The Diablo team took to the stage yesterday at BlizzCon 2018 to answer fan questions, though none were centered on the controversy that the announcement of the mobile-only game has created since Friday. The team answered a variety of questions covering whether or not we'll see Mephisto in the game, if microtransactions will be present and how Blizzard plans "to stay relevant with a mobile game in a heavily PC-dominated market".
Q: Will we see a lot of microtransactions or will it be single pay?
A: Blizzard’s tradition is gameplay first regardless of if it’s boxed or F2P. We want to focus on making an excellent game first–system, items–and then when the game is farther along we can take a look at the game and figure out what the best business model is.
Q: How do you plan to stay relevant with a mobile game in a heavily PC-dominated market?
A: There’s multiple Diablo projects being worked on by multiple teams. We love Diablo, and for us we’re the most concerned with making excellent games. We look at other games, we’re super passionate about games, and we play all kinds of games. We look to others for ideas constantly, and these ideas influence how we make design decisions.
Kotaku spoke with Blizzard's Allen Adham about the controversy who seemed unsurprised by the growing backlash against the singular announcement of a Diablo-themed game. "We've seen this before. We saw a similar response when we announced that we were bringing Diablo to console, and we saw a similar response to the announcement of Hearthstone."
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Adham, though, feels like he and his team did the best they could. “At Blizzard, we don’t announce things until we’re ready. It’s all about game quality, less about timing, all about delivering an overwhelming experience to our players,” he said. “We tried to get ahead of that a little bit with the blog post to let that group know that we are working on multiple things and continue to work on multiple things. But it’s pretty clear that their incredible passion for Diablo manifests in interesting ways.”
Adham also reassured readers that there are multiple teams working on multiple projects, though he hesitated to confirm what platforms those projects may appear on. He ended the conversation by saying he hopes the community learns to love the game and learns more about the lore with the ability to "walk around with this in their pocket" and with having "the ability to play it anytime, anywhere".
Speaking with Polygon, Adham further explained the company's focus on this game for the mobile market: "The world is evolving both geographically and demographically,” he said. “Younger folks now, many of them, mobile is their primary gaming device. And then around the world in many regions it’s their primary gaming device, and so it’s always been our aspiration [to bring games to them]."