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Posts with tag battlecry-mosaic

Tom Chilton explains early WoW class balance (or lack thereof)

We see a fair amount of pining for "the way things used to be" in this community -- rose-colored hindsight that is, by all accounts, horribly wrong. Maybe you enjoyed the sense of wonder upon going through the game the first time. That's completely understandable. But no one really enjoyed running Molten Core. Or the old honor system. Or the horrible class balance and several patently useless talent trees at launch.

Speaking of, I wonder if there's anybody that could shed some light on that last bit. Maybe Tom Chilton, the lead Game Director could, in his latest interview on the five-year anniversary mini-site.

As it turns out, Chilton was brought in in early 2004 to work on the PvP portion of the game, but ended up handling a lot more when the honor system was put on hold to handle more pressing concerns, like making gameplay interesting.
"From April until the game shipped, the vast majority of my time was spent working on the design for the auction house, the mail system, and implementing the talent trees for every class. I was the only person available to do that -- our other class designer, Kevin Jordan, was mainly focused on ensuring that all of the classes had spells and abilities up to level 60, and managing the flow of when you'd get which ability. Kevin and I, and Rob Pardo, and Mike Heiberg from the StarCraft team, all worked on that part of the game. It was exciting, but it was weird -- my experience with some of the classes was making a character of that class on an internal server, playing it up to level 10 to get a feel for how the class played, and starting to make 60 levels worth of talents. A lot of my early experience was trying to get familiar with every class."
Kind of explains a lot, doesn't it? Like Lacerate, for example. People who complain about balance nowadays really have no idea how bad it used to be, or how much Blizzard's process for fixing it has improved. Chilton goes into more detail about WoW's early development in his full interview on the Battlecry site.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Interviews

World of Warcraft 5th Anniversary mosaic finally complete

It looks like the fans followed through, after all, and we finally get to see the Battlecry mosaic much sooner than I'd previously thought. The completed mosaic reveals a truly awesome piece of art by Wei Wang depicting all the current faction leaders. By awesome I mean truly mind-blowing, and Blizzard has high resolution versions of both the mosaic and the actual painting available for download in different versions. The full mosaic, for example, can be viewed in all its 14400 x 6150 pixel glory. Arguably the best version is the dual screen wallpaper which shows the most detail, although there are also much smaller versions for mobile phones.

The Battlecry mosaic is comprised of 20,000 player-submitted pictures called out by Blizzard as part of the World of Warcraft 5th Anniversary celebration. Each section of the multi-part mosaic unlocked various content over the past few months, which included sneak peeks at conceptual art and even a piece of the game's musical score. The final artwork is arguably the best and coolest rendition of all the faction leaders so far, including a dual-wielding Magni Bronzebeard in armor that's significantly different from what he's wearing in-game, which may or may not hint at a possible model change come Cataclysm. Congratulations to all the fans who contributed to the mosaic!

Filed under: Blizzard, Arts and Crafts

Breakfast Topic: Artsy-fartsy

In the last year, I have noticed that Blizzard has been making more of an effort to reach out to its community. When I say community, I mean the artists, the writers, the singers, bloggers, theorycrafters, and everything in between.

From having the three major franchises join Twitter, to the Battlecry Mosaic, to contests galore -- tell me, what does this mean to you? Have you participated in any of these contests or events? I myself actually entered the Fan Art Calendar contest just last night, and while I'm hardly expecting to win, it was not only a fun project to work on but it made me realize that Blizzard has at least a genuine-looking interest in its artistic fanbase.

Are you guys enjoying the contests? Or do you believe it's all a big corporate sham to make Blizzard seem all moonbeams and kittens?

Discuss amongst yourselves!

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

BattleCry mosaic feature revealed: "Invincible"



Another portion of the BattleCry mosaic was revealed on Friday, bringing the total completed to 50%. This time, instead of unlocking a piece of art, Blizzard gave us something a little more special -- a 3-minute piece of music titled "Invincible" recalling the leitmotif of the Wrath of the Lich King trailer. Blizzard rather cryptically describes it thusly:

An ode to one who has fallen. Time and events have left it unclear whether the song refers to the former prince of Lordaeron or his beloved steed.

Cryptic or not, this is a beautiful piece of music, and one we're hoping appears in-game soon. Staffers here have guessed that "Invincible" might play either during or after the much-anticipated fight with the Lich King himself, and we're quite likely to see one whopper of a lore moment and cutscene. Fingers crossed, but until then, I'm going to enjoy playing this in Icecrown, and I'd kill to hear a rendition with a full chorus and symphony, perhaps at some social convention said to take place yearly...but surely that's just crazy talk.

Filed under: Blizzard

What's taking the Battlecry mosaic so long?

When the World of Warcraft Anniversary mini-site was unveiled last November, one of its features was a photo-mosaic dubbed the Battlecry which would unlock little art goodies each time a certain milestone was reached. The Battlecry mosaic called for player submissions to submit their pictures with a logo of their favored faction, with a modest goal of 20,000 player-submitted pictures in order to reveal the final artwork created specially for the event.

It's come along rather smoothly, and some really cool player pictures have been submitted, with the seeming abundance of Horde-aligned pictures prompting us to ask where the Alliance pride was. But what really surprises me is how long the whole project is taking. When the site was launched, one of the first questions that actually ran through my head was how long it would take to fill up the whole mosaic. With over ten million active players, you'd think getting to 20,000 would be easy. Out of ten million, that's like a drop in a bucket. But after almost two months of the site being active, we're still only at 32% of the goal. Why?

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Blizzard

The Queue: The bird is most certainly not the word


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW.com's daily Q&A column where the WoW.com team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Mike Sacco will be your host today.

Normally I'm all right with birds, but this one kept murdering me in cold blood last night on my priest, even though I was several levels higher than him. I mean, there are elite magnataur out there in the same zone with one-fourth the HP of this damn bird. What do you want from me, Alystros? I pay my taxes, I vote, I volunteer at the local museum. The least you could do is cut your HP and damage by about 75% so I can convert your corpse into gold and experience.

And what does that have to do with The Queue? Nothing, dear readers. Absolutely nothing.

Brysterside asked via Twitter:

What is the best way to start a WoW blog?

Simply put? Start writing! If you want to blog, you have to write. Find something you're passionate about in the game and write write write, because two things will keep readers coming: good content, and regular content. Make sure that you can provide both.

It's not easy getting the discipline to be a regular blogger -- just ask me -- but the payoff can be big in many ways. WoW.com has a series of articles on starting your own WoW blog, which you can start here. Hope that helps!

Read more →

Filed under: The Queue, Worgen

Fan pictures added to the Battlecry mosaic

We posted about Blizzard's Warcraft anniversary minisite a while back, and since then, they've been busy, filling it up with even more content. The community interviews and the new Blizzcast haven't yet appeared, but there are many, many pictures on the Battlecry mosaic submissions section. Pages and pages of fans showing their support for the Horde or the Alliance. It's quite a sight to see, actually -- the pictures range from the straightforward to the silly to the very involved (one couple's posed up with their t-shirts and Frostmourne and logo and everything). There's quite a few whole-guild pics too. There's 43 pages total, so it's a lot to look through, but it's definitely worth a browse.

Ancilorn reminds us, also, that this is a contest -- as more and more pictures from each faction roll in, we'll have access to some mosaic art using these actual pictures, the first piece of which was just revealed today. They've featured some of their favorite pictures over on the Facebook page as well. This is turning out to be a pretty cool idea, and as I said in the original post, I bet we'll be seeing these pictures in lots of other places in the future.

Filed under: Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Guilds, Blizzard

Blizzard unveils anniversary minisite

Monday wasn't only the fifth anniversary of World of Warcraft, it also kicked off the 15th anniversary of the Warcraft property at large (which makes sense -- you might remember that the original WoW intro started off with "Ten Years of Warcraft"). And so Blizzard has created a brand new minisite to commemorate the occasion -- they've got a full video interview with many of the staff members (no women, though, Blizzard -- what's the deal there?), and there are other Blizzard and community interviews coming as well. They've also got a feature called the "Battlecry Mosaic," in which they're inviting fans to take pictures of themselves showing Horde or Alliance pride with printable logos, which will then be assembled into a mosaic of up to 20,000 pictures. That should be a sight to see -- it'll eventually all be posted online, but I wouldn't be surprised to see something like it at the next BlizzCon also. Neth also says that whoever reaches set limits on pictures will get a faction exclusive piece of art revealed. Sounds fun.

I thought for a moment that this was what the Warcraft twitter account was referring to the other day, but they specifically said whatever they were talking about would be revealed on 11/25, and obviously that's still in the future. So we'll have to see what else appears this week. Still, the minisite is an excellent homepage for Blizzard's look back at their first and biggest franchise. Especially if you're a Warcraft fan, it's a must-see.

Filed under: Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Interviews

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