Damien

Dev Watercooler: Scenarios

Sign in to follow this  

1 post in this topic

Blizzard Official WoW Blog

Posted Image

We recently began revealing the Scenarios you’ll experience at level 90 in World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria on our preview site. As the final tweaks are being made, we thought it would be a good time to sit down with Senior Game Designer Dave Maldonado and Game Designer Jonathan LeCraft for a little behind-the-scenes perspective on this unique new system.

Q: What do Scenarios bring to World of Warcraft that we haven't seen before?

Dave Maldonado: From a technological standpoint, almost everything in the system is new. Players are obviously going to see the World of Warcraft they know and love when they're running Scenarios, but all of the technology driving what we can do with Scenarios is new, and we took that as an opportunity to really indulge in new ways of interacting with the players, the NPCs, and the environment. It was a lot of work to design the technology, with a whole new UI, and new tracking systems and so forth, and while that programming was going on, we got to dream up and implement a lot of randomization and many new things for monsters to do and for the environment to do.

Jon LeCraft: With Scenarios, we can do even more than we could previously do with group quests, because even with phasing and all of our options in the outdoor world, there were a number of things that we still wanted to bring to the game. We can now change the environment and change the ways things spawn and change the behavior of enemies on the fly, and that opens up nearly infinite possibilities.

Posted Image

The Battle of Theramore, Alliance Scenario

Dave Maldonado: My favorite example is the concept of a ship that you want to destroy by setting it on fire. So you could storm the ship, kill everyone on-board, and then burn it down. But what happens when you decide to sneak on to the ship, leave everyone alive, and set the fire while they're all standing around? In Scenarios, we have a lot of flexibility to imagine the different ways that players might choose to play, and have the NPCs and the environment react to that more naturally. The result is — you're going to see all those NPCs on the ship jump off because it's on fire, and then look back at it in amazement. Other NPCs that were making deliveries to the ship before it became a floating inferno are going to react to the change in their world. Instead of trying to put the box that they're carrying on the boat, or despawning and disappearing before your eyes, or something else unrealistic, they're going to stop and gawk at the flames.

Q: We've seen Scenarios compared to dungeons a lot, yet you're comparing them to group quests. What aspects of Scenarios are like dungeons, and what aspects are like group quests, and what’s just new?

Jon LeCraft: For one, you're in a group and you start the Scenario by going into the Dungeon Finder, and if you aren't in a group, one will be provided for you. That's dungeon-like. Also, Scenarios have a boss at the end.

Dave Maldonado: The boss at the end brings everyone together.

Jon LeCraft: They're very different than the bosses you're used to, though, because Scenarios are designed to be completed by three characters of any spec.

Posted Image

The Greenstone Village Scenario

Dave Maldonado: We're still tuning and discussing exactly how difficult Scenarios will be, but there are many major differences between Scenario bosses and dungeon bosses. Scenario bosses often can't be tanked, or tanking isn't very helpful. They can be easier than dungeon bosses, because they have to be feasible for three DPS players, but they can also be much more difficult than dungeon bosses, because they can have very high damage attacks that must be avoided by the players. These encounters aren't designed in a way that you can tank or heal through their massive attacks. You either pay attention to the signs that an attack is coming and avoid it, or you fail.

Jon LeCraft: Because there won't always be a certain number of interrupts, or a certain amount of aggro control or healing in a Scenario, these boss encounters rely on placement, timing, and pattern recognition.

Dave Maldonado: At the same time, there are many different things you can do to bosses in Scenarios. You can often crowd-control them, or stun them, or interrupt what they're doing. This would make them very easy to deal with in other circumstances, but they have a huge health pool and the ability to deal massive amounts of damage. Very few can be "tank-and-spanked."

Q: As World of Warcraft players, how would you describe the Scenario experience?

Dave Maldonado: Watching other players test Scenarios, and testing them ourselves, they’re really what I would call a “pure WoW” experience. They give you the option to do a lot more with your character than in other aspects of the game. In PvP, for instance, there isn’t a lot of room for experimenting, or using all of your spells, or even using most of your spells -- unless you want to get killed. In Scenarios, we see every class, every spec, and every style of play being viable. Furthermore, Scenarios are places where you get to experiment with how you move through the environment. There are all sorts of things you can skip, or choose to interact with that someone else might skip, and those decisions you make will have a noticeable impact on what happens next in that Scenario.

Posted Image

Jon LeCraft: I keep coming back to that. Choosing to interact with things is a constant in Scenarios. A huge ghost mob might be mind-controllable. An urn might be something that you can try to access, and it might drop a few gold for you while spawning a couple of mobs that you have to deal with.

Q: What’s coming next for this system?

Dave Maldonado: More Scenarios! We’ve got a lot of really cool ideas, and this is content that we hope to make even more of as we start producing post-expansion content patches.

You can check out feature pages on the Greenstone Village and A Brewing Storm Scenarios on our Mists of Pandaria website.

(Source)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Similar Content

    • By Vlad
      This thread is for comments about Episode 38 of our Podcast.
    • By HeavenlyFaucet
      What a tournament lined up for Blizzard at World Cyber Games 2019 in Xi'an.
      They got Hearthstone up and Warcraft 3 is finally back. Too bad Reforged won't be making it back in time. Hopefully when Warcraft 3: Reforged is out we will be seeing more tournaments with Warcraft competitions.
      You can even see the excitement of these games posting the official registrations on their twitter,
      for WC3:
      Hearthstone: https://twitter.com/HSesports/status/1105247640646754304
      Who knows maybe even one day we will get some Diablo tournaments if that is possible. Blizzard can host their own event as well with so many of their games having a great esports scene already.
    • By Vlad
      This thread is for comments about Episode 37 of our Podcast.
    • By Stan
      Layoffs at Activision Blizzard have been confirmed during the earnings call earlier today. The company plans to eliminate 8% of its non-development employees according to Activision Blizzard's CEO Bobby Kotick, who told investors that the main focus in 2019 is stabilization and restructuring due to missed expectations in 2018.
      UPDATE #2: President of Blizzard, J. Allen Brack, posted about the layoffs and Blizzard's future in more detail.
      Blizzard (Source)
      Blizzard Community…
      Over the past few months, I’ve met with many people throughout Blizzard, talking about how we create our future. One thing that remains constant: we are committed to creating epic games and entertainment experiences. 
      Our development pipeline is strong, and we have the largest lineup of games that we’ve ever had. At the same time, Blizzard tries to have a level of craftsmanship and excellence in all that we do. Maintaining those standards as we continue expanding these worlds takes both time and talented developers.
      With that in mind, we have plans to add to game development. We are dedicated to bringing you more content across existing game franchises and bringing our unannounced projects to life. Esports and the Overwatch League are also important priorities, and we will continue to produce great competitive content. 
      To better support these priorities, we need to reorganize some of our non-development teams. As a result, we will be reducing the number of non-development positions in North America and anticipate a related process in our regional offices over the coming months subject to local requirements. This was an extremely difficult decision, and we want to acknowledge the effort of everyone who has contributed to Blizzard. To assist with the transition, we are offering each impacted employee a severance package that includes additional pay, benefits continuation, and career and recruiting support to help them find their next opportunity. These people are members of the Blizzard family—they’ve cared deeply and contributed greatly to our work here and we are extremely grateful for all they’ve done.
      As difficult as some of these organizational changes are, I am confident in Blizzard’s future and we will continue working hard to live up to not only our mission, but your expectations. We look forward to sharing everything with you when it’s ready.
      J. Allen Brack
      UPDATE #1: Community Manager Ythisens has been laid off.
      Placeholder for tweet 1095450053001371649 In an effort to reinforce the foundation for growth, the plan is to invest more for their biggest, internally owned franchises and de-prioritize games and initiatives that are not meeting their expectations by reducing certain non-development and administrative-related costs across their business.
      Blizzard had 35 million MAUs in the quarter (down from 37 million MAUs in Q3 2018), as Overwatch and Hearthstone saw sequential stability and World of Warcraft saw expected declines post the expansion release this summer.
      Building on a 11-year partnership, Blizzard extended its joint venture with NetEase to publish its games in China through January 2023.
      Activision Blizzard plans to increase development resources by 20% for Diablo, Hearthstone, Overwatch, and World of Warcraft.
      Destiny did not meet financial expectations of the company, so they transferred publishing rights for the game back to Bungie.
      Call of Duty was the #1 selling console franchise worldwide in 2018, a feat accomplished for nine of the last ten years. Full-game downloads for the game were over 40% of console sell-through. A mobile Call of Duty title is planned for the franchise.
      (Source)
      The company is reducing the number of non-development positions by 8% and increasing devs across key franchises by 20%.
    • By Stan
      According to Bloomberg, Activision Blizzard plans to cut hundreds of jobs due to slowing sales Tuesday. 
      The layoffs are reportedly part of a restructuring aimed at centralizing functions and boosting profit. Activision Blizzard shares dropped by 2.5% to $42.88 on Friday. Hearthstone and Overwatch playerbase is shrinking. Destiny 2 sales were disappointing, and as a consequence, Activision handed over publishing rights for the game back to Bungie earlier in January. Two CFOs left Activision Blizzard so far in 2019. Spencer Neumann left to join Netflix and Amrita Ahuja left the company for Square.
      Video game giants are struggling and it's not just Activison Blizzard. Electronic Arts share fell 13% Wednesday, following the latest Battlefield V disappointment. Activision Blizzard is supposed to announce these mass layoffs Tuesday. What do you think? Let us know in the comments!