Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Dialogue with WoW devs

I was at the Stratics WoW dialogue today, albeit being 15mins~ late. There were some good questions, but most were unnecessary (lol lore) or out-right dumb. If this is the first time you're reading a WoW dialogue (Stratics have had a few), the questions are taken and chosen before the session and posited real-time to the WoW developers. The channel (#StraticsHoC) was fully moderated, so only the ops and voices can speak. This session had around 2800 users in the channel. I was also concurrently in the #worldofwarcraft channel, listening and participating in the on-going discussion about the QnA. It was relativey funny, and very spammy anyhow. The entire dialogue lasted 90mins~

I'm going to paste some of the good questions or funny moments so have fun reading.

[06:18:00] *JamesVZ* Given the almost silly amount of what most people would consider 'useless' socket bonuses, are there plans to rework the socket system or otherwise make it more appealing? Did the socket system live up to the designer's expectations?
[06:19:14] I think we've learned quite a bit about itemizing the socket bonuses in a way that they aren't ignored. However, it is intended that the bonus be simply an incentive to match the sockets, not a mandate.
[06:19:48] However, I do think the socketing system has provided players with some great customization choices that that wouldn't otherwise exist.

[06:21:12] *Kelyas* Any plans for more world wide events such as Naxxramas, or the horrid AQ40 opening?
[06:21:27] Well if I answer yes is that a good or bad thing?
[06:21:30] =P
[06:21:38] YES, we plan to do more World Events
[06:21:49] NO! They won't be *horrid*

[06:27:55] *lizarb* One major complaint healers/tanks have is that they can not grind very well. Have you ever considered letting people have 2 specs they could swap freely between? Like the weapon swap in diablo 2. Having respec cost simply cost alot of people off from trying strange builds/tatics.
[06:28:44] Well, it's a bit different conceptually than a diablo 2 weapon swap. There aren't any plans to give players multiple specs, since that really kind of defeats the purpose of having to "choose" a spec.
[06:29:36] However, where necessary we'll add grind power to trees/specs that traditionally have a hard time in those areas. In some ways I do believe that some of the specs have gotten overspecialized over time.

[06:29:47] *Tesurly* Are the harsh keying requirements for entry level->end game raid zones going to stay for future expansions, or will some sort of backflagging option be available?
[06:30:32] First off, players will be happy to know that there are some *limited* backflagging solutions going into the game tomorrow. It's not for all zones but for a select few.
[06:30:45] omg patch tomorrow
[06:31:00] omg!
[06:31:10] Regarding the keying process, I think a certain amount of keying is cool... it allows for guilds to separate each other from one another.
[06:31:15] jeff is so fired...
[06:31:38] Most of the keying issues have become issues more because of tuning.
[06:31:49] The Karazhan key isn't terribly hard to obtain.
[06:32:00] btw
[06:32:01] Patch tomorrow =P

[06:32:35] *Krom* What sort of "average weekly time investment" do you design the end-game around? How do you determine how much time should be spent on gear acquisition, consumable farming, assisting guildmates, etc.? On that note, how "organized" do you intend for the average raiding guild to be?
[06:32:59] Personally I intend the average guild be |---------------------------------| organized (but no more or less than that)
[06:33:36] It's not so much that we design around an "average weekly time investment". We more look at having a big suite of things to do at any point in the game, whether you raid or pvp or do 5 mans or solo...
[06:34:16] I think a lot of raiders LIKE to feel useful outside of raiding -- doing 5 mans, pvp etc. When it goes too far (herb farming for example -- it's no longer fun.
[06:34:50] We hope to reduce the tedious elements and focus more on end game PvE fun for the average WoW raider.
[06:34:58] Not sure if that answers the question

[06:35:12] *little3* Retribution specced paladins are not seen as a viable raid choice as their DPS is 'low' and the support they bring could easily be done by another DPS class. Will retribution be made into a viable end-game raiding spec through either DPS increases or support increases?
[06:35:47] but then who will save the hunters, kalgan?
[06:35:48] Yes, I'd like to see ret become a bit more raid viable in terms of dps and overall utility.
[06:37:00] Right. At any rate, something we've noticed in our testing is that ret pallies are in kind of a jam where their dps isn't enough to get the put in a dps group in a raid.
[06:37:10] ... which makes their dps suffer even more.
[06:37:39] Hopefully we can get that solved in a way that doesn't cause ret pallies to rule the pvp universe.

[06:40:11] *skim-* Arena matches are becoming longer and longer as teams are gaining more cheap stamina and resilience, while mana is still relatively expensive. In future I can see non-mana classes takeing the definite upper hand as they can continue doing their task forever, unlike casters. How do you see this situation evolving and are there any plans to counter it?
[06:40:55] Well, at least the fights aren't getting shorter with gear progression like they were at level 60 right? =]
[06:41:21] One thing we've done in patch 2.1 is make water available through the honor system that players can drink in the arenas.
[06:41:33] Spam that drink button!

[06:46:38] *[DW]Ataxus* Are the developers actively evaluating the 10% Mage coefficient nerf? Also, please explain why it was implemented and why it is still in place. Many Mages aren't fully aware of this issue and it doesn't appear within the Improved Fireball/Frostbolt talents themselves.
[06:47:46] I can't say we're really actively evaluating it at this point. Melee classes are only starting to approach where they should be in terms of damage output relative to mages, so we don't expect to make fireball/frostbolt do more damage right now.
[06:48:54] The reason we don't put it in the tooltip is that bonus coefficients are already a very hidden and expert game mechanic. We don't want every new mage totally mystified by excessively nerdy information in the tooltip.

[06:59:54] *Toes* I've noticed that items from the new instances have new features such as Ignore Armor and Haste rating, what other effects are being introduced in addition to these?
[07:00:47] Yes, we have introduced a few new item effects. That's all we plan to introduce for tier 6 though.

[07:01:29] *max* Can we expect to see more raid bosses similar to the chess event in Karazhan where the entire raid can avoid dying/having to repair on a failure? As a followup, I think this was a great idea but it seemed like an implementation that was rushed; was the chess event as we see it today the same as it was in planning?
[07:01:42] The chess event was very unique
[07:01:56] We'd like to do more stuff like that but it takes a tremendous amount of time
[07:02:25] Before planning any raid encounter we discuss how hard/easy it should be based on it's relative placement and complexity within a raid
[07:02:40] We saw the chess event as more of a Reward for just getting there
[07:03:11] The trick with the Chess encounter is that it would be extremely easy to make the event overpowered and unbeatable
[07:03:24] We wanted to err on the side of having it feel like a bonus
[07:03:30] There are some changes to the event coming
[07:03:35] Medivh will use the fire cheat more
[07:04:00] but when all is said and done, it's just a fun, rewarding *intermission* event for the raid
[07:04:10] enjoy your free king's defender

[07:08:41] *Cyrex* Have you guys looked into possibly bringing life to WoW? what i mean by this is, Have you considered monthly story driven events which are controlled by GM's? ex. Invasions, war efforts, city defense?
[07:10:07] We try to have our events unfold either by players or at the hands of the designers. The game is extremely large and in many countries. Quality of play experience is absolutely king for us. I'm not sure the events would be of the quality that players have come to expect if they were being run on an individual basis
[07:10:46] Our GM's are extremely talented but we count on them for their customer service skills

[07:17:16] *Warder* With the current status of raid progression and the corresponding attunements, it is becoming more and more clear to many people that their chances of beating (or even seeing) Black Temple or Hyjal before the next expansion is out are quite low. Only the most hardcore of the hardcore, even among raiders, seem to be making significant progress. Are there any plans to making BC raiding somewhat less unforgivable
[07:17:29] Yes
[07:17:29] Tomorrow
[07:17:32] first thing in the morning
[07:18:12] 2.1.0 will go live and I think there are *many* significant changes to help with raid progression issues. If raid progression is still a problem after 2.1.0, we'll make further changes
[07:18:17] we WANT people doing the content
[07:18:23] we want the encounters to get beat
[07:18:40] i'd rather have fun, beaten encounters then a raid game full of mysteries that no one is going to see
[07:18:50] plus all your epics are getting a big buff tomorrow
[07:18:56] if all that fails
[07:19:05] there's always STARCRAFT 2 zomg?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

indeed. there's always starcraft 2 zomg. at least in starcraft 2, everyone can beat up bosses without a guild, any attunements or tedious grindings.
- fking tauren