Blizzard announced today that they will not be hosting the annual BlizzCon event again this year. Instead they will have another BlizzConline with additional events early in 2022.
As with last year, uncertainty around the pandemic at the long lead time for planning such an event has been given as the reasons for not holding the huge, in person affair. I suspect the cost of such an event and the relative success of the online (and completely free) BlizzConline back in February also played into this decision.
Personally, I am fine with the online only event, especially since all the panels were just put up on YouTube to be viewed at your leisure, but I know that many, both fans and people at Blizzard, enjoy the big get together at the Anaheim Convention Center. Speaking before thousands of cheering fans… and being in that crowd… is not something that can be reproduced with an online experience.
The message from Blizzard:
Greetings Blizzard community,
I hope you’re all staying safe and well. As guidelines in California around in-person gatherings continue to evolve and the status of the pandemic fluctuates around the globe, the teams across Blizzard have been discussing what this means for one of the events we miss the most: BlizzCon. We know some of you might be wondering about your own plans to potentially cross the country—not to mention oceans—and meet your friends, family, and fellow community members in California, so today, we wanted to give you a heads-up that we’ve decided we will not be holding BlizzCon this year.
Building an in-person BlizzCon is an epic and complex affair that takes many months of preparation—not just for us, but also for the many talented production partners, esports pros, hosts, entertainers, artists, and other collaborators we team up with locally and globally to put all of the pieces together. The ongoing complexities and uncertainties of the pandemic have impacted our ability to properly move forward on many of these fronts, and ultimately we’re now past the point where we’d be able to develop the kind of event we’d want to create for you in November.
But we don’t want to let too long go by before we connect with everyone again. So in the meantime, we’re planning a global event for the early part of next year, combining an online show along the lines of our recent BlizzConline with smaller in-person gatherings, and we’ll share more as our plans come together.
We very much look forward to celebrating with you all again. Until then, we’ll see you in Azeroth, Outland, Sanctuary, and all the other worlds we call home.
–Saralyn Smith, Executive Producer of BlizzCon