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Another former Blizzard employee talks, gives hints on when Titan will be announced

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#1
mynsc

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Got to love former employees. Same as last time, another ex-Blizzard team member (although it's worth taking note that verification in this case is virtually non-existant) started a thread in which he responds to questions from other posters. This time not on reddit, but on GameFAQs.com

He already gave some very interesting answers and the thread is still active. Here's what we have so far:

Q: If you've been able to see it, how's the next-gen MMO 'Titan' coming along?

A: Titan is looking very nice. If you have been around Blizzard games for a while you are going to be in for something as it is almost a complete departure from you would be used to. But in a good way, IE Burtons Batman to Nolans Batman.


Q: Does Titan have guns?

A: Yes.....and no. Haha, it will make sense. But yes.


Q: Will we see game-play or atleast a trailer for Titan by the end of the year?

A: No, not unless something big, read: bad, happens and they need to quickly try to divert attention. Otherwise it will be early next year after MoP dies down.


I'll update this article with any other answers he will give.

Again, please take note that there is no verification in place on those forums and the thread creator did not provide any proof to support his identity, so we shouldn't jump to any conclusions.

Last but not least, big thanks to Odysseus for originally pointing me towards this thread.

Click here to view the record

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#2
Sarnakyle

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It would make sense. Several of us have predicted that it would release early next year. I'm trying to stay level head, because no, we don't know if this guy is legit, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't get a burst of energy when I read that XD

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#3
mynsc

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@Sarnakyle

I hear ya. That second answer absolutely SCREAMS time travel. So he's either legit or a regular visitor of this site or Daeity's, as this theory has never entered the mainstream.

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#4
DevilsD

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Its looking more and more probable that we see some actual official information at Blizzcon 2013.

I was surprised when he gave the contrast between Nolan and Burton as a reference as to what to expect. Im surprised in a very good way and asks more questions than it answers lol.

Blizzcon 2013 here we come.

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#5
Falloubst

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Very good find. :) I'm also hoping that Titan is going to be revealed at BlizzCon 2013, assuming that there will be a BlizzCon in 2013. :D

If the information above is legit, I'm very happy.

#6
papaz

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Wow, that's a nice find!

I remember the guy at reddit doing a similar thing saying we wouldn't hear from Titan for a long time.

Here is hoping this employee is right and the other one wrong!

Also I really like his answer to "will there be guns". If that doesn't scream time travel I don't know what does :)

@mynsc
Good question about the product slate leak! If he also confirms it like the other employee at reddit did I think a 2013 revealing looks more and more probable!

#7
Sarnakyle

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Looks like we scared him off... back to the drought :/

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#8
rs10rs10

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Looks like we scared him off... back to the drought :/

Indeed, no activity for some days now

"Rogues guard the secrets to poison-making carefully, lest magi start incorporating poison into their spells. Poisonbolt? Rain of Poison? Poison Elemental? Nobody wants that."


#9
DevilsD

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I doubt Blizzard would dare to deprive us of 2 Blizzcons in a Row, we know that Blizzcon 2012 isnt happening so theres a huge probability that Blizzcon 2013 is the time for new info.

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#10
Starkei

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Mike Morehaime said in an interview recently that Blizzcon 2013 is on. 2012 had a lot of releases to focus on and would have taken resources away from getting them released.
I guess this means that 2013 will be a year of announcements (WoW 6.0 and maybe Titan?) and probably only SCII - Heart of the Swarm as a release.

#11
Sarnakyle

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I've been thinking there is an underlying reason for no Blizzcon 2012: to build hype for 2013. Blizzcon 2011 was the first ever Blizzcon to have a decrease in attending guests over the previous year. And with Diablo 3 out with no Xpacs on the horizon, MoP will be out by then, HotS in December, and Titan not yet ready for a debut, there wouldn't be a lot to attract more guests, possibly resulting in another decrease in attendees. So cancel Blizzcon 2012, which didn't have much to present anyway, and it will build anticipation for the next one. Why? Because you don't want something until it is taken from you. I'm willing to bet that once Blizzcon 2013 tickets go on sale, they are gonna sell like hotcakes, regardless if any Titan info has been released at that point. So it maybe a bit conspiracy theory-y, but this has been planned for a while. 

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#12
papaz

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One thing that defineteley will be announced at blizzcon is the next WoW xpac which will be released november 2014... 10th anniversary of WoW.

So having a Titan release in 2015, the year after WoW 10th anniversary xpac might be a good move.

thats what I hope for at least :)

#13
rs10rs10

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One thing that defineteley will be announced at blizzcon is the next WoW xpac which will be released november 2014... 10th anniversary of WoW.

So having a Titan release in 2015, the year after WoW 10th anniversary xpac might be a good move.

thats what I hope for at least :)

But there is so long untill 2015 :(

"Rogues guard the secrets to poison-making carefully, lest magi start incorporating poison into their spells. Poisonbolt? Rain of Poison? Poison Elemental? Nobody wants that."


#14
papaz

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But there is so long untill 2015 :(


Long?! I'm being optimistic here :)

SC2 took 3 years to release after announcement.

D3 took 4 years to release after announcement.

Now I have considered the "hints" we got from Blizzard (I believe it was Rob Pardo at some Blizzcon) that they don't want to do the D3 mistake again, that is having a long time before reveal and release.

But even taking that into account, a brand new IP and their most ambitious project yet I can't see the time being any shorter than at least 2 years from reveal to release.

So if they reveal it 2013, earliest 2015. :)

1. WoW 10th anniversary xpac with epic boss Sargeras announced in 2013. Also Titan announced.

2. WoW 10th anniversary xpac released november 2014.

3. Sargeras patch released in spring 2015.

People start to clear the final boss in WoW, starting to get bored of the content. This is usually when subs in WoW starts declining...

BAM look no further all bored players:
4. Christmas holidays 2015 Titan released.

It seems like a good transition for WoW players. They must have considered their MMO playerbase for the release of Titan why I am putting WoW in the timeline.

Even if both games can co-exist at some point, at the time of release "all MMO players" will be trying/playing Titan before either sticking with it or going back to whatever MMO they are coming from.

#15
rs10rs10

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@papaz I know, heard the arguments before :p And Sadly, I think you're right.

"Rogues guard the secrets to poison-making carefully, lest magi start incorporating poison into their spells. Poisonbolt? Rain of Poison? Poison Elemental? Nobody wants that."


#16
Dendarang

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I saw this topic awhile ago but didn't post because, well, I honestly have nothing to contribute here that hasn't been said already.

Yes, it was great that we had another leak and yes, it sucks that that leak dried out. I'm actually quite impressed with Blizzard's employees. Titan has been in development for five years now and there have been only two leaks so far, and neither of them wanted to dislodge any further info then what we already heard. This time we got teaser of similiar kind as that "... all of those combined." comment. But still, you would expect that there would be at least one disgruntled former employee that would be willing to share just a bit more info.

The actual reason why I'm writing this comment is mostly just to express my opinion, primarily in response to papaz.

I actually do think that Titan will be released in 2013 or first half of 2014 and there are two reasons that lead me to believe that.

First is that, looking at just the development time of StarCraft 2 and Diablo 3, which would be six and seven years, respectively, it might be easy to conclude that Titan will take more than that due to simple fact that Titan is an MMO which means that it requires more content from the get-go than RTS and ARPG. However, both of those games had extenuating circumstances.

Developing StarCraft 2 wasn't merely about developing models, textures, code, art, etc. that the game would use, I am convinced that the greatest hurdle in developing SC2 was its e-sports aspect, which is crucial to the continuing success of the game. Making a completely new e-sports isn't easy, making a sequal to an e-sports that had popularity of SC:BW is that much harder. I think that SC could be considered a breakthrough e-sport because, and correct me if I'm wrong, SC was the first e-sport where the scene "graduated" from average competetive gamer scene to something that is actually akin to real sport. Making sure that everything that made SC popular remains part of the experience while upgrading, changing and evolving ideas for new game as well as making sure that the old pros remain interested in the game while the new game attracts plenty of people that normally wouldn't be interested or who weren't interested is as every bit of monumental and difficult as it sounds.

As for Diablo 3, well, some of the issues it had in its (too) long of development cycle were shared with SC2. One of the bigger issues was certainly that they had to stay true to the core of the series while modernising the, in internet years, ancient ARPG, keeping new fans interested and interesting new fans in the game. Have they achieved that, it really depends on who you talk with. I've heard all versions, from claims that they abandoned and betrayed their old fans to people saying that they stayed too true to the source material and that D3 is too similiar to D2. And that leads us to the second problem that D3 had that extended its development time way more than it should have been, which is nostalgia. Viewing the past through rose-tinted glasses is more of a innate ability of humans than anything else but, in my opinion, in a highly emotional issue like beloved hobby of many a gamer, it especially comes to light. I stand by my opinion that emotions influenced many opinions about various topics during D3's lenghty development. And finally it was the poor time menagement that artificially extended D3's development. While I do think that devs are quite talented and that made a really good game, their time-menagement left much to be desired. Team was constantly indecisive and unsure of their own decisions which led to too many iterations. Ultimately, they produced a quality product but it was a long and rocky road to it.

Aside from artificially extending of development process of SC2 and D3 second reason is the oft-quoted statement made by, Rob Pardo, I think, I'm unsure, that they want to reduce time between announcement and release. And I believe them, because it makes sense. One of the things that majority of gamers hold against Diablo devs is how early in it's development they announced D3. I don't think they had much more than they showed on WWI 2008, and that lead to long and akward development. This has already been betean to death, but the important part is that it is much more beneficial for them to show a nearly completed product late in its development, even if that meant holding public in the dark longer, than showing said product too early.

So, having said all that, according to what we know, Titan's development begain in 2007. That would be six years of development in 2013 and seven years in 2014. Now, from another post made by Blizzard representative we know that they have assembled something of a "dream team" from veteran MMO devs that began working on the game during WoW's TBC era. Knowing that they don't have to make the game an e-sports, make a sequal to highly successive e-sport or deal with nostalgia and assuming that they have don't repeat some of the mistakes that Diablo devs made, I think that those years should be enough to make a high quality MMO for 2013 or 2014.


This has nothing to do with the topic but, I am using laptop with small keyboard I am not used to and I am pretty sure that I have somehow menaged to hit every single shortcut key but none more than ctrl-w which with which I closed the window whopping four times. I wanted to slam my head against the desk the fourth time it happened.

#17
DevilsD

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Blizzard has the experience to do it right and to do it within a reasonable amount of time, considering the scale thats being hinted at.

Dendarang is right, its more realistic than what people are giving credit for to see this game come out in a 2013-14 timeframe.

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#18
papaz

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I actually do think that Titan will be released in 2013 or first half of 2014 and there are two reasons that lead me to believe that.


Now that would be huge surprise if this was the case. A huge and awesome surprise :) !

But wasn't it the project and not the development that started 2007? I'm thinking the actual development started somewhere in 2011 since Rob or whoever it was in Blizzcon saying "we have moved into full production".

And 2013 or even 2014 seems so early marketing/preparation wise for an AAA title even if the development is almost complete. There isn't a single word on the project yet and I figure they want to hype it for at least for 2 Blizzcons before beta starts. The first Blizzcon: "Here is Titan and some class/character demos". The second Blizzcon "here are the other classes, PvP or whatever".

And then beta starts running for a couple of months before release date. Just the beta + release timeframe feels like a 5-6 month time period.

I wish they would have a WWI event for Titan before Blizzcon 2013!

#19
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http://titanfocus.in...at-blizzcon-r30
^
This is the link to the page of Rob Pardo stating that the game was still in preproduction as of 2011 and they were looking to move into full production soon.

@Dengarang
I agree with you in the fact that SC2 and D3 had circumstances that pushed back production, but Titan will as well. It's not just the fact that it is an MMO that will create a longer development period, but rather taking the collective knowledge that they have and sorting it out to truly create a long lasting, genre changing title. I bet that there is a huge amount of pressure internally to get this game right, and I'd bet my bottom dallor that there are many heated meetings with all that talent saying how it should be done.

And 2013 or even 2014 seems so early marketing/preparation wise for an AAA title even if the development is almost complete. There isn't a single word on the project yet and I figure they want to hype it for at least for 2 Blizzcons before beta starts. The first Blizzcon: "Here is Titan and some class/character demos". The second Blizzcon "here are the other classes, PvP or whatever".


You took the words out of my mouth :)

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#20
Dendarang

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But wasn't it the project and not the development that started 2007? I'm thinking the actual development started somewhere in 2011 since Rob or whoever it was in Blizzcon saying "we have moved into full production".

And 2013 or even 2014 seems so early marketing/preparation wise for an AAA title even if the development is almost complete. There isn't a single word on the project yet and I figure they want to hype it for at least for 2 Blizzcons before beta starts. The first Blizzcon: "Here is Titan and some class/character demos". The second Blizzcon "here are the other classes, PvP or whatever".


Actually, the Titan's development staretd in 2007. Game's development is spread into three phases, pre-production, production and post-production. I apologise if you already know this but this is more-or-less how it's done. Pre-production is mainly the planning part of the game as well as building foundation that the game will be built upon. Writers have to create outline of the story, project gets code name, and artists in particular and important. Artists collaborating with game designers, who are also doing their thing i.e. designing core game mechanics conceptualise the world, perspective, enviroments and really everything else in the game's visual identity. Artists tend to churn out a ton of artwork for all purposes. Also, tech guys have to either optimise or create game engine for the purposes of the game. It may seem a trivial phase but it's actually the most important phase. Subsequent ones are only actually building the game and optimising it, but the game is created with all the potential strenghts and flaws in this stage. So, I'm guessing it was really beneficial to the game that Titan never really had strict deadline to adhere to. Like I said, core game mechanics, look and feel of tha game and game engine are some of the decisions of this stage. Anyway, after that (potentially pointless) lesson, let's continue. My understanding is that the game entered pre-production in 2007 and probably spent several years conceptualising and visualising the game as well as figuring out that "hook" of the game that was talked about in Blizzcon 2011. However, I find it highly unlikely that they spent four years doing just that, even if it is most important phase. My guess would be that they started at the actual production while they were finalising pre-production and that the remark about entering "full production" meant that they started focusing all of their efforts on creating the game world and its inhabitants from the material they made in pre-production. But, damn you, now you've got me worried. Opinions aren't etched in stone so it might be likely that they really only started production stage in 2011. Considering that post-production is typically the longest stage, that has me worried about the potential of game's release in 2013 or 2014.

As far as Titan's extenuating circumstances go, they really aren't nowhere near as bad as StarCraft 2's or Diablo 3's. Titan's worst problem is simply the monumental amount of work that artists, writers and other will have to go through to create a massive world filled with strange and/or beatiful sights, which is more-or-less what I expect from Titan's world. Or worlds, if time travel turns out to be true, which it seems like it might. So, they would maybe be half a tier? Worse than average AAA titles has but better than SC2's D3's circumstances.

As for your last point, that seems quite arbitery, don't you think? There's really no reason for them to show Titan at two Blizzcons, in particular if they announce it late in development and release it relatively quickly, which, as far as we know anyway, is their plan. As for hype, Titan already has quite a bit of hype, probably more so than some games that are already announced and Blizzard keeping everyone in dark seems to work amazingly for them, certainly better than D3's approach did. Of course, the hype train is still relatively small especially compared to hype average Blizzard game gets, but I think it's good enough for them for now. They don't what happened to D3 to happen again, people getting over-hyped, each person imagining their image of perfection and then, inevitably, disappointment for some. Though, about the Blizzcons, depanding on Titan's announcement and release as well as schedule for Blizzcon 2013 and Blizzcon 2014 they might actually show it at two Blizzcons.

And finally, one thing that came to mind, that leaked Blizzard product placement. We can assume it's true since the Chinese branch menager that leaked it was fired/quit but the real question is, do they still stick to it and if yes, to what degree. Developing a game isn't a process that can be pushed or gerenally moved to accomodate outside influences so I think we can assume that it's still true. It says on the slate that Diablo 3 was supposed to be released in 4q 2011 and we did learn that it was indeed when they were planning to release the game. Diablo 3, of course, got pushed to 2q 2012 but that still gives credibility to the slate. On it, Titan is showed to be scheduled for release in 4q 2013, in a somewhat similiar fashion to Diablo 3, so we can assume that would be the loose deadline that Titan team has to abide to. So, it will be interesting to see how much will Titan be late and how much was it's development different than the projected time slate. I'm guessing this was already discussed, so I apologise up front, but it caught my curiousity and interest, so I wrote about it. If they only started production in 2011, they will probably be quite behind, so maybe late 2014? If they started earlier maybe they will even be on (Blizzard) time, which would still mean quarter or so late.