20 Years of Blizzard: Looking back with Blizzard's creators

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Joeyray Hall and Pat Wyatt join Anderson for some NES action

PCG: What do you think is the biggest effect that Blizzard has had, or will have, on the gaming industry?

RP: I think the effect we’re on the verge of having—at least for WoW specifically—is that right now, gaming is on the edge of not being the basement-geek entertainment anymore.

FP: I wouldn’t say that WoW did it exclusively, but it certainly contributed to the acceptance of gaming in the mainstream population.

RP: Of course, we had the South Park episode that makes fun of it in the opposite direction, but the reason that South Park was interested is because it’s such a big deal to so many people.
It would be great if gaming could get to that place where it’s just another activity; where there’s no looking down your nose at someone who plays games.

MM: Nobody identifies themselves as a “TV-watcher” or “music-listener.” They’re just people. People listen to music, people watch TV. Pretty much everyone does, and a lot of people play games.

FP: One thing that’s great for us: when we’re at Blizzcon, we get to see this huge cross-section of people and realize that it is coming to fruition.

Boombox, check. Apple, check. Casual pose, check. Barton's ready.

PCG: Speaking of Blizzcon, what’s it like to have a company band that can play at events like that?

MM: It’s pretty awesome. It’s a lot of work—we practice a lot before a show—but I think, for me, it’s the fantasy of being a rock star and playing in front of a live audience. It’s pretty awesome that I get to live out that rock star fantasy.

FP: Yeah, but you’re in a bit of a decline. Your most recent gig was in an electronic store parking lot. [The band played at the official Cataclysm launch party outside of Fry’s Electronics in Fountain Valley, CA.]

MM: But, Frank, we were headlining that parking lot.

FP: But if you had to choose between headlining a parking lot or opening for Ozzy or Tenacious D?

MM: You gotta start somewhere.

Morhaime, fresh out of college, ready to make some games

PCG: Does the band play for company parties?

MM: No.

RP: They go off and win our battle of the bands contests.

FP: They cheat.

MM: Cheat?! What was that about cheating?

FP: How many times did you win Battle of the Bands? Oh wait, its subjective judging!

RP: They changed the rules so it allowed them to win.

MM: We changed the rules to make it harder for us to win, and we still win!

RP: We put up a big stage in the middle of the courtyard so people can be in Guitar Hero bands and they get judged.

Morhaime with fellow co-founder and Blizzard tough guy Allen Adham

PCG: Do you go by the same band name, “Level 80 Elite Tauren Chieftain?”

MM: We call ourselves Zergling Rush.


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