It’s been a few years since Blizzard has hosted an in-person version of BlizzCon, its fan convention, but it sounds like that’s going to change in 2023. The company, known for huge franchises like World of Warcraft and Diablo, is “committed to bringing back BlizzCon in 2023,” Blizzard boss Mike Ybarra told the Los Angeles Times.
“We previously announced we’re taking a pause on BlizzCon while we reimagine it for the future but do want to return to a live event that enables us to celebrate the community,” Ybarra said. “We recently hired a new leader of BlizzCon, April McKee, who is hard at work on that plan. ... We are committed to bringing back BlizzCon in 2023.”
It’s not clear when the event might happen, and when reached for comment, Activision Blizzard pointed back to what Ybarra said to the Los Angeles Times. The company last hosted an in-person BlizzCon in November 2019, but the 2020 and 2021 iterations were canceled due to COVID-19. While it did host a virtual “BlizzConline” event in 2021, the planned 2022 version of that event was put on pause after allegations about company’s toxic work culture came to light last year.
BlizzCon isn’t the only big gaming event set to return next year. E3 didn’t happen at all this June, but the Entertainment Software Association is planning to bring it back as a physical and digital event in 2023. Geoff Keighley’s Summer Game Fest will be returning with a digital and in-person event as well, setting up a potential clash of summer gaming conferences.
Update July 6th, 7:57PM ET: Activision Blizzard pointed back to Ybarra’s statements to the Los Angeles Times.