Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. is an American video game developer and publisher based in Irvine, California, and is a subsidiary of the American company Activision Blizzard. The company is best known for World of Warcraft, Diablo, Overwatch and Starcraft. Check out some awesome facts about this epic company!
1. The company was founded on February 8, 1991, under the name Silicon & Synapse.
2. It was founded by three graduates of the University of California, Los Angeles: Michael Morhaime, Frank Pearce, and Allen Adham.
3. The company originally concentrated on the creation of game ports for other studios before beginning development of their own software in 1993 with games like Rock n’ Roll Racing and The Lost Vikings.
4. In 1994 the company became Chaos Studios, Inc., then Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. after being acquired by distributor Davidson & Associates.
5. Shortly thereafter, Blizzard released Warcraft: Orcs & Humans. Blizzard created several other video games, including Warcraft sequels, the Diablo series, the StarCraft series, and in 2004 the massively multiplayer online role-playing game World of Warcraft.
6. The company makes about an additional $1.66 billion annually, due to micro-transactions.
7. On July 9, 2008, Activision merged with Vivendi Games, culminating in the inclusion of the Blizzard brand name in the title of the resulting holding company.
8. Blizzard Entertainment hosts conventions for fans to meet and to promote their games: the BlizzCon in California, United States, and the Blizzard Worldwide Invitational in other countries, including South Korea and France.
9. In early 1994, they were acquired by distributor Davidson & Associates for $6.75 million ($10.9 million today). That same year the company briefly changed its name to Chaos Studios, before finally settling on Blizzard Entertainment (after it was discovered that another company with the Chaos name already existed)
10. Shortly thereafter, Blizzard shipped their breakthrough hit Warcraft: Orcs & Humans.
11. In 1996, Blizzard acquired Condor Games, which had been working on the game Diablo for Blizzard at the time. Condor was renamed Blizzard North, and has since developed the games Diablo, Diablo II, and its expansion pack Lord of Destruction. Blizzard North was located in San Mateo, California. The company originated in Redwood City, California.
12. World of Warcraft was released on November 23, 2004.
13. World of Warcraft is the fourth released game set in the fantasy Warcraft universe, which was first introduced by Warcraft: Orcs & Humans in 1994.
14. Blizzard announced World of Warcraft on September 2, 2001.
15. It was released on the 10th anniversary of the Warcraft franchise.
16. Having peaked at 12 million monthly subscriptions in 2010, World of Warcraft subscriptions sunk to 6.8 million in 2014, the lowest number since the end of 2006, prior to The Burning Crusade expansion.
17. World of Warcraft is still the world’s most-subscribed MMORPG and holds the Guinness World Record for the most popular MMORPG by subscribers.
18. In April 2008, World of Warcraft was estimated to hold 62 percent of the MMORPG subscription market.
19. In 2008, Blizzard was honored at the 59th Annual Technology & Engineering Emmy Awards for the creation of World of Warcraft. Mike Morhaime accepted the award.
20. In 2012 Blizzard had 4,700 employees, with offices across 11 cities including Austin, Texas, and countries around the globe.
21. As of June 2015, the company’s headquarters in Irvine, California had 2,622 employees.
22. Currently, Blizzard has four main franchises: Warcraft, Diablo, StarCraft, and Overwatch. Each franchise is supported by other media based around its intellectual property such as novels, collectible card games, comics and video shorts.
23. Blizzard has a couple of unreleased titles like Warcraft Adventures: Lord of the Clans, which was cancelled on May 22, 1998, Shattered Nations, and StarCraft: Ghost, which was “Postponed indefinitely” on March 24, 2006 and a few more.
24. Blizzard don’t go well with deadlines. Their motto is “it’s done when it’s done”.
25. The game director of ‘Overwatch’, Jeff Kaplan, originally set out to be a writer, and landed into his dream job by accident.
26. Blizzard released its revamped Battle.net service in 2009.
27. The company is estimated to be worth US$18.9 billion.
28. Blizz currently harbors around 5,000 employees!
29. Shortly after Valve Corporation filed its trademark for “Dota” to secure the franchising rights for Dota 2, DotA-Allstars, LLC, run by former contributors to the games’s predecessor, Defense of the Ancients, filed an opposing trademark in August 2010. DotA All-Stars, LLC was sold to Blizzard Entertainment in 2011.
30. Blizzard was awarded the Guinness World Record for largest gaming diorama on November 3, 2017.