Blizzard timeline celebrates 20 years of history

As part of its 20th anniversary celebrations, Blizzard has whipped up a timeline documenting the history of the company and its games. From platformer Blackthorne to cpmic book fighting game Justice League Task Force, it's all there.

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As part of its 20th anniversary celebrations, Blizzard has whipped up a timeline documenting the history of the company and its games. From platformer Blackthorne to comic book fighting game Justice League Task Force, it's all there. Oh, and that StarCraft, Diablo, and Warcraft jazz and whatnot.

The timeline is a fine stroll down memory lane, though a little light on details. And if you've ever been uncertain about how exactly Blizzard became part of Activision, the many steps are laid out.

It is a little too clean, though, with nary a mention of cancelled projects like sneaky shooter StarCraft Ghost and comic adventure game WarCraft Adventures: Lord of the Clans. While we can surely trust Blizzard's decisions to kill them, it'd be nice to see something of these projects which did once excite fans so.

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  • reply
    July 5, 2012 2:00 PM

    Alice O'Connor posted a new article, Blizzard timeline celebrates 20 years of history.

    As part of its 20th anniversary celebrations, Blizzard has whipped up a timeline documenting the history of the company and its games. From platformer Blackthorne to cpmic book fighting game Justice League Task Force, it's all there.

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      July 5, 2012 2:05 PM

      I fucking love Rock N Roll Racing. That game is the tits.

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      July 5, 2012 2:19 PM

      Oh shit. I remember that first Blizzard web site! Damn. Also, fuck yeah Lost Vikings, love those kind of games so it's a shame they're so rare.

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      July 5, 2012 3:21 PM

      When I think back on all the great games Blizzard put out up to The Frozen Throne, and then what they put out now; I just get really depressed.

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        July 5, 2012 3:30 PM

        Whatever you say Blizzard hipster.

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        July 5, 2012 3:38 PM

        StarCraft II would like a word with you.

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          July 5, 2012 3:39 PM

          SC2 was definitely a lot better than WC3, which had tons of gameplay and balance issues. One unit could solo armies. Lame.

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            July 5, 2012 4:08 PM

            Umm.. no.

            Look at how long Warcraft 3 has lasted. Even now, there are many websites which bring out new maps; Tower Defence, RPG, Aos, Puzzle, etc etc. Thousands of people download new maps all the time for Warcraft 3.

            Look at Starcraft 2; it's already losing it's popularity due to League of Legends.

            http://www.forbes.com/sites/johngaudiosi/2012/06/03/team-solomid-believes-league-of-legends-will-soon-replace-starcraft-ii-in-esports-hierarchy/2/

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              July 5, 2012 5:10 PM

              LoL team believes pro LoL will be huge, news at 10

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              July 5, 2012 5:14 PM

              I don't agree that the existence of custom maps with radically different (and superior) gameplay like Dota means that WC3 was an excellent game in its own right, but I guess that's one way to think about it.

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                July 5, 2012 5:29 PM

                It certainly contributed to WC3's longevity. Its something they're really trying to address with SC2 1.5 with a better front end for custom games.

                SC2 itself is great, but BNet 2.0 and the custom game system is really bad so far.

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                  July 5, 2012 5:31 PM

                  Have they demo'd any of the HotS/Blizzard All-Stars improvements yet? Their timetable seems ridiculous on this stuff.

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                    July 5, 2012 5:41 PM

                    There is a 1.5 beta up right now. HoTS was playable at MLG last month and at Blizzcon. BAS was at Blizzcon. I played those at both events. HoTS beta should be starting in the next few months. Who knows when BAS will be starting, they have a LOT of work to do.

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              July 6, 2012 1:51 AM

              Really, from what I understand, Starcraft II is still gaining in popularity.

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              July 6, 2012 2:05 AM

              The main reason there is such continuing support for WC3 is it's ease of piracy and decent (for the time) modding tools. If SC2 was piratable and a couple killer app maps came out for it, it would have much bigger numbers.

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        July 5, 2012 4:00 PM

        Can you define what is different or is it just an emotional reason?

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          July 5, 2012 8:26 PM

          Yes to both.

          Story sucks monkey balls now (in all their recent games), especially the dialogue. It feels cliche and not very interesting. I will admit that gameplay is excellent, but I look for more than that in a game. If you're a multiplayer only/don't care about story kinda gamer, than you're probably just fine with modern Blizzard.

          As far as emotional goes, I feel that ever since the family split (read departure of Blizzard North) that something is missing from their games, something that helped define the feel of Blizzard games.

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        July 5, 2012 4:13 PM

        Cataclysm was okay, I enjoyed Firelands. Starcraft 2 was very sterile but still a lot of fun. Diablo 3 is dry but the class variety means I've still got plenty of fun to get out of it.

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          July 5, 2012 5:35 PM

          I got dragged kicking and screaming through Firelands for long enough to get three guildies that fucking staff. All I can say is FUCK firelands. I'm never going back. :(

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            July 5, 2012 10:00 PM

            [deleted]

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              July 5, 2012 10:05 PM

              I just spent about 100 times more time in there than I ever wanted to. Tanking, healing, and DPSing across six guys. Never did get my fucking staff done though. :(

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              July 6, 2012 1:57 AM

              Everyone is down on dragon soul. I kinda wanna resub and just PUG it on ezmode though.

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            July 6, 2012 1:56 AM

            Ha, my guild never finished a staff. I still want the drood one for fire kitteh.

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          July 5, 2012 8:46 PM

          Cataclysm definitely managed to have the least interesting, most monotonous, most disjointed leveling experience. They acknowledged that eventually, but as I don't care even a little bit for MoP, I won't get the chance to see if they fix it.

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            July 5, 2012 10:02 PM

            [deleted]

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              July 6, 2012 5:22 AM

              Even without any leveling stuff you'd finish the zones halfway through and could skip two or three of them entirely.

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                July 6, 2012 7:12 AM

                sounds like it was packed with content to me. Though I only played to 83 and got to the desert place and nearly threw my computer through the window. I HATE desert areas in games. SO MUCH. I opted instead just to quit WoW forever, I was so so so burnt out anyway.

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                  July 6, 2012 7:13 AM

                  the exception to the rule being Serious Sam. That game 0wns.

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                  July 6, 2012 7:18 AM

                  The questing was all extremely linear and super easy. SUPER easy. The only way it was even possible to die was if you were alt-tabbed or something. They were trying to tell some kind of story, and admittedly there were a few cool quest events across the expansion, but the fact that it was so easy that it barely qualified as a game really turned me off. It was like getting a prize just for showing up.

                  • Zek legacy 10 years
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                    July 6, 2012 7:32 AM

                    Leveling has always been easy in WoW from the very start. The leveling content in Cataclysm was excellent compared to what they had before.

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                      July 6, 2012 7:43 AM

                      Thinking back, some of the vanilla content wasn't really a cakewalk. Do you remember the first time you went through Duskwood? Some of those zones were very fun because they did present a real danger of getting eaten alive by a wolf or spider out of nowhere 5 levels above you.

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                        July 6, 2012 7:54 AM

                        Oh, it was pretty rough all over the place. There were tons of elites, huge camps of monsters, patrols, etc. And back in those days, you really didn't have the offensive or defensive power that you have now; you could easily swing at a regular monster for 30 seconds before killing it, and not have any multi-target damage to speak of.

                        Granted, the combat was very slow and didn't involve pressing many buttons, but if I had to choose between that and having tons of situational buttons that I never have to use outside of an instance, I'll take the slower pace and a sense of danger. A video game over an interactive movie, in other words.

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                          July 6, 2012 8:04 AM

                          Exactly. I miss the days of actually having to watch where you were going. Added to the immersion and made things interesting. I remember trying to find clever ways of pulling one or two and/or moving around a group of enemies without aggro'ing every last one of them on top of me. Actually having to formulate a plan of attack vs spamming one button for 5 seconds while yawning in the later expacs.

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                            July 6, 2012 10:20 AM

                            I don't think it added to the immersion so much as it *made it a video game*.

                            It was definitely fun though. I don't know what they're thinking these days. Blizzard is trying to be the Disneyland of video games or something.

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                      July 6, 2012 7:44 AM

                      It was easy in the sense that you'd never get hung up and unable to move forward anywhere, but it was much harder than Cata. Parts of BC and definitely WoW 1.0 were challenging. It got significantly easier in Wrath, and easier still in Cata. I really think the only way you could actively die while paying attention was if you accidentally aggro'ed some kind of quest mob. It's weird, because these days every class has a giant arsenal of "oh shit" buttons and power burst buttons that you never ever have to use while questing because nothing does any damage and everything flops over dead in five seconds or less.

                      My impression is that they're trying to make their story feel "epic", but if they're shooting for some kind of theme park ride then the single player action games are always going to have them beat.

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                  July 6, 2012 10:25 AM

                  [deleted]

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                    July 6, 2012 1:45 PM

                    NOW you tell me :p j/k I was pretty burned out so that was 95% of it. I figured at the time there must be another way.

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        July 5, 2012 5:08 PM

        SC2 is great

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      July 5, 2012 6:06 PM

      warcraft 2, first game i ever became addicted too. I even lugged my computer to the lake when the family went just to keep playing.

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      July 5, 2012 8:38 PM

      can't forget Blackthorne -- nothing like firing a shotgun behind you like just don't care

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        July 6, 2012 1:45 AM

        yeah that was such a sweet move. I'm surprised it's never been used again. I guess the lack of platformers contributes to that.

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      July 6, 2012 12:38 AM

      Holy shit they've had a lot of "fastest selling PC game of all time"! Personally, I wouldn't have counted expansions as "games" but it's still extremely impressive for one company to achieve all that!

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        July 6, 2012 1:58 AM

        It's pretty amazing. I want new ip from them now though, prove they've still got chops to invent from scratch.

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          July 6, 2012 2:40 AM

          give a few programmers a million bucks each to make anything they want.

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            July 6, 2012 3:34 AM

            I'm surprised with their moneyhats they don't have a few skunkworks projects on he go. Maybe they do but we haven't/wont see them.

            • Zek legacy 10 years
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              July 6, 2012 7:33 AM

              I think they value their reputation too highly to do that. Everything has to be a AAA mega-hit.

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