Tickets to BlizzCon 2008 will go on sale beginning August 11, and Blizzard has a surprise for fans who can't make it: The event will be televised.
Tickets for the two-day show will be sold for $100 each, according to Kotaku, giving fans access to panels, previews of upcoming games, concerts and other cool free stuff. In a surprise move, Blizzard has joined forces with satellite broadcaster DirecTV to televise the event in HD pay-per-view, with a minimum eight hours of daily coverage featuring interviews, demos and more. DirecTV will also be offering the coverage free to any new customer who signs up for DirecTV service in the month of August.
"Meeting and interacting with our players at BlizzCon is always a great experience for us," said Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime. "We're also pleased to be working with DirecTV this year to bring the show, for the first time, to those players who are unable to attend."
"BlizzCon is one of the most highly anticipated gaming conventions of the year, and we are excited to partner with Blizzard Entertainment to deliver coverage of the show to gamers nationwide," added DirecTV Senior Vice President Steven Roberts. "With our BlizzCon pay-per-view package, members of Blizzard's gaming communities who are not attending the event can now experience it in crystal-clear HD."
Crystal-clear HD is cool, and I've been a pretty big Diablo fan for a lot of years, but I'm not really seeing a big benefit to this. Attending BlizzCon might be fun, but I suspect that watching it on television would be somewhat less thrilling. A half-hour, or maybe even an hour, of condensed, post-show wrap-up might be worth catching between A-Team reruns and Stargate: SG-1, but 16 hours of pay-per-view? For all but the most hardcore Blizzard fanboys, it's a bit much.
More details about this year's BlizzCon, including links to purchase tickets when they go on sale, can be found at www.blizzcon.com.