We have a whole stack of these by now: these retrospectives from former Blizzard folks on what Project Titan could’ve been, had the MMO not been canned internally and then turned into Overwatch years ago. But we’re always game for another one, and former Blizzard President Mike Morhaime has obliged.
According to VG247, Morhaime spoke at GameLab Barcelona earlier this week, discussing how Project Titan was an “exception” to Blizzard’s traditional announce-nothing-until-it’s-really-ready philosophy.
“Titan is an exception to that where we wanted it to be our next generation, our sequel to sort of World of Warcraft. We took a lot of our senior developers and put them on this project. And I think where we really failed was we failed to control scope. It was very ambitious. […] It was a brand-new universe, and it was going to be the next generation MMO, that did all sorts of things, and it had different modes, and we were kind of building two games in parallel at the same time. It sort of never really came together.”
“At some point the team basically came to us and said that the engine really wasn’t where it needed to be, and the team had grown to a point that it was really difficult to get the engine to where it needed to be while keeping the team busy,” Morhaime told the audience. “And so they wanted to basically take some time to redo all the tooling and the technology to be able to be more productive making the game. And instead of doing that, we asked the team to take a couple of months and think about” other ideas and projects they could do with what they had.
One of those ideas was Overwatch, and the rest, as they say, is history.