BlizzCon is skipping 2024 in favor for multiple global events to showcase World of Warcraft, Diablo's expansion, and more

 Blizzcon event.
Blizzcon event.

What you need to know

  • BlizzCon is Blizzard's famed convention event, typically annualized and held at the Anaheim Convention Center in the United States.

  • Since 2005, BlizzCon has served as the primary platform for sharing major World of Warcraft, Diablo, StarCraft, and Overwatch news.

  • This year, Blizzard has revealed that BlizzCon will skip 2024 in favor of multiple global events instead.

  • BlizzCon is not cancelled, however, and will return in the usual format in the future.

  • UPDATE: Blizzard confirms this decision was made internally at Blizzard, not higher up at Microsoft.

Update, 2:35 p.m. ET:

Blizzard Entertainment confirms to Windows Central that the decision to skip BlizzCon in 2024 was made by Blizzard and not from higher up at Microsoft. When this news initially broke, some speculation on social media questioned where the decision came from.

"This is a Blizzard decision. We have explored different event formats in the past and this isn't the first time we're skipping BlizzCon or trying something new. While we have great things to share in 2024, the timing just doesn’t line up for one single event at the end of the year," a Blizzard spokesperson tells Windows Central.

"Instead, we want to focus on highlighting individual games and their moments - Warcraft’s multiple anniversaries, the upcoming releases of World of Warcraft: The War Within and Diablo IV’s first expansion, Vessel of Hatred in particular."

Original story: 

Since 2005, BlizzCon has served as Blizzard's primary platform for announcing major game news to the world, while celebrating its core franchises with fans. From cosplay contests, original music, live bands, esports tournaments, and much more — Blizzcon is the highlight of the year for fans of World of Warcraft, StarCraft, Overwatch, and Diablo. Typically, major news around these pillar Blizzard franchises gets revealed at Blizzcon, but Blizzard is doing things a little differently this year.

Announced in a blog post on Blizzard's website, the firm revealed that this year, Blizzcon will skip the usual in-person format in Anaheim, and will instead bring Blizzard news to other gaming events throughout the year. Blizzard also emphasized that BlizzCon is not permanently cancelled, and will return to Anaheim in the future.

"After careful consideration over the last year, we at Blizzard have made the decision not to hold BlizzCon in 2024. This decision was not made lightly as BlizzCon remains a very special event for all of us, and we know many of you look forward to it. While we’re approaching this year differently and as we have explored different event formats in the past, rest assured that we are just as excited as ever to bring BlizzCon back in future years. 

Over the next few months, we’ll be sharing more details about our launches coming later this year, including World of Warcraft: The War Within and Diablo IV's first expansion, Vessel of Hatred. To celebrate these upcoming releases and to bring our communities together in new and special ways, we will soon share some exciting plans for other industry trade shows and conventions like Gamescom. We can’t wait to tell you more about those plans soon."

Blizzard also noted upcoming esports events such as the Overwatch Champion Series, while emphasizing the fact Warcraft as a franchise is celebrating its 30th anniversary, with World of Warcraft celebrating its 20th.

BlizzCon will return

The War Within World of Warcraft
The War Within World of Warcraft

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Reading between the lines, it could be that Blizzard brings its content to events like Summer Games Fest and the Xbox Showcase in June 2024, in addition to the mentioned Gamescom in August 2024. It could also be that development timelines won't line up super great for BlizzCon this year in terms of big announcements. Blizzcon has typically taken place in November, and with World of Warcraft: The War Within and Diablo 4: Vessel of Hatred both likely launched by then, there might not be enough major announcements prepared to make a 2024 singular blow-out news event worth while. That doesn't mean there's nothing in the oven, though.

Blizzard just posted a set of new vacancies on its website, seeking high-up positions for a completely new, unknown game. Xbox CEO Phil Spencer has also frequently teased his desire to see StarCraft return in some form, and given that Microsoft now owns Blizzard as part of the Activision acquisition, perhaps it increases the likelihood of this iconic sci-fi franchise being revisited. World of Warcraft already has not one, but two upcoming expansions announced for after The War Within, and Diablo 4 is doubtless going to get more story expansions too down the line. Blizzard also just resumed services in China in partnership with NetEase, which should bring a sizeable cash injection back into the brand.

Either way, I'm glad Blizzard confirmed that the event will return some day, especially since, selfishly, it's still in my bucket list to attend. Revealing a new StarCraft would definitely be worth holding a major BlizzCon event for ... we can only hope!