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    #1

    Interview: Mike Morhaime; Blizzard CEO & co-founder

    Interview by Dan Cheer;

    Twenty years qualifies Blizzard as a veritable village elder of videogame development, one able to dispense sage advice accumulated over the course of several digital lifetimes. Moreover, the company remains extremely nimble, indeed, leads the pack in many respects.

    In light of that, we sat down with Mike Morhaime on Friday to discuss the company's past, present and future, and to try and learn the secret of its success:

    Gameplanet: What influenced you to become a game developer?

    Mike Morhaime: I kind of came at it from the technical side of things, I've always been interested in gadgets. As a kid growing up, I had an arcade console, and I spent hours and hours on that thing. It had a BASIC cartridge - that's how I learned how to program BASIC. It had 1.5K of RAM, you really couldn't do a lot with it! (laughs) but I just thought it was so fascinating, just getting it to do anything. I subscribed to a newsletter, every month they would publish different programmes you could type in. Most of them were games. And then I'd store them on my cassette tapes at 300 baud.
    Read more.

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    #2
    quote wrote:
    I actually visited New Zealand - actually got engaged in New Zealand! And on that trip, we visited Weta Workshops and got their tour, really amazing stuff they do there.
    He is such a geek!

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    #3
    And the founders of Blizzard are going to be out in New York at the NASDAQ stock exchange, they invited us out to ring the closing bell, so that'll be pretty fun! As part of that, we get to put up any video content we like on the big NASDAQ screen in Times Square, so we're going to show a bunch of Cataclysm and StarCraft II trailers.
    ohh what a good screen to announce something extra for Diablo 3 on :P

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    #4
    Great company with a great work ethic. Also good to hear that pretty much everyone in the AV industry seem to have Weta workshop in high regard. Repping hard?

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    #5
    Why not ask him why service to Aus and NZ is still so terrible when they've clearly got more than enough money to deal with the issue?

    Where are the Aus/NZ servers? And don't even mention the terrible botch job that is the SEA Starcraft II realms, which we actually footed the bill for since the SEA versions of Starcraft II were about $10 more expensive with the new realms being given as the reason.

    Honestly though, why even bother interviewing someone like this, asking the most generic questions you can think of and not even mentioning the 400+ ping we still endure on their games?

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    #6
    Servilcat wrote:
    Why not ask him why service to Aus and NZ is still so terrible when they've clearly got more than enough money to deal with the issue?

    Where are the Aus/NZ servers? And don't even mention the terrible botch job that is the SEA Starcraft II realms, which we actually footed the bill for since the SEA versions of Starcraft II were about $10 more expensive with the new realms being given as the reason.

    Honestly though, why even bother interviewing someone like this, asking the most generic questions you can think of and not even mentioning the 400+ ping we still endure on their games?
    The interview was regarding the history of Blizzard, from Morhaime's perspective. When our request for an interview with the lead StarCraft developers on server latency gets approved, you'll be the first to know.

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    #7
    Servilcat wrote:
    Why not ask him why service to Aus and NZ is still so terrible when they've clearly got more than enough money to deal with the issue?

    Where are the Aus/NZ servers? And don't even mention the terrible botch job that is the SEA Starcraft II realms, which we actually footed the bill for since the SEA versions of Starcraft II were about $10 more expensive with the new realms being given as the reason.

    Honestly though, why even bother interviewing someone like this, asking the most generic questions you can think of and not even mentioning the 400+ ping we still endure on their games?
    Cry more you pathetic specimen.

    Great interview, the guy would be great to have a beer with

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    #8
    Servilcat wrote:
    Why not ask him why service to Aus and NZ is still so terrible when they've clearly got more than enough money to deal with the issue?

    Where are the Aus/NZ servers? And don't even mention the terrible botch job that is the SEA Starcraft II realms, which we actually footed the bill for since the SEA versions of Starcraft II were about $10 more expensive with the new realms being given as the reason.

    Honestly though, why even bother interviewing someone like this, asking the most generic questions you can think of and not even mentioning the 400+ ping we still endure on their games?
    It's like GP doesn't even understand that the most pressing matter in gaming right now is your SC2 ping! Useless!

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    #9
    exis wrote:
    It's like GP doesn't even understand that the most pressing matter in gaming right now is your SC2 ping! Useless!
    be careful when you say that... they plan to put our Diablo 3 Oceanic servers in the exact same place... and keep us separated from NA again... which would again include Oceanic's WoW servers (making Bnet 2 cross platform not work between them)

    i cannot go find proof of it atm, i believe i have heard it mentioned briefly before... but what else would they do with the "SEA AU/NZ" servers. they can't keep it exclusively for SC2, or i believe the whole "battlenet 2" idea has already failed. They have to include more games into it.

    The only other fix i can see, would be Connecting it to NA somehow (so, they'd probably connect EU up as well). Other than that, "giving us access to both SEA and NA" doesn't work as well for a MMO or ARPG where gear and character is a HUUUUUUGE part. Luckily Starcraft 2 is a skill based game, and your account means little. it worked for that game.

    I personally would have had different questions to ask, more along the lines of SEA problems relating to Bnet 2.0 and its future with their games. If anyone was to ask those questions, its an AUS / NZ site... we can let Americans ask the average Joe questions.

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    #10
    Yeah, i'm definitely buying overseas because of this

    Otherwise I would've grabbed a limited edition

    Battle.net SEA blows and it always will if they keep their servers in Singapore instead of Oz

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    #11
    Bt wrote:
    Yeah, i'm definitely buying overseas because of this

    Otherwise I would've grabbed a limited edition

    Battle.net SEA blows and it always will if they keep their servers in Singapore instead of Oz
    completely agree....

    i feel WORSE OFF because of them... they suck to play on, its just less people and similar/worse ping (NZ has shit all optimization to Asia, its all towards NA)
    and... now i cant get a collectors edition at a midnight launch party and be home to play it within the hour.

    its either buy it digitally and have no box (which.. i ultimately want every blizzard box on my shelf..) or.. play SEA. (which i WANT to play NA, but SEA is negatively affecting me).

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    #12
    Thunder Rod wrote:
    Cry more you pathetic specimen.

    Great interview, the guy would be great to have a beer with
    Blizzard is the owner of the most lucrative game in the world and they offer New Zealanders a truly second rate service. If I, as at least some representation of the New Zealand gaming community, had the ear of the CEO of Blizzard it might cross my mind to ask why this remains the case, even when their games are extremely popular here and in Australia on a per population basis.

    The fact we have to buy overseas just to get onto servers on the other side of the world because they're actually better is a joke.

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    #13
    Would be nice to have Aussie servers but the sad truth is they don't give that much of a shit about us.

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    #14
    Once again, we were granted this opportunity based on Blizzard's 20th anniversary, and our questions were likewise structured around that topic. Morhaime would not have answered any question about your ping. We have however approached Blizzard to see if we can clarify this in another article.

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    #15

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    #16
    JvJ wrote:
    Once again, we were granted this opportunity based on Blizzard's 20th anniversary, and our questions were likewise structured around that topic. Morhaime would not have answered any question about your ping. We have however approached Blizzard to see if we can clarify this in another article.
    Nice