Do you want Blizzard to make Warcraft 4?
Yesterday we talked about the possibility of a remastered Warcraft 3, and that got me thinking — is Warcraft 4 going to happen? Do you even want it to happen? I remember folks were intensely excited for StarCraft 2 but while the game is very much still being developed and iterated on, I think in general its performance showed that RTS games seem to be in a bit of a slump right now.
Still, it’s hard to think that Warcraft 4 might not be the game to counteract that. The Warcraft series essentially redefined real time strategy as a game concept — sure, other games out there like Westwood’s Command and Conquer certainly played a role in the RTS genre, but nobody can deny the raw power of the Warcraft franchise. If any company can bring RTS back, surely it’s Blizzard?
But then I think that Blizzard took a shot at just that with StarCraft 2 and found out that its biggest competitor was itself — the way people reacted to StarCraft Remastered certainly implied that the reason SC2 wasn’t universally beloved was because it wasn’t just more StarCraft, but a new game with different storytelling and mechanics. Would people embrace a Warcraft 4 or would they angrily compare it to WC3 and hold every change as a failing?
Furthermore, with World of Warcraft still rolling strong after fourteen years, does the franchise even have anywhere to go in terms of a story? The Burning Legion just got dealt with and the next expansion is all about Alliance/Horde conflict — what does Warcraft 4 even get to be about? Can it possibly sustain a narrative without stepping on the MMO, or vice versa? I see people talking about Warcraft 4 as a prequel, dealing with the War of the Ancients or perhaps alternate Draenor, and I always find myself wondering if anyone would want to play a game that has no narrative consequences as far as the Warcraft setting as a whole is concerned.
Then again, who knows? Maybe they could do it, and do it in a way that dovetails with Battle for Azeroth or its successor expansion. What do you think? Is there a place and a time for Warcraft 4 and is that place and time now?
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