The Facts: Is Project Titan a Spinoff or a Brand New Property?
February 1, 2013 in News
Some of the latest reports to come out about Project Titan is whether or not it is a spinoff of a current Blizzard property. The basis of this story has been around comments from the user Alphanoid on another community website. Some claims have included updates about the Battle.net service and some even outline Blizzard releasing their games on the Xbox console. The grandest of these claims are centered around, you guessed it, Project Titan.
Some sites have reported the comments from Alphanoid as fact. However, we think that it deserves a closer look before we can write it off as truth. The tricky thing about rumors are that they can be started with no consideration for the facts. So, rather than letting the blind lead the blind, we are going to walk through some of his claims here and make a judgement on whether or not we believe he can, or should, be trusted. We will only use information from credible sources and try and piece together his claims to discover how true they actually are.
What were the Project Titan comments?
The first assertion that Alphanoid makes is that Project Titan will not be a new property. He made several comments on the subject and one even details the contents of the Project Titan:
“Blizzard has been on record saying that Titan would be a new IP. Its not, its a spin off of an existing franchise … and they’re playing into that to allude to a new IP.” source
“Titan isn’t technically a new IP, it is.. but it isn’t. Its a spinoff of an existing Blizzard IP.” source
“My sources are hinting at some kind of World of Diablo-like … spin off. I have been told straight faced it is not a brand new IP and can be lead [sic] to be believed as one since its a spin off.” source
As you can see he clearly believes that Project Titan is not going to be anything fresh. He also mentions that it will be a simile of World of Warcraft only using Diablo’s world. This is contradictory to statements made by Zaryhm stating that:
“We’ve already stated it’ll be a brand new franchise, which means the lore, art, and game play are being developed entirely from scratch.”
This makes the statements made by Alphanoid significantly less credible. The fact that Zarhym explicitly says that they are developing it “entirely from scratch” leads us to believe that there is no spinoff scenario. Had he said something to the effect of “we are developing new lore, art and gameplay for Project Titan” it would be much more plausible to infer a spinoff. Even if Blizzard were to do a spinoff, it seems less likely that they would do a Diablo spinoff than a Starcraft one since Warcraft and Diablo have similar fantasy aspects. Regardless, let’s move on to Alphanoid’s other comments:
“… the team working on Titan at Blizzard, the successor, the next MMORPG after WoW is now working on writing framework for the next Xbox in addition to PC.” source
“… the Titan framework has had access to a near final ‘next Xbox’ dev kit since November.” source
These two statements seem to assert that Blizzard has the intention to add their games to the thriving Xbox community. I think we can all agree that it is possible that Blizzard would want to expand their user base to the console using market. This even lines up with their marketing plan to “reach a broader audience“. However, in a CVG interview with Greg Street (aka Ghostcrawler), Greg was asked his feelings on the possibility of a console MMO and had the following to say:
“I think the control scheme is a part of it, the traditional MMO has always had a lot of typing and is dependent on the mouse and keyboard paradigm.”
“It’s a real design challenge because you have to throw out a lot of what you’ve learned on a PC.”
“If you’re playing on a couch from a distance with a controller, it requires very different design… I’m sure someone will solve that problem.”
These statements were made in late 2010. That means that he was not confident that a console version of an MMO would be feasible less than a year before the supposed completion of an Xbox MMO framework that Alphanoid asserts. It seems that, unless major changes are made to the nature of the current generation of consoles, Blizzard will not risk the possibility of a failing console Project Titan just to reach another market segment.
So can we trust the comments made by Alphanoid?
In our opinion, and based on the credible evidence from this post, we do not believe Alphanoid’s comments to be of any merit. Between the contradictions in his statements and the statements of Blizzard officials, and the false assertions of a completed Xbox framework, we feel that his statements do not hold water. He may have an insider from Blizzard who passes him information, but the information is false and does not reflect the opinions of public Blizzard spokespeople.