The latest BlizzCon 2018 keynote streamed live on offered fans the opportunity to view everything from an epic two-minute cutscene teaser for the movie adaptation of Diablo to the stage-crashing reveal of World of Warcraft: Legion of Dawn, a new expansion that’s slated to arrive next week. One of the biggest announcements was the title of the next big project Blizzard was working on.

The project, which was announced in a teaser trailer, is called Blizzard Royale, and allows Blizzard’s popular Blizzard game community to get into a real-time online battle royale (read: RTS) for themselves. For Blizzard – one of the most iconic companies in gaming – a round of MMORPGs, MMO-esque RTS’s or MMO-type MMORPG’s is kind of an odd, odd choice.

In a January 2018 article from The Daily Dot, Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime confirmed the shift. “We’re getting into some new areas,” Morhaime told the publication. “That’s not to say we’re stopping everything and saying ‘game over,’ because we love all of those things. But… we’re thinking about some new ways of delivering games to our fans that will be more immersive and offer more replayability and give players a different kind of platform for gameplay. We’re trying to marry all of those things together.”

Last night on Facebook, Blizzard confirmed their latest effort would be dubbed Blizzard Royale, and would be the next game the company is working on.

The game’s “central gameplay mechanic” is a battle royale experience of combat against bots, i.e. not real players, and as with games like Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds, Blizzard Royale will do away with the concept of a “preset” map, with a “shooter-oriented sandbox” of open playable maps. From the trailer, it doesn’t appear that the weapons will be microtranslated to the game’s online mode, or that any skills will be swapped among players, so you can expect it to be a fairly straightforward Battle Royale game, more shooter-y than PUBG.

One of the big aspects of Overwatch that’s unique to Blizzard’s studio is that each game, from Diablo III to World of Warcraft, has a back story that’s tied to the classic game that’s being “released” in the future. With Blizzard Royale, Blizzard has the opportunity to replicate that by making Diablo III a cooperative MOBA, Hearthstone a RTS, or Overwatch a battle royale.

The video below provides an idea of what Blizzard’s mascot, Winston, will look like in this type of world.

Blizzard says the game will roll out to PC, Mac, and the Nintendo Switch over the coming months.

This isn’t the first time Blizzard has launched Battle Royale-style versions of their games. One of the most memorable, and terribly named, Battle Royale experiences came when the Warcraft franchise decided to release an expansion called Warlords of Draenor.

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