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Blizzard Battle.net: A screenplay by Pip

Blizzard Battle.net

FADE IN:

INT. BLIZZARD’S BOARDROOM – LUNCH, SEPTEMBER 2016
People in suits are playing with executive desk toys. One is batting a Newton’s Cradle with her paw while another bobs her head in time with the motions of a drinking bird. Suddenly CRADLE EXEC sits up.

CRADLE EXEC:
We could…… rebrand…. something?

All activity ceases and there is a moment of silence before excited whispering sets in.BIRD EXEC:
Does anything need rebranding?

CRADLE EXEC stares at her coldly until BIRD EXEC drops her gaze and concedes. Her tail is no longer wagging and her ears are lying flat.

CRADLE EXEC:
Anyway. What about that Battle.net thing. Nobody says .net anymore. We might as well still be spelling out the double U double U double U bit of the website.

BIRD EXEC:
What about Blizz.biz? WoW.woo! Zeratul dot… edu?

CRADLE EXEC:
Those are idiotic. No-one cares about top-level domains anymore. People are all “TLD? WHAT IS TLD? TOO LONG DIDN’T… EVEN FINISH THE ACRONYM” and that’s a fact.

BIRD EXEC cringes and fetches favourite toys to placate CRADLE EXEC. A DEVELOPER who has wandered into the boardroom thinking it was the canteen raises their hand.

DEVELOPER:
Uh, what would actually be changing about Battle.net?

CRADLE EXEC:
NOTHING. That’s the beauty of this. All the fun of zhuzhing up the service and reprinting all of our official documents without any of the fuss of developers complaining that we are interrupting their roadmaps and their sandwich schedules.

DEVELOPER:
And these sandwiches you mention…

The mood of the room changes as the assembled executives realise a DEVELOPER has stumbled into their midst. Hissing and shrieking they chase the DEVELOPER from the room. One takes a casual swipe at the retreating figure from his vantage point on top of a wardrobe.

CUT TO:

INT. BOARDROOM – SIX MONTHS LATER
The execs are clustered around a bank of monitors each of which is showing a different stream of information. They paw at the screens every now and again. One is curled up under the table, having a nap.

BIRD EXEC:
There! That person is using our words! “Blizzard Streaming!”

Everyone turns to the screen she is pointing at.

CRADLE EXEC:
They are tweeting about their eyes streaming in a snowstorm.

BIRD EXEC starts to make whining noises and pulls a blanket over herself in sadness.

WARDROBE EXEC:
Wait! An actual person is talking about videogame and they’re saying Blizzard Voice and it’s even… oh no it’s sarcasm. They’re doing a sarcasm.

DEVELOPER:
Do you think that at least part of the problem might be that the website is still Battle.net and that the service is still Battle.net and that everyone knows what you mean when you say Battle.net?

CRADLE EXEC:
GET OUT WE HAVE NO SANDWICHES THIS IS A VERY IMPORTANT MEETING.

DEVELOPER:
Why is that guy peeing in the corner on that potted plant?

CRADLE EXEC:
OUR WAYS ARE NOT YOUR WAYS.

BIRD EXEC raises her hackles and growls at the DEVELOPER forcing them to back slowly out of the room.

CUT TO:

INT. BOARDROOM – AUGUST 14, 2017

The monitors are now in a heap on the floor, having clearly been smashed in fits of pique. The corner plant is dead and the execs are sprawled over furniture. The Newton’s cradle is tangled beyond repair and the drinking bird is on its side. BIRD EXEC slowly raises her head from her paws.

BIRD EXEC:
What if…. we…….. rebrand… back to Battle.net?

CRADLE EXEC cocks her head to the side. She’s listening but wary.

CRADLE EXEC:
I am listening but wary.

BIRD EXEC:
Like, that’s a double rebrand so that makes it a double success, right? We can send out a press blast to say we are REMAINING as Battle.net and everyone will be pleased and we can have treats and a walk!

CRADLE EXEC:
That is idiotic. It’s like the double negative of the marketing world.

BIRD EXEC cowers in the corner.

CRADLE EXEC:
But I now have an entirely different and good idea! Let us double rebrand as BLIZZARD BATTLE.NET! Then we can say that when people are all “Battle.net this” and “Battle.net that” they are secretly abbreviating the new name and not using the old name EVEN IF THEY DON’T KNOW IT THEMSELVES!

DEVELOPER:
You could also make a cheeky nod to the fact that Blizzard used to be called something else before it was Blizzard in your press release.

CRADLE EXEC:
How do you keep getting in here?

DEVELOPER:
The BIRD EXEC flap in the door is pretty big.

CRADLE EXEC throws a sandwich out through the flap and the DEVELOPER chases after it. CRADLE EXEC pushes a chair in front of the gigantic flap to block re-entry.

CRADLE EXEC:
Release the press release and let it be known that we will wisely be double rebranding AND that we were really mindful of community feedback as we did this. Do we have a magnanimous font? We should use that.

FREEZE FRAME on the execs laughing and high-fiving.

FADE TO:

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Philippa Warr

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