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Posts with tag Tom-Chilton

WoW Source talks Warlords of Draenor, new female Forsaken models

In the latest episode of WoW Source, Morgan Webb sits down with Lead Encounter Designer Ion Hazzikostas, Senior Art Director Chris Robinson, and Game Director Tom Chilton to talk BlizzCon 2013 and the next expansion, Warlords of Draenor. Along with an overview of the various features of Warlords, there's an exclusive look at the new female Forsaken models. Although these are just stills of the character model in progress, they're gorgeous -- and I can't wait to see them in action and live.

Check out the full video for insights and news about BlizzCon 2013, the development of Warlords of Draenor, and more. Those amazing new character models pop up at about thirteen minutes into the video, along with more footage of the other new character models already revealed at BlizzCon 2013.

Filed under: Blizzard, News items, BlizzCon

Warlords of Draenor: 5 cool things you may have missed at BlizzCon 2013

Warlords of Draenor trailer
There has been so much news over the past few days that it can be difficult to keep up. I'm still finding little bits of information here or there that I managed to miss amidst the onslaught. Here are a few interesting things that may have slipped under your radar.

1. The in-game group finder is being expanded

No, I'm not talking about random matchmaking with the dungeon finder. I am talking about Blizzard's answer to the oQueue addon. According to Ghostcrawler in the gameplay and systems panel, they recognize this is a feature players really want, so they've decided to add it to to the base game. You'll be able to create and browse for groups of all types and sizes. Want to PUG a cross-realm RBG team? No problem. Want to set up a group to do an achievement run in Icecrown Citadel? You can do that. Maybe your guild raid group is short a healer and you're looking for another? This is all possible since normal mode raids (soon to be heroic mode) will work cross-realm out of the gate.

Blizzard would prefer if you pugged and made new friends rather than use random matchmaking, so they've added a new mechanic called "stacking the deck" which will earn you bonus valor for every member of your group who isn't added via random matchmaking. Random matchmaking via dungeon finder and raid finder will still exist, of course.

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Filed under: BlizzCon

Furor returns to World of Warcraft

Alex Furor Afrasiabi
Alex Afrasiabi, AKA Furor, has returned to work on World of Warcraft. Alex began his career as the guild leader of a famous Everquest guild (Fires of Heaven) and then came to work at Blizzard, eventually becoming Lead World Designer for WoW. He left WoW and was rumored to be working on the Titan project. But now, according to the BlizzCon schedule, he is the Creative Director for what we assume is the next expansion. He will be on World of Warcraft: The Adventure Continues panel.

Also appearing on the panel is Game Director Tom Chilton and Dave Kosak, who was formerly the Lead Quest Designer and is now listed as the Lead Narrative Designer. As this panel will be discussing the direction of the story, Chris Metzen will of course be there as Senior Vice President of Story and Franchise Development.

The panel will be at 2:30 p.m. PST on the A Panel Stage. So if you are interested in the story and/or the return of Furor, the Adventure Continues panel is for you. If you're not attending BlizzCon and don't have the Virtual Ticket, WoW Insider will definitely be covering this panel.

Filed under: News items, BlizzCon

What race needs new character models the most?

Breakfast Topic What race needs new character models the most
Over the weekend at Gamescom, Game Director Tom Chilton and Lead Content Designer Cory Stockton revealed that new character models for the older races are currently in development and are about 25% done. Chilton also added that he wasn't sure if all the new models would be launched at the same time, or if Blizzard would opt to release them over several patches as they are completed. I'm in favor of the latter myself, though I can see that resulting in an unbearable amount of QQ from players whose characters didn't initially receive model updates.

The whole thing makes me wonder which races are likely to get updated first. It's possible the developers will go after the most popular races first (humans and blood elves) since that will appease the largest number of people. It's also just as possible they'll work in order of which races need new models the most. That raises the question though, which race is in the most dire need of a character model update?

If I had to pick one I'd probably go with dwarf, specifically the female dwarf because so few people play it. Granted, I don't think female dwarves necessarily suffer from the worst looking model, but they're somehow still one of the least popular choices among players. That alone makes me feel like the model needs some time and attention to not only update it, but to broaden its appeal somewhat. Mind you, female dwarves don't need to have the same appeal as blood elves or humans, but they certainly should have more than they currently do.

Which race do you think needs a character model update the most? Tell us why.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

Low level dungeon and raid scaling technology complete

Low level dungeoun scaling technology completed
Blizzard's Game Director Tom Chilton and Lead Content Designer Cory Stockton have really gone out on a limb with interviews at Gamescom, spilling every bean and answering every question with the transparency and openness we're coming to expect from new look Blizzard. One question they were asked related to the up-scaling of low level dungeons. Tom responded as follows:
That's something that we did actively work on and certainly the technology is pretty well in place at this point. We were also hoping to get the dungeons to a point where they were scaling, however we didn't actually end up coming up with a reward scheme that we felt fit correctly.

I think it's important to remember that today, players can go back and do old content by soloing it and they usually do that to get the transmog gear, and I think if they were going to to go back and do it as a true 25-man raid of Black Temple, as an example, they'd would have to feel like they were getting something that was useful for it as well as transmog gear, and we still have to figure out what the right reward scheme for that is.

We don't want it to compete with the new raid in terms of getting you the best possible gear, but at the same time, it has to be worth something. So that's something we haven't really resolved yet, so we won't be seeing scaling raids until sometime in the future.
So what do you think they could offer as a reward for redoing old content "properly", in an upscaled raid or as downscaled characters? I feel like points, Valor, Justice, whatever, would be a good reward, along with the transmog gear and pets, but maybe also a low and random drop-rate of Garrosh-style heirloom weapons. What's your take on it?

Filed under: News items

Item Squish extremely likely for WoW's next expansion

Item Squish very likely for WoW's next expansion
Gamescom is drawing to a close, and with it a flurry of developer interviews have been taking place. One which happened just a couple of hours ago was a raiding-specific round table with Game Director Tom Chilton and Lead Content Designer Cory Stockton. One of the questions asked related to the much-debated item squish, and whether we would see it in WoW 6.0. Tom and Cory responded as follows:
TC: "If we don't do the item squish it's going to require a lot of re-engineering of our combat code to actually support bigger numbers. We're getting really close to the point where the code can't..."
CS: "Yeah, the code can't compile the numbers"
TC: "Yeah it can't compile the numbers, so we are testing the item squish internally with the expansion, and I think a good time to launch it would be right before the next expansion so people are already used to it by the time the expansion launches. So, that's the current plan, but we'll see how it works out. I hope we can."
Of course that isn't a firm confirmation, there have been many changes, certainly ones of this magnitude, that have gone into internal testing and not ever made it live. This is no cast iron guarantee. But, the devs mention how their combat code is nearing the point where it can't actually handle the big numbers, and it seems that a full expansion of item level escalation would do nothing to help with this issue. So an item squish certainly seems extremely likely for the next expansion.

Filed under: News items

Tom Chilton talks mistakes and successes in WoW design

quest tracker in action
In case you hadn't heard, Gamescon is going on over in Germany, and Blizzard has a good chunk of representatives over there giving interviews, showing off Hearthstone, and talking about all kinds of stuff. If you're familiar with Blizzard interviews, one thing that becomes apparent over the years is the way they're willing to talk openly about design decisions that they consider to have been a mistake.

You may remember the furious storm in a teacup that accompanied the statement that the implementation of Arena PvP was, in retrospect, something they regretted. Well, over at PCGamesN they've got a similarly candid interview up with Lead Designer Tom Chilton about the limitations of questing, dailies, and secondary professions.

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Filed under: News items, Interviews

Tom Chilton: "At some point it's possible that World of Warcraft could end up being free-to-play..."


According to NowGamer, WoW's Game Director Tom Chilton said the following to them at Gamescom 2013 regarding WoW going Free-to-Play:

Tom Chilton
I definitely think that free-to-play MMOs will be around for a very long time. At some point it's possible that World of Warcraft could end up being free-to-play, but I do think there's always room for there to be subscription games.

This is about as close to WoW going Free-to-Play as we have yet seen, however the intention is clearly there that Chilton believes WoW won't be doing so soon.

Read the whole topic over on NowGamer for more information... and keep in mind this doesn't mean the next expansion will bring Free-to-Play WoW, or that there are any plans for it to happen. Game Directors like to talk about possible futures, and that's all Chilton is doing (like any good Game Director should).

Filed under: News items

Patch 5.4, flexible raids, dailies and more with Tom Chilton

Patch 5.4 is nearing completion, and soon we'll see the Siege of Orgrimmar and the fate of Garrosh Hellscream on live servers. But 5.4 has much more to offer than the raid itself -- we'll have plenty of other content to play through as well. Featuring new pets, new mounts, a new raid difficulty and much, much more, patch 5.4 is shaping up to be a substantial addition to an already massive expansion.

We had the opportunity to chat with Lead Game Designer Tom Chilton regarding all of the above, as well as plenty of other topics of contention in regards to both patch 5.4 and Mists of Pandaria as an expansion. Read on to hear what he had to say about Flexible raiding, the upcoming Connected Realms feature, the future of daily quests and the challenges of creating a raid out of a capital city.

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Filed under: Interviews, Mists of Pandaria

Tom Chilton chats about what's coming in patch 5.3

blizz tom chilton interview wip
We know Blizzard has a lot planned for patch 5.3, which could go live any time now. But to keep us busy while we wait for the next batch of new WoW content, Blizzard Insider has posted an interview with Game Director Tom Chilton. Though the interview mostly summarizes what we already know about the upcoming patch, it provides a great overview of what's coming with a bit of added insight Blizzard's development thought process. Covered in the interview are how the devs felt patch 5.2 performed, the storyline of patch 5.3, PvP changes and the new battleground, new scenarios (and heroic scenarios), gear and the ability to choose which spec you'd like gear for, and visible pet battles.

The patches are certainly coming our way quickly. Are you looking forward to patch 5.3 or still working on patch 5.2?

Filed under: Blizzard, Interviews, Mists of Pandaria

Blizzard developers discuss patch 5.2 and more

Patch 52 Developer fansite interviews
Last week was a flurry of preparation for patch 5.2's launch, including a whole host of developer interviews. WoW Insider had the opportunity to sit down and chat with Lead Quest Designer Dave Kosak, but there were plenty more interviews to be had as the week progressed. And just in case you happened to miss any of that developer excitement, we've put together a roundup of all the fan site interviews in one handy spot.
While the same developers may have done multiple interviews, each interview offers a different look at what's in store for patch 5.2 and beyond. It's certainly nice to see the developers out and about in the community and talking content -- and one thing's for certain, everyone is pumped for patch 5.2's release. Be sure to check out all of the interviews for the most in-depth look at patch 5.2 you can get.

Filed under: Blizzard, Interviews, Mists of Pandaria

Blizzard developer interviews

Blizzard Developer Interviews
After WoW Insider's Anne Stickney rounded off Blizzard's Developer Interview schedule with her chat to Cory Stockton and Dave Kosak, discussing patch 5.1, brawler's guild, lore, dailies, proving grounds, scenarios and player housing, WoW Insider thought we should bring together all the interviews in the recent set.

Lead Systems Designer Greg "Ghostcrawler" Street:
  • Legendary, GAMEBREAKER.tv Ghostcrawler discusses raiding, PvP, alts, reputation, dailies and cross realm zones with the Legendary hosts.
  • All Things Azeroth Design, Cataclysm vs. Mists, patch 5.2 release schedule, classes, transmogrification changes.
  • Wowjuju Brawler's guild, daily quests, transmogrification, 10man vs 25man, the gear grind, pet gear for battle pets?
Lead Encounter Designer Ion Hazzikostas
  • Convert2Raid Scenarios, challenge modes, Brawler's Guild, dailies, and, of course, raids.
  • Method Coming soon!
Lead Content Designer Cory "Mumper" Stockton:
  • Curse Coming soon!
  • Warcraft Pets Pet design process, pets in future expansions, pet battles, potential for pet gender and breeding, pet model updates, "boss" pets
Lead Quest Designer Dave Kosak
  • Darkmoon Herald Hidden quests, easter eggs, phasing, lore, future questing changes, interesting activities, tillers, dailies.
  • Wowhead Patch 5.1 factions, brawlers' guild, scenarios and their lore involvement, dailies, alts, faction grinds, cooking changes.
Lead Designer Tom Chilton

Mists of Pandaria is here! The level cap has been raised to 90, many players have returned to Azeroth, and pet battles are taking the world by storm. Keep an eye out for all of the latest news, and check out our comprehensive guide to Mists of Pandaria for everything you'll ever need to know.

Filed under: News items

Reddit AMA transcript now available

Reddit AMA transcript now available
Yesterday, several members of the Warcraft development team had a massive AMA on Reddit. AMA stands for Ask Me Anything -- and players responded with a deluge of questions on everything from Cross-Realm zones to story and lore. For the sake of convenience, Blizzard put together a transcript of the entire post on their website earlier today.

The questions and answers are separated by the designer who answered them. Game Director Tom Chilton focused on PvP, gameplay systems, cross-realm zones, character models and development timelines. Lead Quest Designer Dave Kosak focused on lore, novels, characters, and quest and zone design. Lead Encounter Designer Ion Hazzikostas focused on dungeons and raids as well as loot and talent systems and endgame progression. And of course Lead Systems Designer Greg Street focused on classes, as well as gameplay systems, cross-realm zones, and dungeons and raids.

There is a ton of information contained in the AMA, including some clarification on the purpose and mechanics of Cross-Realm zones, something that a lot of people have been wondering about. Check out the full transcript for an information overload of Warcraft goodies.


It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

Filed under: Blizzard, News items

Reddit AMA with WoW developers today

Mists of Pandaria
Community Manager Zarhym will be hosting an AMA (or Ask Me Anything) in /r/WoW on Reddit this evening at 5:30 p.m. PDT (8:30 p.m. EDT). Joining him will be Greg "Ghostcrawler" Street, Dave Kosak, Tom Chilton, and Ion Hazzikostas.

For those who don't know, an AMA is where you post questions for the people participating and they are supposed to answer them all -- or as many as possible in the time allotted. Because this will be a heavily attended session, they will be answering the questions that are upvoted the most.

WoW Insider will be monitoring the AMA, so we'll keep you posted on any important news items that arise.

Zarhym's post with all the details is after the break.

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Filed under: Blizzard, News items

Tom Chilton on the future of PvP in Mists of Pandaria

Tom Chilton on the future of PvP in Mists of Pandaria
Nethaera sat down with WoW's game director Tom Chilton and asked him some questions about PvP in Mists of Pandaria. While a lot of the information we already knew about, there are some highlights that are worth noting.

The first thing is particularly interesting ...

Some highlights:
  • Blizzard is considering putting an item in-game that would let players on the ground shoot down mounted players, pulling them into combat (if they're PvP-flagged and in close enough range).
  • There'll be no Wintergrasp or Tol Barad.
  • City guards on PvP realms will not be as tough as guards on PvE realms (PvE realm guard strength will remain as it is now).
  • The new BGs should be in the beta for testing in the next couple of weeks.
  • The new BGs may be added to the rated BG list at some point in the future.
  • Players will see opponents class and spec (although not how that spec is used) before they start an Arena match.
The full blue post, after the break.

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Filed under: News items, PvP, Mists of Pandaria

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