Q: Do you need to be connected to Battle.net while you're playing StarCraft II's single-player campaign?
[PR interjection] You don't need to be. There is an offline mode. You will need an initial activation. But there is still an offline mode.
FP: If we've done our job right and implemented Battle.net in a great way people will want to be connected while they're playing the single-player campaign so they can stay connected to their friends on Battle.net and earn the achievements on Battle.net and all that sort of stuff.
Q: Is that the best approach in terms of anti-piracy when it comes to PC gaming?
FP: Absolutely. The best approach from our perspective is to make sure that you've got a full-featured platform that people want to play on, where their friends are, where the community is.
Q: We've seen some aggressive reaction to some other publishers' policies that force players to be connected to the internet while they're playing predominantly single-player games. Your approach, however, seems based on players being attracted to the Battle.net feature set as a reason not to pirate the game.
FP: That's a battle that we have a chance in. If you start talking about DRM and different technologies to try to manage it, it's really a losing battle for us, because the community is always so much larger, and the number of people out there that want to try to counteract that technology, whether it's because they want to pirate the game or just because it's a curiosity for them, is much larger than our development teams. We need our development teams focused on content and cool features, not anti-piracy technology.
Q: I understand new games happen at Blizzard because the development teams want to create them. You mentioned the development team behind StarCraft II wanted to make the game after they finished work on Warcraft III. Now StarCraft II is coming to the end of its development, has the team expressed any ideas about what it wants to work on next?
FP: Yeah. This team in particular definitely has ideas about what they want to do when they're done with the StarCraft II series of products. But they're going to be busy for a while. After Wings of Liberty is Heart of the Swarm, and then the protoss campaign after that. It's going to be a few years before they really have to start thinking about that in earnest.
Q: Is another Warcraft RTS game, perhaps Warcraft IV, a game that won't ever happen because World of Warcraft exists, or is it a game the StarCraft II team may one day decide it would like to make?
FP: I don't think World of Warcraft precludes us from doing another Warcraft real-time strategy game if that's what the development team wants to do.
Q: Blizzard is a PC game developer. Is console development something your development teams are not interested in? Or is console development just not right for Blizzard?
FP: I wouldn't say that either of those are true. There are definitely people on the development teams interested in console development. At Blizzard we're interested in delivering great gaming experiences to our fans. If the platform that makes the most sense is a console then that's where you would see the game.
Q: The RTS is quite difficult to make work on a console.
Q: And again, World of Warcraft, and MMOs in general, are difficult on consoles. Would you suggest a Blizzard console game would have to be something completely different to what you've previously created?
FP: I would say that it would just have to be a game that was developed from the ground up with that in mind. In the same way that, if you like to get the best eSport experience in StarCraft II we developed StarCraft II with that in mind from the beginning.
Q: StarCraft: Ghost is a game that I understand is on hold indefinitely. Is that game completely dead, or is there a chance it could be returned to in the future?
FP: Anything's possible.
Q: Was it a third-person shooter?
FP: Yeah, third-person shooter.
[PR interjection] If you saw the BlizzCon panel last year we showed a third-person shooter using the map editor, where you're following a Ghost around. So maybe someone in the community will make StarCraft: Ghost.