Tom Chilton headed Blizzard’s World of Warcraft for 13 years. For two years, he’s been leading a super secret project that is drastically different from anything Blizzard has ever done.
Speaking with GamesBeat, J. Allen Brack, Blizzard Entertainment’s new president, told Dean Takahashi that Chilton is working on a passion project. From the sounds of it, this project has been in the works for a very long time. “He and I started up a new project that was not something like Blizzard has ever done before.”
Unfortunately, Brack didn’t go into details as to what this game could be and Takahashi didn’t ask. We do know that whatever it is, Chilton “plays that genre of game very deeply.” He understands it, he’s excited about it, and we want to help him do that.
What, then could it be? In October 2016, Chilton announced his departure from the World of Warcraft team to work on another project. Two years later, he has still given no hints about the new project that he’s working on just down the hall from his old World of Warcraft team. So what could this project be?
At Blizzcon 2017, Blizzard announced Classic World of Warcraft servers were in the works. While it’s possible Tom Chilton could be working on this project, but also unlikely. World of Warcraft Classic is something Chilton has done—World of Warcraft from the beginning. And we know, from Brack’s interview with GamesBeat that not only is Chilton not working on WoW, he’s working on something totally different than Blizzard has every done.
Chilton came to Blizzard in early 2004 to work on World of Warcraft. Prior to Blizzard, he worked on Origin System’s Ultima Online franchise. It’s possible Chilton could be working on developing another game that puts a new spin on MMOs. Brack did say that Chilton “plays the genre very deeply.” In 2010, when Ian Hamilton of the The Orange County Register asked Chilton if he was working on the next MMO, he said “I have been contributing to that project for many years now, but it isn’t anything we can discuss in any detail.”
What do you think Tom Chilton is working on? Do you think we’ll have any updates about this project during Blizzcon 2018?