Star-Fired Beef

The Next Step


I was watching the features video for the latest patch of Diablo 3, and it looks like Blizz is getting more heavily into rewarding fluff – portraits, pets, exclusive transmog gear or dyes, banners.

Then I remembered the cross-promotional stuff they’ve been doing for years, with pets and mounts – Hearthstone -> Heroes, Diablo -> WoW, Diablo -> Heroes, Heroes -> Hearthstone…

And then I remembered that they recently upped the ante by giving the Diablo hero away in HotS if you own a copy of D3.

So the logical next step, is for Blizzard to start having pets or card backs or portraits or other fluff attainable by completing tasks in other games. Defeat this rare in WoW to unlock a pet in D3. Reach max level in Hardcore D3 to get a HotS mount. Win X games in Hearthstone to earn some transmog item in WoW.

What do you think? Possible?

4 thoughts on “The Next Step

  1. They could if they wanted to. Throw in achievements for purchasing DLC for their products too, and you’ve got a cross-platform metagame juggernaut on your hands!

  2. Would not surprise me if they did.

  3. Actually it would surprise me if they did that. On short term it might be a money machine, but in long term the risks are too high. Just consider if they deliver just one game which the community responds negatively to. At the same time the achievement hunters feel forced to then buy and play the game, while actually hating it. Certainly, some would go for the effort, but a lot of others would feel cheated and skip it.

    For a RL analalogy, somebody really loves playing Magic the Gathering (equivalent to Heartstone). But now suddenly he finds that to get some special cards (which he wants/needs to stay as good or special as he sees himself), he has to participate and win in a paintball game, a socker match and a fight in the boxing ring. Do you really think he will continue playing Magic? I mean yes, there are some people out there who play magic and also do several kinds of sports, maybe even all the mentioned ones, but that’s not all of the players.

    The potential of milking money out of the hardcore Blizzard-addicts by interlocking their products in the described way is there. But the risk of loosing potential customers, especially the most dedicated ones (it’s those who really care for all the achievements and special stuff) also should not be ignored. Thus i think that Blizzard might be aware of the potential, but won’t do that unless they end up in a critical financial situation where short term income beats long term prospects.

    • To clarify: just buying a game already exists now. And i am even aware of people among my friends who basically did that. (E.g. one casual player of WoW left his subscription running for another year, as that gave him Diablo 3 for free or something like that. )Buy one game to have the gadgets in another and consider the new game as “free to take a look”. But several of those games did not meet the personal expectations and were quickly discarded again. (E.g. Diablo 3, which was taken, tested for two weeks and left behind. )

      That part of the business works. On my RL example that is like “buy a ticket for a socker match to get some special magic cards” and this indeed works. But forcing people to play those games, despite they don’t like that kind of game, is a very bad idea and i doubt it’ll happen.

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