In a bi-monthly series, the team at Stratics has posted the results of their Q and A with the develiopers of World of Warcraft.
Q. When designing quests do you use usability testing to see how different cultures would interpret them? - Douglas Meinhardt from the Uldum realm.
A. Localization and usability are one of our top priorities when we design quests.We have dedicated localization teams who translate game content for each region. When something is found to be off color or unidentifiable, they make changes to insure that the text works in that particular region.
We have a brand new guide out today detailing the battleground,
Alterac Valley. Ever wondered how this battleground worked but found
few details? Well wonder no more! Our guide goes over, in detail, all
of the aspects of Alterac Valley and various strategies and tactics to
help you save the day for your team!
"Alterac Valley (or AV) is a sprawling 40 Alliance vs. 40 Horde
instanced battleground for levels 51 through 60. The battleground
hosts a battle between the Horde's Frostwolf Clan and the Alliance's
Stormpike Expedition. Players fight over various graveyards, towers,
and other resources while attempting to assault the enemy General whom
is deeply entrenched in the enemy keep. AV hosts a variety of PvP and
PvE objectives to supply ample ways for any player to get into the
White Wolf Offers Free Downloads of Adventures and More...
Need time away from the computer? Just want to take some time to experience pen and paper gaming? Try your hand at some new adventures in World of Warcraft. White Wolf is running a Week of Warcraft, complete with free adventure downloads and a 50% sale. How can you pass that up??
Enjoy official background material and stories for World of Warcraft that you can’t find anywhere else. “Bones of Ironforge” is a free download to get you started. With brand new adventures to experience, after you leave your mark, Azeroth will never be the same.
Blizzard developers on the World of Warcraft forums are saying that there are no "announced" plans to do additional Blizzard MMORPGs based on the Diablo and Starcraft franchises, and rumors are blatantly untrue.
"I believe this [rumour] was a misquote," said Drysc. "We haven't announced any specific development plans beyond the upcoming expansion for World of Warcraft,
and we don't have any intentions to focus on only one genre or platform with our future games."
"Nothing in that rumour is true in regards to Blizzard," added EnoYls. "If I had to guess, there was some confusion between what Vivendi has planned for its its game division versus what Blizzard has planned. While Blizzard is owned by Vivendi, their game division operates separately from Blizzard."
So Vivendi owns Blizzard, Blizzard is the number one cash cow, yet Vivendi takes nothing more than a philosophical interest in Blizzard's plans. Yea, ok.
It looks like WoW is the MMO for Blizzard. However, one can never tell can they?
I believe this was a misquote. We haven't announced any specific development plans beyond the upcoming expansion for World of Warcraft, and we don't have any intentions to focus on only one genre or platform with our future games.
In the biggest gaming news to hit since, well, the Burning Crusade expansion was announced...
During a presentation to Wall Street today, a company representative from Vivendi reportedly said, "All Blizzard franchises will become MMOGs." The rep said they have a model in place to produce an MMOG for $50 million over the next three years.
Personally I believe the reasoning to be that they saw more "real life" Night Elves than any one group should ever see.
While QuakeCon 2006 is apparently still going to happen, it's looking like Blizzard will not be doing a 2006 edition of their BlizzCon, which debuted last fall. According to a post on the subject on the World of Warcraft forums a Blizzard employee stated, "We haven't yet begun planning a BlizzCon for this year, and truthfully it isn't intended as an annual event. We had a lot of fun though, and we're looking forward to getting another one going and inviting everyone to come hang out with us and check out everything that is Blizzard."
Blizzard again bans more accounts than some online games have...
In what's becoming almost a monthly occurence, Blizzard is wiping out massive numbers of EULA-violating gold farmer accounts. This time its 30,000 - the rough equivalent of the Puzzle Pirates community (according to MMOGchart.com). As usual, the target is not so much gold farmers working hand-to-mouth; it's botters who attempt to automate farming chores.
We will continue to aggressively monitor all World of Warcraft realms in order to protect the service and its players from the harmful effects of cheating. Please note that selling World of Warcraft content, such as gold, items, and characters, can result in a permanent ban of the involved accounts from World of Warcraft.
As our loyal readers know, every Monday the TenTonHammer network takes a look at a topic in the MMO genre and produces an editorial for each of our sites. Today the World of Warcraft - Ten Ton Hammer site's newest writer takes a crack at his first ever TenTonHammer editorial, and knocks one out of the park. Here is a sample of Doogmeister's look at real estate in WoW.
In real life, when we look at real estate of any kind, we ask ourselves this key question:
“What is appealing to me about this particular location?”
And when we think about the answers to that question, we consider several factors, such as:
Appearance – Does it look good?
Convenience – Will life here be easy or difficult?
Location – Is it near all the amenities I want?
Design – Is it well planned and laid out?
Enjoyability – Will I enjoy living here?
In the World of Warcraft, it’s not much different! We all want to be near our trainers, vendors, flight masters and quest givers. We all want the areas we play in to look good and lend themselves to hassle free questing and adventuring. And of course, we all want to enjoy ourselves during our adventures in Azeroth!
In this article, I’ll give my opinion on what I feel to be the best (and worst) designed zones, cities and instances in the game! I’ll also be outlining my reasons for my choices! Note that these reflect only my opinion, and you may well have different thoughts than me on the subject! Also, this article is written from the perspective of a casual player whose raid dungeon experience is very limited, so I’ve kept this article limited to areas in which you play up to level 60.