Diablo® III

Crazy release idea

Posts: 2,658
Don't get me wrong, I'm not making a prediction. I'm not getting my hopes up about this. I'm just saying it's something Blizzard could do. This is a 'what if' thread.

Anyway, many people have said Blizzard needs 2 months between announcing the release date and the date itself. But is that really true? Why does Blizzard need to wait for retailers to get copies of the game?

I downloaded Cataclysm directly from Blizzard and started playing it shortly after 11pm (in Alaska) when the servers went live. I loved the option to download it and I will use the same system for D3. Since this option has been tested and proven to work, does Blizzard still need to wait for retailers?

Here's the idea: Blizzard could announce a digital exclusive release for March 6 (for example), meaning people would be able to purchase and download the game so they could play it at 12:01am on March 6. The retail release could be a week later, March 13, about 2 months from today, the 17th.

Financially, this makes a lot of sense. Buying it online costs the same as buying it retail, but retailers take a significant chunk of that price. Blizzard's profit margin is much higher for every game bought through the downloader than it is for games bought at retail. The retailers might complain about this, what could they do?

If you want a traditional disk and box, you could pay a little extra for shipping. You could buy the CE and download while it's getting shipped to you.

Yes, this is a crazy idea, probably won't happen, but it does make some sense. Would you like it if Blizzard went with a release like this?
Edited by Lucied on 1/17/2012 1:02 AM PST
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I'd hate that. Considering I'm getting the CE, I'd have to wait. :\
Blizzard would have no way of knowing you bought the game when you did up until you get it, so Blizzard wouldn't let you just download the game if you don't have it.
Edited by D3BETA on 1/17/2012 1:18 AM PST
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Posts: 2,658
01/17/2012 01:17 AMPosted by D3BETA
I'd hate that. Considering I'm getting the CE, I'd have to wait. :\
No, like I said, you could download it like the rest of us while your CE is in the mail.
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Posts: 1,291
Bad idea tangible is good
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Posts: 2,658
Blizzard would have no way of knowing you bought the game when you did up until you get it, so Blizzard wouldn't let you just download the game if you don't have it.
Wait, what? Could you rephrase that?

It's not that complicated. You go to the Blizzard store and purchase the digital version. There's a button that says "Click here to upgrade to the Collector's Edition for $40." You click there, pay the fee and enter your shipping info. Then you can download it and play it while you're waiting for the CE in the mail.

I don't see the problem.
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01/17/2012 01:19 AMPosted by Lucied
I'd hate that. Considering I'm getting the CE, I'd have to wait. :\
No, like I said, you could download it like the rest of us while your CE is in the mail.


How would Blizzard know he was 'allowed' to play though until he entered in his product key from the CE?

Additionally, I'm fairly certain that Blizzard has agreements with major retailers now to sell exclusively through their site before the game is on shelves. That would piss off a lot of retailers.

What I could see happening is a much smaller window between release date announcement, and release. The usual 2 month lead time doesn't necessarily have to apply to Diablo III, though it very well could. I honestly wouldn't be surprised by a 1 month turn around time between announcement and release.

If Blizz was incredibly sneaky they could ship the physical game and then announce the release date for ~1 week later. That's pretty doubtful though given that retailers need a little more notice than that to make their schedules for the midnight launch.

Anyway, that's all conjecture on my part, but I'm betting on about a month lead time.
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01/17/2012 01:23 AMPosted by Lucied
Blizzard would have no way of knowing you bought the game when you did up until you get it, so Blizzard wouldn't let you just download the game if you don't have it.
Wait, what? Could you rephrase that?

It's not that complicated. You go to the Blizzard store and purchase the digital version. There's a button that says "Click here to upgrade to the Collector's Edition for $40." You click there, pay the fee and enter your shipping info. Then you can download it and play it while you're waiting for the CE in the mail.

I don't see the problem.


There is probably no process in place to allow users to 'upgrade' their digital copy of the game with the key from a CE. Even if there was, Everyone has preordered their CE from brick and mortar stores, where they will have to purchase the CE for ~$100. How could they go on Battle.net and activate their game for $60, then upgrade after spending $100 more? Just doesn't work. Would be awesome, but just won't work.
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01/17/2012 01:28 AMPosted by Mraeric
Wait, what? Could you rephrase that?

It's not that complicated. You go to the Blizzard store and purchase the digital version. There's a button that says "Click here to upgrade to the Collector's Edition for $40." You click there, pay the fee and enter your shipping info. Then you can download it and play it while you're waiting for the CE in the mail.

I don't see the problem.


There is probably no process in place to allow users to 'upgrade' their digital copy of the game with the key from a CE. Even if there was, Everyone has preordered their CE from brick and mortar stores, where they will have to purchase the CE for ~$100. How could they go on Battle.net and activate their game for $60, then upgrade after spending $100 more? Just doesn't work. Would be awesome, but just won't work.


Edit - Unless you are suggesting that everyone who has pre-ordered the CE cancel their pre-order and then purchase the CE online (which is currently not possible). That would piss off a lot of retailers.
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Posts: 2,658
Edit - Unless you are suggesting that everyone who has pre-ordered the CE cancel their pre-order and then purchase the CE online (which is currently not possible). That would piss off a lot of retailers.
Yeah, like I said in the OP, retailers would complain.

I pre-ordered Cataclysm from my local Gamestop. But then I looked into the download option and went into the Gamestop to cancel the order. They didn't like it, but they couldn't refuse to cancel the order.
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Posts: 2,658
There is probably no process in place to allow users to 'upgrade' their digital copy of the game with the key from a CE. Even if there was, Everyone has preordered their CE from brick and mortar stores, where they will have to purchase the CE for ~$100. How could they go on Battle.net and activate their game for $60, then upgrade after spending $100 more? Just doesn't work. Would be awesome, but just won't work.

There's isn't a system to upgrade your order now, but how hard would it be add that option?
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90 Troll Druid
1710
Posts: 442
They would lose money because not everyone has a credit card or paypal account (or others) to pay for stuff online...
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01/17/2012 01:35 AMPosted by Lucied
Edit - Unless you are suggesting that everyone who has pre-ordered the CE cancel their pre-order and then purchase the CE online (which is currently not possible). That would piss off a lot of retailers.
Yeah, like I said in the OP, retailers would complain.

I pre-ordered Cataclysm from my local Gamestop. But then I looked into the download option and went into the Gamestop to cancel the order. They didn't like it, but they couldn't refuse to cancel the order.


Retailers would more than complain. The major players could threaten to not carry Blizzard products in store at all, which would effect sales drastically. I don't know what percentage of cataclysm owners downloaded a digital copy vs. bought in a store, but I would venture to guess that more than half still bought a physical copy. Blizzard would never want to be put in a position like that.

Also, for the standard copy of Diablo III, it would be easy for Blizzard to do what you have described. However, for people who want the CE, it would be a huge headache for Blizzard, retailers, and players to make a digital-only launch a nightmare. It's scaring me to even think about it... *shivers*
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Posts: 222
financially this does NOT make a lot of sense, i'd be going "MFer MFer MFer" all the way to gamestop to debate on cancelling my collectors edition *as pretty much everyone would* because I'd be pissed that I'd be missing the game for a week.
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01/17/2012 01:47 AMPosted by RangerHope
financially this does NOT make a lot of sense, i'd be going "MFer MFer MFer" all the way to gamestop to debate on cancelling my collectors edition *as pretty much everyone would* because I'd be pissed that I'd be missing the game for a week.


^^ Exhibit A - Why it would be a nightmare for players.
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