Diablo III has its good and bad sides, but it definitely doesn’t enjoy the same popularity as its predecessor, Diablo II, which was released by Blizzard Entertainment back in 2000 for Microsoft Windows and Mac OS. Diablo II had a unique mysterious vibe, outstanding music and a frightening story that earned it the “Computer Game of the Year”, “Computer Role Playing Game of the Year”, and “Game of the Year” awards from the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences in 2001. Now, so many years after it was released officially, a YouTube user named “egodbout2” has unveiled a fantastic project that aims to recreate this wonderful RPG in StarCraft II.
That’s right, Diablo II will be released as a free game mod for StarCraft II, and it will be named The Curse of Tristram. The project will actually consist of a series of custom maps that will be published through Battle.net Arcade this summer, and since both Diablo II and Starcraft II are Blizzard titles, it’s probably safe to assume that Blizzard won’t issue a C&D letter for the developers. I can’t wait for this project to be released so I can replay one of my all-time favorite classic RPGs. Below you will find a short trailer for The Curst of Tristram, which looks quite impressive so far.
The rise of eSports has been nothing short of revolutionary and transformed talented gamers into household celebrities. Not only that, players in popular games like League of Legends compete in events with huge prize pools watched by millions around the globe. These individuals are under intense pressure and hone their craft for long periods each day. I’ve always been fascinated to see the impact of competitive gaming events on viewer purchasing habits. According to the latest research from NPD, the eSports industry has encouraged large audiences to spend money on game purchases. More specifically, the report suggests nearly 70 percent of people watching have purchased the game in question or some form of DLC.
On another note, the study found that 44 percent of US gamers watched a formal eSports event or enjoyed competitive streaming in the past six months. Furthermore, the average viewing time is pretty substantial at just under three hours. 18 percent of those surveyed watch eSport content on a daily basis while 46 percent watched contests once a week. When it comes to elite play, viewers appear to be more interested in the game and not the level of prize money on offer:
“It’s the game being played that consistently attracts viewers. Watchers are most influenced by the game, followed by the quality of the commentators and the team/players,”
Liam Callahan, industry analyst, The NPD Group explained the results and said:
“eSports may have seemed like a niche phenomenon in the past, but it has clearly taken off with strong activity and engagement with consumers,”
“This is positive for the gaming industry on multiple levels, not only bringing excitement from the events themselves, but also from a marketing standpoint as consumers learn and can then potentially spend on games featured at eSports events.”
Two-thirds of those watching already own the game which isn’t surprising because they simply want to see the best players in the world and improve their strategy.
These days, it’s often possible for pre-orders to start for a game before the developer has even announced the launch date. StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void is no exception with pre-orders opening up 2 months ago but no launch date yet. That has been rectified today with Blizzard announcing that the third and final installment of StarCraft II will launch on November 10th 2015.
Along with the announcement, Blizzard released yet another one of their glorious cinematics. In it, the Protoss struggle to hold their ground as they warp in reinforcements to reclaim their homeworld. Like the title suggests, the last expansion in the series will focus on the Protoss and their legacy as well as wrapping up the story for the rest of the characters like Jim Raynor and Sarah Kerrigan.
Interestingly, the date Blizzard has chosen, November 10th, is already claimed by two other major titles, Rise of the Tomb Raider and Fallout 4. This means for more budget gamers, they will have to choose which game to first spend their hard earned cash on and which one to play first. While Blizzard can gamble that RTS players and fans of the other games aren’t the same, there will invariably be overlap. For now, be sure to check out the opening cinematic below.
The latest StarCraft title, Legacy of the Void, is said to be the closing story for the StarCraft 2 series. It was first announced at BlizzCon last year, but Blizzard did not mention when it will be released.
While Blizzard is known for taking its time with their titles, The Daily Dot gives some hope that the release date is close than expected. Their sources say that the closed beta for Legacy of the Void should be launched at the end of March or early April, pointing out that gaming press and esports organisations have been told to submit their requests for beta keys.
“It’s great timing for them. WCS Season 1 will be all but over and this will give players plenty of time to stream the beta and generate some excitement. As things stand the beta is pretty much ready to launch with the balance team just tweaking a few units.”
Blizzard stated that StarCraft 2: Legacy of the Void will not be an expansion, but a standalone game. It is said to focus on the Protoss side of the story and should ultimately end the StarCraft 2 story as a whole.
Thank you Ubergizmo for providing us with this information