Until 2020, the Diablo 2 remake was to be developed by Blizzard Team 1, which is located at its Irvine, California campus and was the group of choice to rework classic games. Its latest title, Warcraft III: Reforged, was not received positively and currently has an aggregate site of 59 reviews. Metacritic, which also happens to be Blizzard’s lowest score to date. IGN gave Warcraft III: Reforged a 7/10, saying it “is an uninspiring remaster, but Warcraft 3 itself is still a great game almost two decades later.”
Internal documents reviewed by Bloomberg place the game’s failures on “poor planning, poor communication, and hasty publication due to financial pressure from management, among other factors.” An example given was that, following the game’s revelation in November 2018, he started taking preorders for 2019 before letting most of the development team know about the release window.
Blizzard and Team 1 obviously didn’t want to make the same mistakes with the highly anticipated Diablo 2 remaster, and after a “post-mortem,” Blizzard ended up removing the remaster from the team and putting the division behind Diablo IV at orders. Vicarious Visions would also be working on this project, which is or was known as Diablo II: Resurrected.
In October 2020, Blizzard reorganized the entire division known as Team 1 and team members were given the opportunity to interview for other roles within the company. Those who couldn’t find a job were ultimately fired, while others opted to move to independent studios like Frost Giant Inc., and DreamHaven Inc., the latter of which was founded by co-founder and former Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime.
Every IGN Blizzard game review
Prior to Warcraft III: Reforged, Team 1 was responsible for both Heroes of the Storm and StarCraft 2. In 2018, Blizzard has started curtailing the development of Heroes of the Storm, and StarCraft 2 has also recently ended content development.
For those still playing Warcraft III: Reforged or waiting for updates, a company spokesperson said it is “still committed to updates to support the community.”
A report released in 2020 said that the long-rumored Diablo 2 remaster was due to arrive in the same year, and it is possible that these developmental changes and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic may have contributed to its internal delay.
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