IRVINE, Calif. -- Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. today announced that, sadly, the long awaited Diablo® III slated to be released in early 2012 will be cancelled, with no future plans for reinstatement. The situation that led to this extreme measure arose during internal beta testing when it became clear that the game cannot be released in its current state and no amount of balancing would repair the fundamentally broken core.
We regret having upset die-hard Diablo fans who have been waiting almost 10 years for a sequel to the award-winning Diablo® II, but we hope fans will understand the situation, and will continue to play our wonderful games from the universes of StarCraft and Warcraft as well as the upcoming MMO we have yet to announce.
While at this point we cannot promise that the Diablo® universe will be revived at a future date, we are already studying the possibility of a completely overhauled Diablo® IV, which, hypothetically, will not reach beta testing earlier than 2021, with the (hypothetical) possibility of release some time in 2022.
If this sounds fake, that's because it is. Don't despair, dear friends, Blizzard has not forsaken us (yet). What made me write this controversial post is a very intriguing and thought-provoking article I read today on IncGamers. The funny thing is that I had similar thoughts in my head and that article was just the catalyst I needed to post this.
Essentially, IncGamers' article talks about how Blizzard managed to botch up Diablo 3's beta. Reading through it, I can't help but agree with the points they make. It really does seem that something went wrong in Blizzard's planning. If nothing else, I'm almost convinced that they announced the beta much too soon.
My idea, however, was along the lines of "what if Blizzard cancels Diablo 3?" This wouldn't be the first time in history they cancelled a game. Of course, StarCraft Ghost wasn't in public beta when it got postponed indefinitely.
But what if, after this fiasco of a beta, Blizzard found some major issues with Diablo 3? What if they suddenly realized that the skill system is all messed up? Or the classes and character levels are completely imbalanced? What if the acts/zones/monsters/items aren't finished yet? What if a zillion other things went wrong?
Now I realize that all this is empty speculation and almost certainly a load of rubbish. Still, I keep getting this weird feeling in the pit of my stomach. Though it's highly improbable, to the point of impossibility, I think we'd all be devastated if Blizzard decided to pull a "StarCraft Ghost" on us.
Remember, the fake Blizzard press release above is fake. It is, I hope, a harmless joke. Blizzard did not make that announcement. It was all made up by me.