Los Angeles, May 15, 1999 – At the Electronic Entertainment Expo starting today, Blizzard Entertainment® announced a series of strategic licensing partnerships for its three number-one selling game properties, Diablo™, StarCraft™ and Warcraft®. Line extensions include novels, paper-based games, strategy guides and action figures.
Blizzard is in final negotiations with a major book publisher to license novelization rights for its Diablo, StarCraft and Warcraft universes. Under a nine-book deal, three novels will be published for each game. The first in each series will begin appearing during the spring and summer of 2000.
Additionally, Wizards of the Coast subsidiary TSR Inc. is designing traditional role-playing adventures set in the Diablo and StarCraft worlds. TSR Inc. is creating a variety of products including fast-play games, boxed sets and adventure module. The Diablo games will be based on the Advanced Dungeons and Dragons rule book, while the StarCraft products will follow the Alternity® science fiction role-playing rules system. The first games are scheduled for release later this year.
BradyGAMES is the official and exclusive strategy guide publisher for Diablo II. The official guide will contain complete coverage for all weapons, shrines, armor, spells, and abilities needed to defeat the bosses. Scheduled to coincide with the release of the game, the 200-page guide will also include information on all five character classes, their abilities, strengths and weaknesses.
Following last year’s successful launch of StarCraft and Warcraft action figures, Blizzard also announced plans to self-publish a line of Diablo II figures. The first series will include Diablo and three other heroes and monsters from the game. The action figures will be available when Diablo II launches later this year. “As a company, we take a very conservative approach to extending our brand through licensing. Our first priority is protecting the integrity of our games and offering new products that make sense for our target market of gamers,” said Paul Sams, vice president of business development. “By partnering with companies such as TSR Inc. and BradyGAMES, we are able to grow our properties without diluting the value of our franchises.”
Best known for blockbuster hits including the Warcraft ® series, Starcraft™ and Diablo™, Blizzard Entertainment® (www.blizzard.com) is a premier publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating many of the industry’s most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard’s track record includes three consecutive number-one selling games and multiple Game of the Year awards. The company’s free Internet gaming service Battle.net reigns as the largest in the world with millions of unique users.
Wizards of the Coast is a leading developer and publisher of entertainment products, including the world’s best-selling Magic: The Gathering® trading card game. Wizards of the Coast® subsidiaries include TSR Inc. and Five Rings Publishing Group Inc. For more information on Wizards of the Coast, visit the company’s website at www.wizards.com.
As a division of Macmillan Computer Publishing, BradyGAMES is a leader in the electronic entertainment publishing industry with value-priced strategy guides for video and PC-based games. Macmillan Computer Publishing is one of the industry’s leading information and reference innovators in both print and digital formats. For more information on BradyGAMES, visit the company’s website at www.bradygames.com.