Wednesday while writing a report that StarCraft 2 modder Ryan Winzen was creating an unofficial MMORPG based on the StarCraft universe, Activision requested that YouTube remove the sample videos, claiming copyright infringement. It was a surprising move given that other StarCraft 2 videos reside on Google’s popular video website, leading us to wonder if a possible MMORPG is in the works over at Blizzard.
"The Deputy General Council from Blizzard contacted me last night to discuss the details of the 'World of Starcraft' project," Winzen said on Wednesday. "We talked for a while and apparently some people from Blizzard were concerned I was developing the game somehow outside of SC2. Anyways I explained the details of the project to him and made it clear this mod was to be developed within SC2."
He went on to reveal an interesting little tidbit. "After that was clear he obviously wanted the name to be changed," he added. "I'm trying to work with him to get the name StarCraft Universe (currently in holding by Mille25) or StarCraft Chronicles. I am fully respectful of Blizzard's Intellectual property, and they DO in fact own a copyright on 'World of StarCraft' and have EVERY RIGHT to do what they did. If I want to continue this project I'm at the mercy of Blizzard's good graces since they OWN it all."
At this point, the MMORPG still looks to be alive and kicking as long as it remains within StarCraft II and doesn't use the World of StarCraft name. However, despite whether the mod lives or dies, the project and accompanying attention from Activision Blizzard has caught the eye of game developer/publisher Riot Games (League of Legends).
"When I see a modder with a lot of drive that has done something cool, I tend to contact them," said Zileas, Design Director of Riot Games. "I shot him an email recently asking if he was interested in exploring an opportunity here. As to what comes of that, who knows -- that depends on the mutual fit and his own goals."
Winzen said that the developer contacted him for a potential position in game design. "I'm not special though I will have to go through the application process and testing like everyone else, and this is not a 100-percent guaranteed thing, and I'm not exactly sure what I'm going to do at the moment," he admitted. "There's a lot going on outside of what I've even mentioned here."
As of Thursday the World of StarCraft demo video had reappeared on YouTube, as seen below. Currently the mod is in a pre-alpha stage. When completed, it will require Battle.net to function, Winzen said.