Blizzard have introduced a Public Test Realm for Warcraft 3, a first for the venerable real-time strategy title.
Blizzard have stated that the PTR is primarily aimed at implementing a bunch of balance changes, in addition to updating assets and several other improvements. It’s poured fuel onto the raging fire of fan speculation that a Warcraft III remake or remaster is on the way, and with Starcraft’s remaster launching later this month, fans are curious about what’s next.
You can read more details in a post on Blizzard’s forums, which also outlines some of the changes the team have made.
Blizzard was hiring for people to work on Warcraft 3 and Diablo II back in June, which planted the seeds of remasters into the community, who seem rather sold on the idea. Whether we’ll get a remaster of Warcraft 3 or whether this PTR is designed to update the original and make a remaster redundant remains to be seen. However, Blizzard's intentions here seem to be clear. There's going to be a new patch for Warcraft 3 at some stage in the future, and this is just the first steps fo that iterative process.
Hell, perhaps we’ll get a remake of The Lost Vikings 2. However, it does raise the question of what exactly Blizzard are hoping to get from updating a 15 year old game that probably doesn't sell too many new copies. Hopefully we'll find out more soon, although it's likely that any further announcements on anything Blizzard related will be at Gamescom next week, where a Blizzard announcement is rumoured, or Blizzcon in November.