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The Instance Live! Panel Recap BlizzCon 2017
06/11/2017 à 07:30
World of Warcraft podcast
did a live episode panel at BlizzCon 2017! Their guest was World of Warcraft Art Director Chris Robinson. We've got the info from that panel right here for you!
BlizzCon 2017 Coverage
This Article is part of our
BlizzCon 2017 Coverage
If you are interested in knowing more about Battle for Azeroth Interviews, check one of the articles below
Battle for Azeroth Developer Interview with Perculia and Panser
Interview Reveals the Future of Titanforging and Legendaries
Island Expeditions Interview
Battle for Azeroth Interview Roundup
You can also see our full coverage in our
Q: Do you still "get the good feelings" etc?
A: I was in love with Battle for Azeroth 10 versions ago. Feels so good to see it at BlizzCon on the big screen, makes you feel feelings.
Q: How was it to see the reactions?
A: Mostly just feeling the energy of people watching the cinematic. Feels great.
Q: We loved the Horde feelings! Was hoping for Alliance equivalent and guess what, that Mass Rez from Anduin was just so amazing - what was the work that went into Anduin?
A: We had lots of discussions about how old Anduin actually is, and that he's going through a grieving process but also has to be a king now.
Q: You captured the expressions of "Stepping up" so well!
A: We captured the moment he realizes he has to follow his own path. We like how the community has matured so similarly to the characters - it's now character driven, with complex characters, without the bombastic big thing.
Q: It was cool to see the old cinematic hold up as well as how far we've come.
A: The classic cinematic definitely draws tears. The classic server cinematic was like watching your life go backwards before your eyes!
Q: We noticed a more artistic approach to the zones, almost like a painting, straight from concept art to in game art more fluidly.
A: Some technical things have changed, including view distance fogging. It used to be equal all 360 degrees but now we have lowline fog - new tech. This seems super minor but it's a visual queue in movies that we're used to! No we can do that. Other small steps like that build to the bigger picture. The art team is now almost 100 people and lots of them grew up playing WoW. So they bring a whole thing to that as well and it's not the vision of one person - the team is "the visionary" - it's the people who make it, the thousands of people who support it, the communal passion is tangible.
Q: Art versus Tech?
A: We all do "Gameplay first" for sure but even that is important in the art department. At Blizzard, it's definitely super creative and collaborative. It's tangible.
Q: What kind of discussions happen?
A: We weren't going to put tails on Vulpera originally but adding a tail became a big deal because of animation, testing, 1000s of hours, etc. We debated everything about that.
Q: Do you have approval on Kul Tiras? Do they build it and then show you?
A: Nah I have an easy approval job - they know the game inside and out, they live and breathe it, often it's just beautiful already! Sometimes some colour tweaks, or PhotoShop brush sharing - we definitely work together.
Q: Where's the inspiration for the new Horde zones?
A: We've had a shift in how we create zones, we're trying to make it way more fluid between zones. Visually distinct but we wanted it to be less awkward when you go from zone to zone. We wanted to think about how culture impacts environment and vice versa i.e. trolls naturally have ruins but let's reverse engineer that and take things we know to be Troll but show the empire at it's height (Dinosaurs!). We definitely jam on the lives of NPCs for hours to build up the zones.
Q: Are things ahead of schedule?
A: We're on schedule, I hope! As the team grows, the production team grows - also they are the ones who have to be flexible when art changes, they "herd the cats" so to speak. We were very happy to have a polished level here at BlizzCon.
Q: How did you like the Legion schedule? Are those timelines stressful?
A: Similar, we're learning from the cadence of things. Also we're learning and scoping to the way patches go now - good for balancing content versus deadlines.
Q: What's the scoop on the randomness of Island Expeditions?
A: It's not always going to be different, there's different levels but we like telling a story visually and artistically to help support the design of lots of difference experiences. We like telling you how to do things with art and visuals, not just words. We want to artistically show you what's important.
Q: Are the islands themed?
A: Not specifically- we played around a lot with it and even to the point where we made too many and had to get the designers to stop!
Q: Re-scaled old zones getting updates or just level changes?
A: It's a slippery slope- I don't want to say we're changing things because it could gout of hand but it's polarizing as well. An example is, if we make a new boar and it looks cool, we might put the new boar into the old zones. But re-envisioning through a whole new environment for old zones? Probably not.
Q: Will the art department be related to the classic servers?
A: No idea yet, too soon.
Q: Favorite Allied Race you worked on?
A: I'm Horde at heart! I love the Highmountain Tauren but I do love everything equally!
Q: Why those instead of Taunka at release?
A: Relevancy to current story line. Plus Antlers are cool.
Q: What's going on with burning Teldrassil?
A: It's a huge deal and we have plans, it's going to look good but you have to break some eggs. It had to be serious.
Q: The cinematic seemed quite dark. Can you talk to us about aesthetics?
A: Every expansion is unique and every expansion we discuss how far we want to push the style of the cinematic onto the game. We agreed that the cinematic and game need to be gritty - Varian just died! We were able to pull stuff off in the cinematic to that end to plant the emotional seed which you see play out in game. We took some inspiration from LotR for the Sylvannas portions of the cinematic but we wanted some edge for her. We then realized we could introduce a new ability for her, i.e. a new ultimate for her.
Q: Do you miss Chris Metzen?
A: Yes, I respect him immensely and took me under his wing and helped me grow. He and the other guys set the course and we are working to that.
Q: How do you maintain consistency with changes on the WoW team?
A: We care deeply about succession and training, and that also fosters diversity. We don't just bring in replacements but people with different view points and that drives things from creative levels to engineering levels.
Battle for Azeroth at BlizzCon 2017
Here's a roundup to all of Wowhead's Battle for Azeroth BlizzCon coverage, for easy navigation!
Battle for Azeroth,
World of Warcraft's next expansion was revealed
are being added in the expansion with custom appearances and special Heritage Armor sets.
previewed the Lightforged Draenei and Highmountain Tauren
races on the show floor.
can be druids!
Two dungeons were available and their
Dungeon Journal was available
in the demo.
Design a Dungeon Boss
panel also highlighted the Shrine of the Storm Dungeon.
The demo contained
from every class, but specifically tanks.
We also found that
are returning in the expansion, with one for every class (except Shamans).
We also looked at all the large
and some classes got Artifact Traits available as Talents.
Blizzard discussed these topics in
with Patrick Dawson and Chris Robinson.
Several updates are coming to gear systems:
item level and stat squish
update is coming in Battle for Azeroth.
Legendaries and Titanforging
info was revealed, including no Titanforging on Azerite armor.
The Heart of Azeroth is empowered by Azerite
and can empower latent energies in pieces of gear.
are a new 3 person co-op experience.
Kul Tiras and Zandalar
are the new continents, focusing on the maritime empire for the Alliance and trolls for the Horde.
Check out more expansion art in the
Art of WoW Panel
Stormwind and Orgrimmar
also received updates!
are heavily inspired by RTS games, and players will fight for control of Stromgarde as they expand their faction's base.
Some major quality of live changes were announced at the
such as increased character slots and upright orcs.
increased default bagpack slots
are on the way if you use an authenticator.
At the end of the Q&A we also learned that the
Battle for Azeroth Beta Opt-In
is now open.
Several announced features are
coming in Patch 7.3.5
Zone Scaling and Leveling Improvements
- all pre-Legion zones will now scale up to certain levels.
will be the second Timewalking raid, as part of the Wrath of the Lich King Timewalking Event.
The Battle for Azeroth Intro Cinematic was
previewed at the Opening Ceremony
The events of the cinematic were transformed into a
for the Battle of Lordaeron.
Before the Storm
covers the events leading up to the cinematic. The
book cover was revealed
and convention-goers received a
copy of the Prologue
We speculated on the
Burning of Teldrassil
which directly leads to the Battle for Lordaeron.
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