Blizzard Entertainment is one of the most prominent names in the gaming industry. Known for creating many classic franchises such as Warcraft, StarCraft, and Diablo, Blizzard titles have been the favorite of many a gamer over the past two decades, and then some.
But though the company may have been the subject of some controversy in recent times (most of it related to politics and microtransactions), this doesn’t change the fact that this company has given us some of the best games ever made.
So, in this article, we’ll go over all the games that Blizzard Entertainment has ever released, starting with some of their lesser-known titles from the early 90s and making our way to the money factories that are their more recent releases.
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The Early Days – Silicon & Synapse
Believe it or not, Blizzard wasn’t always Blizzard. The company was actually founded under the name “Silicon & Synapse” back in 1991. At the very beginning, the company was mostly working on ports, but they also developed three games in this period:
- RPM Racing (1991)
- The Lost Vikings (1992)
- Rock n’ Roll Racing (1993)
RPM Racing was a simple racing game developed for the SNES, and Rock n’ Roll Racing spiced things up with the addition of car-mounted weapons. It was supposed to be a sequel to the first game titled “RPMII” but it was rebranded by the publisher later on. It was also developed for the SNES but was ported to the Sega Genesis and the GameBoy Advance.
As for The Lost Vikings, it is a platformer game that you might have heard of, seeing as it was added to Battle.net in 2014. It features three Vikings who find themselves trapped on an alien spaceship which they must escape, and each Viking has unique abilities necessary for beating each level. It was released on the SNES, the Sega Genesis, Amiga CD32, as well as MS-DOS and AmigaOS. It was also ported to the GBA in 2003.
In 1994, Silicon & Synapse was renamed to “Blizzard Entertainment” due to legal issues, and it was shortly after this that they released several games that would be the inception of their most prominent franchises.
The Death and Return of Superman
Release date: 1994
Platforms: SNES, Sega Genesis
The first game made after the renaming of the company was not what you might expect. It was a game based on DC comics that revolved around Superman, and it was a typical SNES-era beat ‘em up game that was released for the SNES in 1994 and then ported to the Sega Genesis in 1994.
Release date: 1994
Platforms: SNES, Sega X32, MS-DOS, Mac OS, PC-98, GBA
Blackthorne is a platformer/shooting game also released in 1994 for the SNES, and it was ported to a range of other systems over the years. Much like The Lost Vikings, Blackthorne was made available on Battle.net in 2013, and it can be downloaded for free.
Warcraft: Orcs & Humans
Release date: November 23, 1994
Platforms: MS-DOS, Mac OS
Now, we get to the good stuff – the original Warcraft game! Titled simply “Warcraft: Orcs & Humans”, it sets the premise that the future games would be based on: Orcs, a once-peaceful race from the world of Draenor became corrupted and have come to invade Azeroth, a world inhabited by humans.
From a gameplay standpoint, the original Warcraft also set the tone for the later Warcraft games, revolving around melee, ranged, and spellcasting units that need to be managed with some care if the player wants their troops to engage the enemy effectively and efficiently.
Overall, Warcraft: Orcs & Humans placed a big accent of multiplayer and was a very popular and influential game at the time of its release, though it would be overshadowed by its more advanced sequels.
The game was originally released only for the MS-DOS and Mac OS.
Justice League Task Force
Release date: 1995
Platforms: SNES, Sega Genesis
The second and final DC game developed by Blizzard, Justice League Task Force is a fighting game featuring the Justice League members and several villains. Much like The Death and Return of Superman, it was released for the SNES and the Sega Genesis.
Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness
Release date: December 9, 1995
Platforms: MS-DOS, Mac OS, Windows, PlayStation, Sega Saturn
A sequel to the original Warcraft game, Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness is when the franchise truly started gaining momentum. Fundamentally, the game played similarly to the original, but it is in the story department that it truly shined, as it started laying more extensive groundwork for the future games. After the fall of Stormwind in the original game, humans fled to the kingdom of Lordaeron, where the second game takes place.
Tides of Darkness also received an expansion titled Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal, which dealt with the events following the second orc invasion of Azeroth, adding two new campaigns and new multiplayer maps.
Like the original game, Warcraft II was released for the MS-DOS and the Mac OS, but it was also brought to Windows, as well as two consoles: the original PlayStation and the Sega Saturn.
Release date: December 31, 1996
Platforms: Windows, Mac OS, PlayStation
Next, we get to the inception of Blizzard’s second famous franchise – Diablo. The first Diablo game, much like the first Warcraft game, set the foundation for the sequels which would follow in its footsteps.
It is a hack-and-slash isometric action RPG, letting the player assume the role of one of three classic RPG classes – warrior, rogue, and sorcerer. The game’s dungeons are procedurally-generated, so no two levels are the same.
The game was originally developed for Windows, but it was also ported to Mac OS and the PlayStation in 1998, about a year and a half after the original release. It also received an expansion titled Diablo: Hellfire.
The Lost Vikings 2
Release date: February 27, 1997
Platforms: Windows, PlayStation, Sega Saturn, SNES
A sequel to the original game, the Lost Vikings 2 featured a similar puzzle-platformer experience, but with two new Vikings with unique new abilities of their own. The game was originally released for the SNES, like its predecessor, but the PlayStation, Sega Saturn, and PC versions of the game all feature 3D graphics instead of 2D sprites.
Release date: March 31, 1998
Platforms: Windows, Mac OS, Nintendo 64
Next came StarCraft, another extremely influential game that would also be the final new IP introduced by Blizzard for almost the next two decades.
Moving from a fantasy to a sci-fi setting, Starcraft shifts the focus from small, focused groups of units to much larger armies with less micromanagement. It introduces all three of StarCraft’s signature factions: the Terrans (i.e. Humans), the hyper-advanced enigmatic Protoss, and the animalistic hive-mind swarm of the Zerg.
The game was originally released for Windows, followed by Mac OS and Nintendo 64 ports. It also received an expansion called StarCraft: Brood War, and a remastered version of the game was released in 2017.
Release date: June 29, 2000
Platforms: Windows, Mac OS, macOS
After StarCraft, what followed was the sequel to Diablo – Diablo II, and it improved upon the foundation set by the original. It featured better 3D graphics, a more developed story, and more varied environments, making it more difficult for the game to grow stale.
Diablo II also added more gameplay variety, as it introduced several new classes. The base game features the Barbarian, the Paladin, the Necromancer, the Sorceress, and the Amazon. On top of those five, the Druid and the Assassin were added in the expansion titled Diablo II: Lord of Destruction.
Like its predecessor, Diablo II was released for Windows and Mac OS, but it was also ported to the new macOS in 2016.
Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos
Release date: July 3, 2002
Platforms: Windows, Mac OS, macOS
And then came what is probably the most beloved Warcraft game ever made – Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos! The third game ushered in Warcraft’s 3D era, with beautiful graphics and stunning CGI cinematics that were quite something for the time.
Warcraft III spiced things up by adding two new factions: the Night Elves and the Undead, each with their own playstyles. The game also placed a much bigger accent on powerful hero units, which became the very core of each player’s army.
Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne was released a year after the base game, featuring more single-player content and further streamlining the overall gameplay experience. Moreover, a remastered version of the game called Warcraft III: Reforged will be released before the end of 2019. As for the original Warcraft III, it remains playable on Windows, Classic Mac OS, and the new macOS.
World of Warcraft
Release date: November 23, 2004
Platforms: Windows, macOS
Does this one really need any introduction? Released in 2004, World of Warcraft took the world by storm. It was by no means the first MMORPG, but it did quickly become the most popular one which launched the genre into the mainstream spotlight and ushered in the “golden age of MMOs”.
“Vanilla” WoW i.e. the original game, had a good run from 2004 to 2007, but it has received a ton of expansions since then, starting with The Burning Crusade. But while Burning Crusade and Wrath of the Lich King merely built upon and enhanced the original experience, the later expansions – starting with Cataclysm – tweaked and transformed the game beyond recognition.
Indeed, the World of Warcraft that we have today is a far cry from the original, but if you want to see just how the game’s many expansions changed the experience over the years, check out this article.
At this point, World of Warcraft has received a total of seven expansions, with the latest eighth one – Shadowlands – expected to launch in 2020. To this day, the game remains playable only on Windows and macOS.
StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty
Release date: July 27, 2010
Platforms: Windows, macOS
A sequel to the original StarCraft, StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty did what sequels usually do – it offered enhanced graphics, as well as an improved and streamlined gaming experience. Fundamentally, the gameplay remains largely unchanged, still revolving around the three core races from the original.
The base game, however, only features a Terran single-player campaign, while the Zerg and Protoss campaigns were only added later on in the Heart of the Swarm and the Legacy of the Void expansions respectively. Moreover, as of 2017, the base StarCraft II game was made free-to-play by Blizzard, though the extra expansion and DLC content still needs to be purchased as usual.
StarCraft II is playable only on Windows and macOS.
Release date: May 15, 2012
Platforms: Windows, macOS, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
A long-awaited sequel to Diablo II finally came after a 12-year gap in the form of Diablo III. Again, Diablo III did what sequels do best – it introduced Diablo to a new generation of gamers and a new generation of consoles, bringing better graphics and an array of new challenges to overcome.
Once again, the core experience remained largely unchanged. The game featured a total of seven classes, some new and some returning: Barbarian, Wizard, Witch-Doctor, Monk, Demon Hunter, Crusader, and Necromancer. The last two were added in the Reaper of Souls and Rise of the Necromancer expansions respectively.
But unlike the previous game, Diablo III is playable on a wide range of systems. Originally, it was released for Windows and macOS in 2012, then for the PS3 and the Xbox 360 in 2013, and then again, a year later for the PS4 and the Xbox One. Finally, it was also brought to the Nintendo Switch in 2018.
Release date: March 11, 2014
Platforms: Windows, macOS, iOS, Android
Moving on, we get to something completely different. In 2014, Blizzard released Hearthstone, a Warcraft game that turned out to be a highly addictive trading card game. Hearthstone is obviously heavily influenced by Magic: The Gathering and other similar games, though it is somewhat simpler and more fast-paced.
The game lets the player pick one of the nine WoW classes, each represented by a character from Warcraft lore, to use as their avatar, and each class/character has a unique ability that can be used during the game. Naturally, Hearthstone features both a single-player and multiple multiplayer modes.
The game was originally released for Windows and macOS, but it was quickly brought to iOS and Android devices, too, allowing fans to enjoy the game on mobile devices.
Heroes of the Storm
Release date: June 2, 2015
Platforms: Windows, macOS
After the release of Hearthstone, Blizzard wasn’t done taking advantage of other trends in the gaming industry, and so we saw Heroes of the Storm come out in 2015. This free-to-play MOBA game featured characters from all of Blizzard’s major IPs: Warcraft, StarCraft, Diablo, and later on, Overwatch, too.
Heroes of the Storm is playable only on Windows and macOS.
Release date: May 24, 2016
Platforms: Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
What would you get if you combined Team Fortress 2 with a MOBA? The end result would probably be Overwatch, Blizzard’s first new IP since the original StarCraft that came out in 1998.
That said, Overwatch is another insanely popular phenomenon that we’re sure needs no introduction. It is a multiplayer-only game that features a variety of heroes with different abilities, combining elements of FPS, RPG, and MOBA games that go quite well together.
Overwatch was initially launched for Windows, as well as the PS4 and Xbox One consoles, with the Switch version having been launched more recently in October 2019.
Blizzard is by no means done releasing new games – by “new games”, we mean mostly sequels and spin-offs. And it just so happens that they have several projects lined up, though none of them have a release date just yet.
Platforms: iOS, Android
One of the several recent Blizzard controversies was the announcement of Diablo Immortal at Blizzcon 2018, when many fans were disappointed with the news that the new Diablo title would be a mobile-only game.
We don’t know much about Diablo Immortal at this point, but we do know that it will feature six classes: Barbarian, Wizard, Monk, Necromancer, Demon Hunter, and Crusader. Naturally, it won’t be nearly as complex as any of the Diablo games that were released for the PC and the home consoles, but it remains to be seen how it will fare in the end.
The sequel to Overwatch will feature an updated engine, updated character models, and it will not be a mandatory upgrade, as those playing the original Overwatch will be able to engage in multiplayer matches with those playing Overwatch 2.
In addition to graphics updates, Overwatch 2 will feature several new heroes, as well as two new PvE modes: a cooperative wave defense mode and a single-player story mode which will explore heroes’ backstories.
It has not been confirmed as to which platforms Overwatch 2 will be playable on, but we can assume that it will be released for Windows, the PlayStation 4, the Xbox One, and the Nintendo Switch, plus the PlayStation 5 and the new Xbox.
And finally, we have the full-fledged sequel to Diablo III, and it’s Diablo IV. The game was only just announced at Blizzcon 2019, though judging by what the devs have to say, it will be a few years before the game is out.
You can read a full article regarding Diablo IV news and rumors here.
And those would be all the games that Blizzard has released so far, plus a couple more that are yet to be released further down the road. We will update the article as new games are announced and released, and in the meantime, if you feel that we’ve skipped anything important or made any errors, feel free to let us know in the comments and we’ll see about fixing the article ASAP.