BlizzCon 2020 has become one of the latest public events to get canceled due to the impact of COVID-19. The annual gaming event is usually held in Anaheim, California. It joins a long list of cancellations that continues to grow as many industries try to adjust to the ongoing complications brought on in the wake of the global pandemic. Yesterday, the executive producer of BlizzCon, Saralyn Smith (aka Whirlwind Barbarian) posted this on their website.
Hello, Blizzard community,
Several weeks ago, I shared an update about our uncertainty around holding BlizzCon this year. Since then, a lot has changed . . . and a lot also hasn’t changed. During this time, we’ve had many discussions about what holding a convention could look like in light of all the health and safety considerations we’d want to make. We’ve also talked about different paths we could take, and how each one could be complicated by fluctuations in national and local health guidelines in the months ahead. Ultimately, after considering our options, we’ve come to the very difficult decision to not have BlizzCon this year.
As disheartening as this news is, she does go on to explain that they are working on other alternatives to “channel the BlizzCon spirit.” At this point, they are hoping to have something in place by early next year. For the time being, mass gatherings for large esports events and huge LAN-style parties are a thing of the past, but many are working toward solutions to bring them back. Just recently, Command & Conquer producer Jim Vessella spoke about the impact the coronavirus had on their upcoming remaster release. He explained that delays, safety concerns, and restrictions prevented his team from being able to complete implementation of LAN support at launch. Saralyn closed her statement with sentiments that many probably share.
We’ll tell you more about our plans as they develop—but in the meantime, we hope to see you exploring the Shadowlands, hanging out in the Tavern, pushing the payload (do it!), and wherever else in the Blizzard universes you may roam.