Diablo Immortal became infamous when Blizzard’s Wyatt Cheng dropped the gem which was, “Don’t you have a phone?” This was in response to a hostile Blizzcon crowd that wasn’t happy with its mobile exclusivity. Even though the developers downplayed the role a PC port would have, it turns out they were wrong. At least that’s how Blizzard feels now, as it’s confirmed that Diablo Immortal will launch on PC. An open beta for the PC version is scheduled for June 2.
However, the reason for the complete reversal is probably not what you expected. According to a new developer blog post, the deciding factor that encouraged Blizzard to launch Diablo Immortal on PC it was the fear of emulation. Specifically, Blizzard thinks that even if it doesn’t release a PC port, fans will emulate Immortal anyway. Rather than letting its fan base settle for an unoptimized emulation, developing an official version was seen as the best option.
Interestingly, Blizzard explained why Diablo Immortal was not originally going to launch on PC. He said he didn’t think he would “do the title justice by releasing a game originally designed for mobile on PC”. It’s an understandable argument given some of the industry’s past attempts to port mobile games to PC.
Even so, it’s nice to see that Blizzard has gone ahead with a PC version. Diablo has always been a PC-focused franchise, so it didn’t seem right for PC gamers to miss it. The option to enjoy the game on mobile is still there, but those who want to play on a more powerful machine now have a choice. More Immortal will feature cross-play and cross-progression so players are free to switch between devices at will.
Make Immortal PC Compatible
Make a game of ImmortalPC-compatible scaling is a bigger job than it looks. Blizzard highlights how many features had to be implemented to make porting easier. This includes mouse and keyboard controls, custom hotkeys, controller support, a HUD redesign, new menus, and a fully functional chat system.