Some of Blizzard's classics could be coming back, either in the capacity of being playable again on PC or mobile devices or maybe even home consoles. One thing is for sure, Blizzard is resurrecting classics such as Diablo 2, StarCraft and the game that helped spawn the new genre that dominates gaming at the moment: WarCraft 3.
A thread on NeoGaf points to a post on Blizzard's website where they're hiring senior software engineers to handle resurrecting some of Blizzard's classics, including Diablo 2, StarCraft and WarCraft 3.
The page for the job description states...
Compelling stories. Intense multiplayer. Endless replayability. Qualities that made StarCraft, Warcraft III, and Diablo II the titans of their day. Evolving operating systems, hardware, and online services have made them more difficult to be experienced by their loyal followers or reaching a new generation.
The responsibilities include making the gameplay run on modern systems. However, they don't specify if that means modern PC systems, modern Mac systems, modern mobile systems or modern gaming consoles? Potentially it could be all of the above given how integrated gaming has become these days.
Part of the job description is also about diagnosing and fixing some of the standard problems and issues that arise with porting over an old game to newer systems.
The job description also brings up something that might interest new-school gamers who aren't just paying attention for the nostalgia trip: multiplayer.
Apparently Blizzard sounds like they'll be bringing some of their classic titles into the new-school multiplayer arena, presumably with Battle.net support.
It would be pretty cool to see Diablo 2 make a return to form in today's generation of gaming. I do wonder how well a remastered version of the title would hold up compared to other isometric action-RPGs out there?
StarCraft houses far less mystery about it since StarCraft 2 is still making waves and bringing in a lot of attention from its eSports run and its continued support with highly anticipated expansion packs to further flesh out the game's very intricate story.
I also wonder how well WarCraft 3 will be accepted in today's environment? While the game originally gave birth to the MOBA genre through the mod Defense of the Ancients, which Valve later scooped up as Dota 2, I wonder if the classic will still hold a near and dear spot in the hearts of gamers or if it will fizzle out if it gets the re-release treatment again with improved functionality, stability and performance?
This also comes at a time when the Library of Congress recently gave historians and preservationist the go-ahead to crack open games with DRM for the purpose of historical preservation, as reported by the Electronic Frontier Foundation. This is a nice way for Blizzard to keep the games relevant, keep making money on them and avoid historians from making the old games available through circumvention methods.
We'll see what comes out of this but I doubt we'll be hearing anything about these developments anytime soon.