It already lies at the heart of PC hits such as World of Warcraft and Starcraft II, and now it looks as if Blizzard’s online network Battle.net could in future be integrated into leading Activision products such as Call of Duty.
“I'll tell you this – Bobby Kotick and all the folks at Activision are very supportive of Battle.net and what we're doing,” Battle.net project director Greg Canessa told Gamasutra.
“[Activision has] said that Battle.net is one of the top five strategic initiatives going on at Activision Blizzard. Having said that, Blizzard and Activision really are two separate entities, and we really do our own thing.”
The speculation is not without substance, either. In June Kotick admitted that if he were given one wish he “would have Call of Duty be an online subscription service tomorrow”.
And of course there’s still the widely held belief that Activision plans to introduce some sort of premium paid-for element to the series’ multiplayer offer, though with the release of Black Ops now so close this is looking increasingly less likely. For now, at least.
“Today, [the focus is] Blizzard games, and making sure Diablo III is a kick-ass online experience, and making sure we evolve and add features of StarCraft II, make sure that WoW kicks ass for Cataclysm and beyond,” Canessa added.
“Someday, maybe we add other titles in there, who knows. When we really feel like we've delivered that great set of experiences for Blizzard games, and we feel that we've grown the team... when I've got that sustainability, when we really feel like we've got that dialed in and nailed down, who knows what the future holds.”