Some animated art from WOW, Diablo and StarCraft. WOW lead environment artist Gary Platner is welcoming the crowd and making some housekeeping announcements.
Eurogamer MMO's resident goblin commander Oli Welsh reported live from the opening ceremony of Blizzard's annual shindig in Anaheim, which brought us news of the fifth Diablo III class and PVP plans, and a pre-order plan for World of Warcraft: Cataclysm.
Now we're doing 'appropriate audience reactions'. He's just told the crowd of thousands in here to go crazy. Ear-splitting noise. Now: CEO Mike Morhaime. No beard this year.
This is a special year for Blizzard: two launches, 5 years of WOW, 10 years since Diablo II, 12 million WOW players. That would sell out Disneyland 5 months straight, says Mike.
Next Feb will be Blizzard's 20th anniversary. "Back then there were only three great Star Wars films in existence. Now... Oh."
We're going to see Blizzard DotA, StarJeweled, Left2Die and more StarCraft II custom mods which will be released this year for free.
There's an awkward pause and Mike does Horde and Alliance war cries. PowerPoint hitch then.
They're going to auction some actual WOW server hardware. Oh and Arthas has been killed 489,000 times in Lich King.
Blizzard is releasing two games this year for the first time since 1998. "I guess it's a double rainbow year for us. What does it mean?"
The SCII launch trailer was the number one video on YouTube for a week. "That means for just one glorious week, Terran Marines kicked Justin Bieber's ass."
Highlights reel of the last year, including last year's BlizzCon and the SCII launch.
Hyperactive footage of the first big Korean SCII tournaments. Thousands rejoce. They actually do.
Two great SC players including the out-of-retirement FruitDealer will be conducting an exhibition match tonight.
Jay Mohr's back to host the hilarious costume contest tonight - his bemusement is a joy to behold - and Tenacious D's performance tomorrow gets bigged up.
"Some of the band's content will not be appropriate for every age group. In fact it won't be appropriate for most age groups."
For the first time you'll be able to pre-order WOW Cataclysm direct from Blizzard, download in advance and play as soon as they turn servers on on December 7th.
Chris Metzen's here in a pimp hoodie to present a major update on Diablo III.
More crowd-baiting warmup cheers.
"I hear passion. I hear identity." Dead people? No?
Metzen looks like he's struggling a bit, complaining about having cotton mouth, but whenever he starts shouting it picks up.
Now he's going to try a four-letter word on us to test our reaction. "GEEK".
"This word is power. This word is identity. This is our word."
Geek is... A slide of Transformers. A D20 die. Conan. (Metzen does quite a good Arnie.)
Captain America. Samurai Shodown 2. Thundercats. The crowd screams HOOO.
Geek is... Luke Skywalker. Joust. Action Man. The Matrix. Spider-Man. DOOM.
So Blizzard's next MMO is about Thundercats?
The crowd's lapping this up.
Geek is... Ripley in Alien. Thor. The Dark Knight Returns. Battlestar Galactica.
EverQuest. "None of us and none of this would be without EQ. Respect must be paid." Fair dos.
AD&D. The Borg. Lord of the Rings. "Geek is watching your kids watching Star Wars for the first time and wondering if it will transform their imaginations the way it did yours."
Is this guy going for President or something? Let's see the game.
Running massive online worlds can feel like big business sometimes, but he's here to remind us it's about imagination. VOTE BLIZZARD
It's time to find out who the final player class will be in Diablo III. Movie time. An armoured, hooded lady.
Two crossbows. The hunter!
Magical grenades, explosive ranged and melee attacks in gameplay.
The fifth and final player class for Diablo III is the Demon Hunter!
"I stand alone, and if they keep coming, I'll keep killing."
That's not all from Diablo III. Now: PVP battle arenas.
Deathmatch, team battle modes.
PVP and the Demon Hunter are playable on the show floor.
We're going to wrap things up with the Cataclysm launch trailer - with a special sonic intro.
Lights down. Deafening grinding, crunching and crashing sounds. Flashes of light.
PAIN. AGONY. See the sunny side, Deathwing old boy.
The trailer's stunning but you've seen it before and my thumbs are about to go into spasm.
The crowd cheers dutifully but it's been a bit flat, to be honest.
Still the Demon Hunter looks sweet as.
I'm going to get stuck into Diablo III gameplay and talks. This year's BlizzCon is all about the action RPG and the devil will doubtless be in the details.
Watch for more updates soon. Later!