Diablo 2 producer Mark Kern took to Twitter to bluntly state that Blizzard’s announcement of Diablo Immortal is an example of the company “not understanding gamers anymore.”

Over the weekend the former producer of Diablo 2 and Team Leader of Vanilla World of Warcraft took to Twitter to make a few things clear about the BlizzCon Announcement of Diablo: Immortal. First, he defended gamers, as many were attacked by certain people for their dissatisfaction with the mobile game announcement.

He goes on to point out that Blizzard doesn’t understand their own playerbase and gamers anymore.

It’s unfortunate that certain forces decided to pull the “smugly” gamer card on players, but Mark hit the nail on the head as he explains why players were upset about the announcement:

Anyone who has been following the fandom for at least the last few months would know there has been quite a bit of clamoring for a Diablo 4 announcement. Many even predicted that the game was going to be announced at this year’s BlizzCon. If Blizzard was truly in touch with their base, they would have known beforehand what their audience was expecting and that they were delivering a product that no one asked for.

Especially since one of the first questions asked about the new Diablo game was if it was going to be available on the PC. The traditional platform of the franchise. With no as an answer, many fans were even more upset by the announcement.

The reaction from the audience was bad, to say the least.

What’s really interesting is you look at this year’s latest E3 announcement from Bethesda Studios. Bethesda announced that they were going to have their own mobile version of  The Elder Scrolls. And it was a card game to boot. The game is called The Elder Scrolls Legends. But here’s the thing, they knew that people weren’t there to hear about Legends, so they not only announced that game, they followed it up with a tease of the next The Elder Scrolls game as well. They gave the audience a tease of what they had come to hear about and what they were looking forward to it. It’s something that Blizzard failed to do.

Check out the teaser:

Nothing huge, it was just a photo with the title “The Elder Scrolls VI.” The difference? Bethesda made very clear they were listening to their customers and at least showed them that they were working on what they wanted, another Elder Scrolls title.

But that disconnect between Blizzard and its costumers might be more than just communication. As Mark points out, the company used to be very different in the past:

Finally, Mark makes it clear that in his belief this isn’t an issue of a “toxic gamer” or even “entitlement.” It was just a bad PR move. And when you compare the announcements of Diablo: Immortal and The Elder Scrolls Legends, you can see how both companies handled expectations in very different ways.

I’d love to hear from you. Does Mark Kern have a point? Was this just one hell of a PR misfire? Or is there an issue with a toxic fanbase within the Blizzard community? Let me know in the comments below!

 

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About The Author

Jorge Arenas
Resident Star Trek Specialist/ Writer

Jorge Arenas is a Governmental Affairs Director working in the Southwest. If Starfleet were real his career would be in a much different place. Currently, he specializes in all things Star Trek. He loves DC but has a soft spot for Deadpool. When not writing you can find him on World of Warcraft. Battle.net, ID-PassStage6#1707

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