The Head of Blizzard Explains the Death of StarCraft Ghost

Illustration for article titled The Head of Blizzard Explains the Death of StarCraft Ghost

The makers of mega hits World of Warcraft and StarCraft II don't seem to have many missteps, but they have had some tough decisions to make over the years.


Despite their tremendous successes with World of Warcraft, Blizzard still has to pick and choose what to try and make and what to kill, said Blizzard head Mike Morhaime.

"We have to choose, we can't do everything," he said during a panel last week at the Design Innovate Create Explore summit. "Our vision for what's possible directs that. We like complex games and we like casual games."

Those choices sometimes lead to killing a game in progress.

"They were working on StarCraft Ghost the same time we were working on World of Warcraft and StarCraft II," Morhaime said, "World of Warcraft exploded and we needed to make some resource decisions. It just wasn't an environment in which a project like (StarCraft Ghost ) could succeed."

Fortunately, not all of Morhaime's decisions are followed.

The head of Blizzard said that he initially fought the push for a context sensitive interface for StarCraft, because they were done with it and ready to ship.


"The entire programming staff said absolutely not, and I said absolutely not," he said. "Allen (Adham, one of the founders of Blizzard and StarCraft executive producer) went around me and went to a programmer and had him add it on his own.

"It luckily worked and it was very elegant. In retrospect it would have been a disaster if I had won that argument."


"We have to choose, we can't do everything."

What a gigantic understatement, coming from the guys who release a game every 10-12 years (even if the game is almost identical to the previous version).