to the lawsuit against Activision Blizzard regarding sexism, sexual harassment and racism.
In the course of this action, several prominent developers of both projects were “launched” and their replacement meant a burden for development. Plus, he left the face of the Overwatch series, Jeff Kaplan, which certainly didn’t help either.
“With new leadership at Blizzard and the development of projects within the studio, particularly in the lead creative roles, it has become clear that some content from Blizzard planned for next year will need more time to reach its potential. We’re still planning a lot of content from Blizzard next year, but Diablo IV and Overwatch 2 will be released later than we expected. These are the two most anticipated games in the industry and our teams are doing an amazing job towards completing them. But we believe giving them more time to complete production and improving creative resources to support these games post-release will ensure that communities enjoy the years to come.”
“This decision will have financial implications for the year ahead, but we believe this is the right course of business for our employees, players and the long-term future of the brands,” said COO Daniel Allegri.
Especially for fans of Overwatch, this is very unpleasant news. Blizzard long ago stopped supporting the unit and promised a quick arrival of the second unit. The last hero was added to the game in April 2020, which means that players will have to wait more than three years for new content.
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