Update: Team Titan Timeline

Posted by Daeity On Thursday, November 10, 2011

As we all know, Drysc (aka Bashiok) first "officially" referenced Blizzard's Next Gen MMO on December 2007 (while recruiting had put out job postings during the previous April.)

"No, it is an unannounced next-gen MMO," said the rep. "And that doesn't mean an expansion for World of Warcraft either."
Sam "Slouken" Lantinga was hired as a technical lead "on a small unannounced project that was getting underway" in January 2009.

He never mentioned "next gen MMO" or "Titan" of course, but the next mystery "Untitled Project" was rumored to have started in 2009 as well.

During March 2009, Sam mentioned on his blog that he started hiring for the most urgent engineering positions.

On March 9, 2009, Sam posted on the SDL Mailing List that he was the Engineering Lead on a new Unannounced Project, and that they were looking for developers.
Hey guys, I'm engineering lead on a brand new unannounced project and we just opened two positions:
http://www.blizzard.com/us/jobopp/programmer-client-software-engineer.html
http://www.blizzard.com/us/jobopp/programmer-software-engineer-gameplay.html

We're using the WoW engine at the moment, and it doesn't use SDL, but if you have experience in the industry and are interested, I'd love to see your resume.

Please follow the instructions on the job postings if you want to apply.

See ya!
-Sam Lantinga, Lead Software Engineer, Blizzard Entertainment
This indicates that the project he was working on was the other mystery project.

However, on March 6 2009, the Client Software Engineer job position was for for "an unannounced next-generation MMO." It changed to "unannounced title" by or before March 21.

On March 10 2009, the Software Engineer Gameplay also changed to "an unannounced title" even though it showed "Next Gen MMO" for a couple days after March 6. :)

The mystery "Unannounced Title" game was not discovered by news media on the job boards until March 22 2009 when it no longer referred to the "Next Gen MMO."

And finally, Sam Lantinga's resume (previously sourced here) claimed that he started work on this project in January of 2008 (and the blog said that work didn't pick up pace until 2009). January 2008 was the right time for Titan, and the Untitled Project didn't start until 2009.

So, was it another iteration of Titan (like I've mentioned in the past) or the actual "mystery" Untitled Project?

Thankfully, we've received an official confirmation from Michael Sacco!
Like this post http://daeity.blogspot.com/2011/10/team-titan-timeline-and-tribulations.html that extrapolates Sam's work on a "small project" to be Titan. He was not working on Titan. It's false.
Sacco is a Writer and Editor for Joystiq.com, a former Blizzard employee, and someone who has internal sources and connections within Blizzard. So, this is definitely a very reliable source of information on Blizzard's secret projects.

He has confirmed for us that Sam "Slouken" Lantinga was working on the other mystery "Untitled Project", so we now know that Sam's blog is confirmed, the information is true (no longer a rumor), we know it's timeline, how far along it is, problems they have been experiencing, that they used the WOW engine as the prototype, and we know a great deal more information thanks to our new Blizzard source. :)

Sacco has also confirmed that Sam's resume (which he updated after leaving Blizzard) is incorrect. Even though it said he started on the Mystery Project in January 2008 (which indicates Titan), it was in fact January 2009 (according to Sacco) which would change the project from Titan to the other "Mystery 5th Project". So, Sacco is essentially confirming that his work must be on the upcoming World of Warcraft online card game. Apparently, it has been in development for a lot longer than I expected.

(Can't wait to find out what more he is going to share with us about Blizzard's secret projects. Thanks Mikey!)

Who would have thought that Joystiq would create a rumor mongering post about Blizzard layoffs, then try to scapegoat the entire affair onto a much smaller blog, only to turn around later and give them a wealth information on Blizzard's mystery game by confirming a rumor. Must be karma.