WoW players divided after Blizzard acquires Spellbreak dev studio

Brianna Reeves
wow players react to blizzard proletariat acquisition
Activision Blizzard

World of Warcraft players have reacted to the news of Blizzard Entertainment’s Proletariat acquisition, the development studio behind Spellbreak.

A magic-driven battle royale experience, Spellbreak launched in late 2020 on consoles and PC, inviting players to take part in a PvP shooter like no other.

Despite its novel premise and awe-inspiring visuals, the free-to-play title never generated the player base necessary to sustain itself long-term.

Now the Boston-headquartered studio plans to shut down Spellbreak’s servers on an unspecified date in early 2023.

But Blizzard’s newly announced acquisition of Proletariat means the 100-person crew will get to continue building interactive experiences in fantastical worlds.

WoW fans respond to Blizzard’s Proletariat acquisition

Blizzard announces Proletariat acquisition
Proletariat
Spellbreak comes to an end but opportunity knocks for Proletariat.

To bolster World of Warcraft ahead of the Dragonflight expansion, Blizzard will move Proletariat’s 100 developers to the MMORPG’s production team.

Naturally, the WoW community has weighed in on social media, with many hoping the acquisition will inject new ideas into the experience.

Reddit user BCMakoto noted that Blizzard’s purchase could translate to an influx of talent for WoW’s game design, art, and gameplay departments. “It’s actually quite good news for the later stages of [Dragonflight]. I doubt we’ll see much impact in 10.0 and 10.1 due to the onboarding of new staff, but maybe patches afterward can profit from it,” the Redditor surmised.

Similarly, Kittimm hopes staff from a strong company culture will prove advantageous for Blizzard as a whole, writing that “bringing in a company with [a] good standing culture… can really help you change your own ways if you are at all earnest in doing so.”

Though Proletariat has been working with Blizzard since May, there’s no word on how much of the team’s work will be reflected in Dragonflight. As a result, WoW fans like marine72 posit Proletariat’s efforts could prove most noticeable in Dragonflight’s patch content.

blizzard buys spellbreak studio
Activision Blizzard
WoW’s Dragonflight expansion arrives in late 2022.

Some World of Warcraft fans have expressed skepticism about Blizzard Entertainment’s acquisition of Proletariat, though.

The likes of Yourwitchergeralt and HedHunta pointed out how the purchase could serve as a response to the staff exodus from Blizzard. If so, such a move suggests the studio is struggling to recruit new talent organically.

Meanwhile, others like KourteousKrome wonder whether the stream of new team members will push Dragonflight out of its stated release window.

“From my experience in software,” KourteousKrome said, “adding folks this late to a project will just slow everyone down. Think of them as being more support for auxiliary functions rather than core devs for [Dragonflight].”

It stands to reason Proletariat’s contribution to Dragonflight won’t be made readily apparent until after the expansion goes live.

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