"More broad appeal" for Blizzard MMO

Kotick aiming high with WOW successor.

Activision Blizzard chief Bobby Kotick has said that Blizzard's next, in-development MMO will have a "more broad appeal". Presumably he means broader that World of Warcraft's.

Asked about plans for the Battle.net online platform at a technology conference - as reported by GameSpot - bubbly burnette Kotick said: "What we've announced at Blizzard is that we have StarCraft coming, Diablo has been in production... and a new, unannounced MMO that has a little more broad appeal."

Having 11 million players and dominating the global online gaming landscape seems pretty broad already, Bobby.

However, easy digs aside, we do already know that Blizzard's new MMO will be "a different massively multiplayer experience" and "a brand new franchise" that's not intended to compete directly with WOW.

In light of that, we'd interpret Kotick's comment to mean that the new game will step outside the traditional, complex and time-intensive MMORPG genre, to which WOW belongs and which many players do find off-putting. Could we be looking at a massively multiplayer action or racing game, perhaps? Or something aimed at younger and casual players, like Sony Online Entertainment's Free Realms?

With regard to StarCraft II, Kotick also mentioned "cash play and prize play" as an element in Battle.net's tournament system. "As we start to add cash play and prize play and better rewards and recognition systems that come through the Internet, you will start to see audiences expand even further," he said.

Pressed further by GameSpot, a Blizzard spokesman wouldn't admit this was anything more than the existing tournaments that begin online and end with cash-prize finals at BlizzCon. But Kotick seems to think it is.

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