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Will Blizzard's Titan MMO be attending Blizzcon? Bashiok says No.

Random Update: This is how my Titan @ Blizzcon RSS reader section looked like yesterday (29.09.2011). Seriously gaming sites, get it together.

Site Update: Added a FAQ page, check it out and tell me if there are any other questions / answers I should add. It will grow and change as we get more info.

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Well, I was planning on waiting a bit more until talking about how I think Titan and Blizzcon will mix, but the mainstream general gaming sites have done it again: they managed to create "news" and hype from absolutely nothing. Basically it all started from an analyst saying something along the lines of they might announce Titan at Blizzcon although all things point to the exact opposite... That's all it takes to get the news cycle going folks.

I had a long pro and con debate planned, with some predictions at the end, but meanwhile, probably forced by the silly articles that have appeared in the last few days, Bashiok, one of Blizzard's Community Managers, went out and cleared the air:

Some of you might have seen some recent speculation out there regarding the unannounced MMO and BlizzCon. There’s going to be a ton of information and content at the show -- including a closing concert by Foo Fighters, which we just revealed today -- but we want to be clear up front that we’re not going to be discussing the unannounced MMO. Source

So there you go everyone, straight from the horse's mouth. You can stop here, or you can read on and see what my article was like before this announcement. It does contain a few interesting little details in it, so it might be worth the effort.

Anyway, I'm not saying that Titan won't be announced at Blizzcon (although as you'll see, the chances are slim), just that a more detailed analysis is needed. One that I'll try to do in the following paragraphs.

First, let's see what facts (or clues) we have at our disposal.

Con Titan being announced at Blizzcon
  • Last year during Blizzcon 2010, Rob Pardo generously shared some info about how the work at Titan is going. Among other interesting details (that it was almost ready to enter preproduction and they had an internal build that was somewhat playable), he told us in no unclear terms that the chances of a Blizzcon 2011 announcement are small. This of course was a year ago so a lot of things may have changed since then, but the statement remains.
  • Following up on his find, Daeity from Digital Castration blog recently noticed that Cameron Dayton deleted all his Titan related tweets and also edited his LinkedIn job description to leave out some Titan info.

    Why on earth would he do that if Titan was to be announced just a month from now? It's a pretty clear sign that the lock on any Titan info is still tight and even getting tighter. Usually the exact opposite happens when an official announcement is close.
  • Probably the biggest clue we have is the lack of a trademark. How can you officially announce something which has no name? Has it ever been done in the gaming industry? I for one don't know any examples. They registered Mists of Pandaria trademark at the start of August, with the plan of announcing it at Blizzcon. Titan should get the exact same treatment if it is indeed scheduled for an October announcement. Nothing so far and the event is almost upon us.
  • Blizzard has no less than three HUGE games due to be launched in 2012. Even without Titan, Blizzcon will be stuffed to the max with things to unveil, announce, explain etc. Is this really the time to add one more?
Pro Titan being announced at Blizzcon
  • With D3 pushed back to 2012, SW:tOR is free to reign in the months until its release. Blizzard surely does not like this, so obviously they'll try to launch a "nuclear" at Blizzcon, to get people talking about that and not their rival's game. This is where that analyst concluded that Titan would be the perfect lure. While it is indeed true that it would easily steal the headlines, I don't know how efficient it is to try and cover a game that's launching in 2 months with one that has at least 2,3 years of development left.

    Especially when you have two awesome games that are a lot closer to release. Ample details on WoW's 4th expansion or D3 open beta announced for December would certainly manage to get everyone's attention, no?
  • As mentioned in a previous article, the window between official announcement and the rumoured release is already the shortest of all recent Blizzard games. Even if they moved the release to 2014, a project of such titanic proportions needs a decent hype / feedback period, so in theory at least, the announcement should be made this year.

As you can probably see, the Con arguments are A LOT more convincing and numerous than the Pro ones. This is why the chances of an official announcement at Blizzcon are extremely slim. But this doesn't mean we won't find out anything during those two event filled days.

Here's a short prediction list I've put together, with the chances of happening attached (0 = impossible, 100 = sure thing):
  • Titan officially announced at Blizzcon - 5
  • details about the stage of development in which Titan is - 70
  • a rough estimate of when Titan will be announced - 40
  • random quotes and statements with Titan clues in them - 80

Got more to add? Tell me in the comments and I'll edit the article!