Blizzard's release schedule leaked?

Purported release slate shows next Starcraft and Diablo III coming in Q4 2011, mystery game "Titan" due in 2013.

Source: Massively multiplayer-focused site MMOGameSite.

What we heard: Sometimes even the thinnest of rumors spark massive interest. Take the case of an allegedly leaked image on MMOGameSite purporting to be of Blizzard's release schedule for the next four years. Though the image could have been easily faked and has the barest of attribution, it does lay out an intriguingly realistic release schedule for the powerful publisher-developer's upcoming lineup.

Is this Blizzard's big release schedule?

First up on the schedule is Battle.net, the second version of which launched earlier this year. According to the schedule, a map market for the online service will launch in the second quarter of 2011, followed by third-party offerings a la Steam in the first quarter of 2012.

Next on the schedule is Starcraft II, the first part of which, Wings of Liberty, launched in July and has already sold over 3 million units. The next installment in the three-part game, the Heart of the Swarm, is apparently set for a holiday release next year, with the third, Legacy of the Void, coming in the first quarter of 2013. Curiously, a fourth Starcraft II product, code-named "Phoenix" is also scheduled for a fourth quarter 2011 release date--perhaps indicating a two-game pack with Wings of Liberty and Heart of the Swarm is in the offing.

Next up is Diablo III, which will also ship in Q4 2011 according to the schedule. The role-playing game--which may also be coming to consoles, according to recent job listings--is slated to have two expansions: One in Q2 2013 and a second in Q4 2014.

Then there's World of Warcraft. Following next week's launch of the Cataclysm expansion, the next big thing on the WOW horizon is the game's Brazilian launch in the third quarter of 2011. The fourth WOW expansion is listed as arriving in Q2 2012, followed by a new WOW trading card game the following quarter. The schedule also has the World of Warcraft film debuting in Q4 2012, a date which may slip since director Sam Raimi is apparently directing a Wizard of Oz prequel next.

According to the schedule, a fifth World of Warcraft expansion is set for Q3 2013. That's the same quarter that a mystery project--code-named "Titan"--is also set to launch. Little is known about the mystery project, but Blizzard is rumored to be developing a massively multiplayer first-person shooter in the vein of Planetside.

The official story: "As always, we appreciate the interest in Blizzard's current and upcoming games, but we don't comment on rumors or speculation and we don't have any new announcements to make."--Blizzard rep.

Bogus or not bogus?: Too little to go on, but the release windows jibe with the approximate 18-to-24-month periods between Blizzard games. However, at the Game Developers Conference Online in October, Battle.net project director Greg Canessa said that the next Starcraft installment was 18 months away. That time frame makes it due in March or April of 2012, not Q4 2011. With Blizzard not talking, it's unclear if Canessa's comments are outdated, the schedule is outdated, or the schedule was made up out of thin air. However, if a Portuguese-language version of WOW pops up next year in Brazil, it will lend this schedule some serious credibility.

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Discussion

176 comments
Rod_MW
Rod_MW

I'm disappointed at Blizzard. I could understand a game like Duke Nukem taking forever to release, but not Diablo. I doubt this whole wait is mainly due slow development of gameplay and/or game polishment. Surely Blizzard is sitting on its butt, taking its time, figuring ways on how to make the most out of these games, economically speaking.

Link3301
Link3301

The one thing I noticed is that the schedule says that the next wow xpac comes out in Q2 2012. Thats about a year and a half after cata. In a interview, they said that players might not have to wait two years for the next expansion like they usually do.

mastermune89
mastermune89

sorry Blizzard, I have a life to get to, I cant wait around for you to decide when to release your next game.

Silicel1
Silicel1

Well I wouldn't mind if they would just say release date 2050 and be over it

frerol13
frerol13

I really hate all that secrecy within Blizzard's policy. It's just stupid.

traykey1
traykey1

Hmm, when Diablo 2 came out I was a young man. When Diablo 3 comes out, i will be an old man.

Cornholio_tp
Cornholio_tp

I figured they were gonna give a first look or maybe a trailer on the SC2 expansion at the last blizzcon. Apparently not.

koba905
koba905

Why they don't work on making games like SC2 and Diablo 3 bigger and then bring earlier games like SC3 Diablo 4 etc instead of making like 2-3 Expansion pack per game ?

KuRf
KuRf

TV puppet pals..TV puppet pals

clickclicktap
clickclicktap

I just get sick and tired of all of the speculated release dates. Would be nice to see something solid for a change. Looking forward to getting it though.

RavenXavier
RavenXavier

@ NFSruler : My friend, what do GT5 and Duke Nukem have to do with my earlier comment? Perhaps I'm missing something? @ mandy007 : I didn't say D3 would be coming out this year. I know it's been pushed back to next year. I don't think Blizzard purposefully puts out games far apart on purpose though. They do it the way they do simply because quality games take even an experienced team a long time to complete. @ rolo107 : I agree there is more content that needs to be finished, that's clear, but, as Vengeancekael pointed out, SC2 and WoW Cataclysm both came out/are coming this year.

RavenXavier
RavenXavier

@ Vengeancekael : Where did Blizzard respond to the rumors? I do know, as we can all see for a fact in Blizzards jobs listing that they ARE hiring a "Lead Designer, Console" for D3. That's a fact, as if it wasn't there wouldn't be a listing for the job they are wanting to fill. I agree they haven't "Officially Confirmed" it, the job listing wouldn't be there if they weren't porting it over. If the job listing points to the fact that they'll be porting it over, then they would push back the PC release to make a multi-platform launch. When I was in my 20's I did professional beta testing in house at EA Tiburon in Orlando Florida and I did some testing for Microsoft making the "MechCommander" series. The latest project I've worked on was "Elemental:War of Magic" for Stardock (my name is in the credits as RavenX) . Having been in the "Industry" I can tell you first hand companies have pushed back and delayed games in the past that were completely done just so they could maximize profits in a related area. This leads me to at the very least surmise that Blizzard would indeed push back the release until they see whether or not a console port would be possible. Even for a company as big and powerful as Blizzard, the name of the game here is "Money", my friend.

keith21uk
keith21uk

Think the Diablo III release date is very realistic. I bet they have the closed beta running in June. Yes I want to sign up to it too!

big-boss-91
big-boss-91

Titan? is this the rumoured game that is going to be annonouced very soon?

madSomnambulist
madSomnambulist

@ runtheplacered Marketing strategy/schedule is entirely different than procrastinating. Well... somewhat. Delaying or picking a release day when a product is finished/nearly finished is typical in order to figure when sales might be best. Procrastination begs the staff to be lazy as all hell for as long as possible if they know how long they can be lazy. Anyone in a modern workplace would LOVE to be able to know they had deadline extensions added at the end of a project, since they're otherwise going to sit around and do nothing until absolutely forced to.

Pr3acher
Pr3acher

christ I almost died of a friggin heart attack. imagine when they'll actually......... announce diablo 3 release date? i think i'll need a day off then.

ro_venancio
ro_venancio

Brazilian servers? Well, I'll finally play the trial and give this game a chance...

IrshDrkWlf
IrshDrkWlf

Its doubtful that this is real Blizzard is like Nintendo very tightlipped. If this were real then I doubt we would have seen it. WoW expansions are always 2 years apart and always in the 4th quarter, which is winter time.

xKratosAurionx
xKratosAurionx

Oh damn! I made that on Paint during my Accounting class. Did that get leaked to the internet?! Boy do i feel terrible! (; This is a bunch of bull crap.

Freche
Freche

fake, all wow expansions have had their releases 2 years between each other. Also Blizzard would never do 2 big releases during the same quarter. Sale numbers are too important, they want all their games to top the charts. SC2X and D3 at the same time wont happen, WoW X5 (if that would ever happen) and Titan wont happen.

Chainer323
Chainer323

guess someone at blizzard is gonna have an unmarry xmas lol

runtheplacered
runtheplacered

@madSomnambulist, "It's a sad day if a company ever officially sets up a procrastination-based release schedule instead of one actually based on when stuff is done." You apparently have no concept of what 'marketing strategy' means.

Dragonslorddieg
Dragonslorddieg

Well, it could be fake but I still believe in the fact that those name in the picture exist and could be out at any moment, diablo3 seem to be almost done so next year could be a good time on that release, next wow expansion not impress about they making another one to keep the game up (wouldn't be mad but put something else on it please) and about that Titan never underestimate the Blizzard Company maybe they want to be involve in something else then just Mythological Histories and Barbaric fights, I guess we'll just have to wait for couple more years to see what happens.

AzatiS
AzatiS

If this is valid i wouldnt want to see 2 WoW expansions in 2 and a half years.... Also Diablo3 all speculations were Q3 to Q4 2011 so in a way is valid. About Titan , dont think blizzard would ever release 2 games on exactly same Q. Especially if both were mmorpgs... That would hurt each other. Something that i doubt Blizzard would ever do. The "bad" thing is that as it seems we will never see a WARCRAFT 4 game soon enough. More likely will be a STARCRAFT 3 since wow seems go strong even into 2014-2015.

kenmanius
kenmanius

So what's left? Ysera and Alexstraza? 5 dragonflights equals five expansions i suppose.

Silvis121
Silvis121

I don't know, but all I got from the article is 2 more expansions for World of Warcrack and I wish they would come out with something else....

drig44
drig44

Minecraft is really made by Blizzard, Notch is just a coverup.

NFSruler
NFSruler

@RavenXavier GT5 would like to have a word with you. As would duke nukem forever.

D3thN1gh7
D3thN1gh7

I think the schedule is probably fake. But like the article says, we'll see. It will be kind of interesting actually to see if the upcoming games match anywhere close what the schedule says.

vrajitorugaoz
vrajitorugaoz

If they gave us at least a demo for diablo 3 now, it would last us until the full game release and also help them gain feedback from people about the product so far.

lazycomplife
lazycomplife

Silly Blizzard, your games end in "craft", with the exception of diablo. No way is blizzard making a new franchise!! But I would love a MMO borderlands, since borderlands reminded me of a FPS diablo. It was a never-ending quest for killing stuff for new loot.

krawk_ck77
krawk_ck77

Hey come on Blizzard cant keep plans on dates there games will be launched, we all know that lol This is one of there strong points no dates makes great games for blizzard :)

SkidRow18
SkidRow18

fake, diablo 3 will be release in 2030

xymt
xymt

no warcraft 4 for the next 6 years?

mandy007
mandy007

Vengeancekael I agree but the fact still remains the same as cataclysm is just a expansion where as diablo 3 is a massive title, dont you agree?

Mega_Loser
Mega_Loser

i see fanbois got to work in thumbsdowning poor megakick and Nosnitsttam for posting their non abusive opinion.

Mega_Loser
Mega_Loser

two diablo 3 expansions? oh goodie.... phoenix sounds like a phone game, to me. and assuming some1 in blizzard typed the schedule, notice how they treat sc2hos and sc2lov, as expansions.

d12malu
d12malu

Super excited for "Titan". Blizzard quality in a 1st-person MMO would get my money.

EnDeR2015
EnDeR2015

wow this would suck, i cant wait for dianlo 3 to be released q4, i wanted to be in q1 damn it

Nosnitsttam
Nosnitsttam

love how i got thumbs down for pointing out that blizzard only EVER says "when its done" when they're asked about release dates. i love blizzard and their games (minus WoW) but i do not like the massive wait for games.

minime78362
minime78362

@megakick: did you even play starcraft 2?

madSomnambulist
madSomnambulist

I'd say higher odds of being real if it wasn't tripping over itself with anything even close to being in the same quarter. I think a better news story here might be "Blizzard settings itself up to be lazy through 2015?" ... It's a sad day if a company ever officially sets up a procrastination-based release schedule instead of one actually based on when stuff is done.

megakick
megakick

really i don't care for either if i want to play a new gen dungeon crawler i can play vindictus and starcraft 2 60 dollars for one campaign and sum updates, ripoff.

nathan83_xp
nathan83_xp

this is fiscal year and quarters? then it make sense. 3 game spread from holidays to early spring.

OmegaTau
OmegaTau

@Nosnitsttam yea if it's real, then it's just there so blizz can please acti-blizz share holders. We all know blizzard doesn't release a games on the same qrt which this list shows 3 games going out the same qrt.

AmZD
AmZD

Gamespot, you damn fools, Q4 2011 IS December 1st 2011 - March 31st 2012, so it makes a lot of sense.

DrizztDoUrden16
DrizztDoUrden16

Blizzard needs to just tell consoles to go suck it like they always do, every PC or Mac(if there is such a thing) gamer plays Blizzard games and we dont need the pure console gaming tools. As for this being real idk... but if it were i dont think it would matter, everything will be released later than expected anyhow im sure.

ger14
ger14

i wonder whos gonna win the longest game in production medal. Duke Nukem forever, or Diablo 3? Gran Turismo 5 just lost it........thank you PD ;-) :D

Vengeancekael
Vengeancekael

@RavenXavier They obviously responded to the rumors, saying that they won't be pushing the release date of Diablo III just so that they can release the console versions with the PC version. And the console version isn't even confirmed.