Blizzard roused suspicions last November when it posted job listings pertaining to a "Diablo-related concept for consoles." When questioned, the developer quelled that brush fire by suggesting that nothing was official and it was simply exploring the possibility of developing a Diablo title for consoles -- an initiative that may be underway. At Gamescom today, Blizzard all but confirmed that it's preparing a Diablo title for consoles.
Diablo 3 lead designer Josh Mosqueira said that Blizzard "is very, very serious about bringing the Diablo 3 experience to the console," noting that the developer is already assembling a team to tackle the project. "We're looking for programmers, designers, artists who think their dream job would be to bring Diablo to the console. Trust me, it is a dream job," Mosqueria said. "All I can say is, it's going to be awesome. Stay tuned."
Based on EuroGamer's report, Mosqueria didn't elaborate on what the project might be, but Blizzard suggested last year that it wouldn't directly port the PC version of Diablo III to consoles because it might degrade the title's quality. Instead, the developer said it was more likely to produce a spinoff in the same universe. Despite expressing interest bringing Diablo to consoles, Blizzard stressed that its core focus remained on PC.
The long-awaited dungeon crawler is still lacking an official release date for PC, but it's expected to enter a public beta phase sometime this quarter, possibly coinciding with Blizzard's annual Blizzcon event in October. A few weeks ago, we learned that the game will require a permanent Internet connection to play, and it will have an in-game auction system that allows players to exchange digital content for real-world currency.
During the same Gamescom press conference, cofounder Frank Pearce also explained that Blizzard has no plans to develop a StarCraft MMO as it's too busy with existing projects. "We definitely feel like all the worlds we create would lend themselves well to multiple genres and multiple forms of media," he said, adding that Blizzard would consider backing an in-house team that was passionate about creating a StarCraft MMO.
"Right now…we've got our hands full with everything we're doing, so we don't really have any plans to do anything beyond the StarCraft RTSs and the expansions right now. But anything's possible, because we have created such rich and cool universes." Earlier this year, a group of modders unveiled an ambitious project to create a WoW-like StarCraft game originally called World of StarCraft, but later renamed to StarCraft Universe.