Question to the Higher ups (new models)

90 Blood Elf Paladin
10625
Pigtail hairstyles for human females.

/tilts head to one side



Damn you're quick!
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24 Night Elf Priest
7575
If all of this makes you feel that much further away from ever seeing new character models, I can say the project is still a regular topic of discussion for us. We want to figure out the best way to introduce such a feature without shocking a huge chunk of the playerbase that doesn't really think about how their character's features could be improved every time they log into the game.

Fair enough. Might I ask when you would start asking players what they would like to see in new character models? Do you plan to do that?

And one final question: I get the impression that if you update the character models, Blizzard would do so with the intention of removing the current models. Is it not possible to allow the current models to exist and still implement the choice of taking a new model(s) if you want to?
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90 Draenei Shaman
16335
So my question is, Why not transfer *more resources to getting new player models out if a whole lot of people want to see them right this moment? Do we as a people need to gather 1 thousand signatures to make this happen or is it a "Too bad, soo sad" situation?


Sutei - Daggerspine

It's absolutely not a "too bad" situation, Sutei. I know the concept of us having near unlimited resources to throw at whatever we want to is intriguing, but it's just not the case. We don't have an army of artists on layaway that we can transfer onto a project.

Just the same, we don't necessarily want to exponentially expand the head count of the art team to ensure a specific project gets done. There's a synergy we strive for on each of our development teams. In fact, we go to pretty great lengths to vet applicants whenever hiring for a new position. We need to know our iterative design philosophy and our core values are shared. So, if we were to hire several new artists to get this project finished, you certainly wouldn't see the results of that "right this moment."

Right now it's just difficult to give any sort of estimate on when new models might be available. Whenever a new expansion is in development there are many, many requests for new art assets. We're elbow deep in designing new gear sets, fleshing out the environments, finishing up several new creature models, etc.

If all of this makes you feel that much further away from ever seeing new character models, I can say the project is still a regular topic of discussion for us. We want to figure out the best way to introduce such a feature without shocking a huge chunk of the playerbase that doesn't really think about how their character's features could be improved every time they log into the game.


http://www.youtube.com/user/Intaanis

So, why is it a trained team of artists, animators, and computer graphic designers can't be as fast or efficient as one person ? The animations this single person does is done at a faster rate, and at a higher quality more consistent with lore than the very company that owns the game. He even designs gear to go with the models. You could easily have him make new character models in a month or two.

Either Vaanel is more talented than the entire artistic team combined in terms of speed and time efficiency, or there is a totally different reason for these models not being released. The only thing I can think of is that it takes time to code how the new model interacts with existing models and environments. That, or Blizzard is holding out on the models to stretch out the content planned longer for additional hype.
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90 Troll Druid
12190
01/19/2012 07:47 PMPosted by Votair
The only thing I can think of is that it takes time to code how the new model interacts with existing models and environments. That, or Blizzard is holding out on the models to stretch out the content planned longer for additional hype.


I think this is probably the issue. Even now, goblins and worgens have issues with certain head pieces.
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90 Troll Death Knight
12865
It's absolutely not a "too bad" situation, Sutei. I know the concept of us having near unlimited resources to throw at whatever we want to is intriguing, but it's just not the case. We don't have an army of artists on layaway that we can transfer onto a project.

Just the same, we don't necessarily want to exponentially expand the head count of the art team to ensure a specific project gets done. There's a synergy we strive for on each of our development teams. In fact, we go to pretty great lengths to vet applicants whenever hiring for a new position. We need to know our iterative design philosophy and our core values are shared. So, if we were to hire several new artists to get this project finished, you certainly wouldn't see the results of that "right this moment."

Right now it's just difficult to give any sort of estimate on when new models might be available. Whenever a new expansion is in development there are many, many requests for new art assets. We're elbow deep in designing new gear sets, fleshing out the environments, finishing up several new creature models, etc.

If all of this makes you feel that much further away from ever seeing new character models, I can say the project is still a regular topic of discussion for us. We want to figure out the best way to introduce such a feature without shocking a huge chunk of the playerbase that doesn't really think about how their character's features could be improved every time they log into the game.

How much time was devoted to designing Tyrael's Charger and the Winged Guardian?
Edited by Jubba on 1/19/2012 7:55 PM PST
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90 Night Elf Hunter
5490

We don't have an army of artists on layaway that we can transfer onto a project.


Bologna. Activision's most recent SEC filed 10-Q showed annualized "subscription" revenue of 1.5bln dollars annually. 2.4bln USD cash on hand. Estimated annual operating profit of 600mm.

You could very easily have an army of artists do new models (or actually make the vaporware dance studio) Blizzard just chooses not to... which, frankly, does fall in the realm of "too bad, soo sad" this project does not maximize our firm's shareholder value.

That said, I guess I happen to agree with the decision.
Edited by Toriigate on 1/19/2012 7:54 PM PST
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90 Draenei Shaman
16335
Indeed, I certainly would understand that. Coding can result in some weird and unexpected results. However, all the blues posts on the new models I see usually end up stating how they haven't even moved past the art phase. Zar just said they're still in the discussion phase. A new expansion is coming out, and if we have to wait almost a year, some new models would seem like a logical selling point.
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23 Undead Warlock
250
01/19/2012 07:23 PMPosted by Zarhym
Right now it's just difficult to give any sort of estimate on when new models might be available. Whenever a new expansion is in development there are many, many requests for new art assets. We're elbow deep in designing new gear sets, fleshing out the environments, finishing up several new creature models, etc.


I'm not going to deny the importance of these things, but surely new character models should be a high priority. Gear will come and go, we'll out level zones and kill all it's new shiny creatures.

But our characters are the ones who will be with us that whole time, and beyond. We're quickly becoming a sore thumb in an ever increasingly detailed world that surrounds us, with even some of the new gloves having more detail on them than the older models faces.

So while i'm sure everybody appreciates the effort the art teams puts in to making everything around us look so good, I humbly ask your no doubt over worked art team to work on changing the thing we see most. Besides, I bet a lot of them would be chomping at the bit for a chance at doing it!
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90 Draenei Shaman
16335
01/19/2012 07:58 PMPosted by Mavrios
If Blizzard had the resources for new models as you say, we wouldn't have Deathwing come back in time pretending to be Neltharion to the Well of Eternity when he heard we were going after the Dragon Soul.


They actually said that it was because it would be a waste of resources. Too little screen time. They COULD have done it. Plus, it was a patch. Blizzard has a whole expansion development time to make new models, which they have done with patch time limits.

http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/3657276591?page=3#59
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85 Draenei Paladin
2225
01/19/2012 07:32 PMPosted by Lionhearth
I want better beards
I also want a beard.
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90 Troll Rogue
8270
"We want to figure out the best way to introduce such a feature without shocking a huge chunk of the playerbase that doesn't really think about how their character's features could be improved every time they log into the game."

This strikes me as a little dramatic. Players can be cognizant of the visual discrepancy between character models and current content without necessarily stressing over it "every time they log into the game." The reality is that the visual contrast gets starker with each improvement made to WoW's art, and it's reached a point where I venture to say the disconnect is noticeable to just about everyone. That doesn't make the more vocal proponents of an update obsessive or unreasonable (not your words, I know.)

Many of the opinions I've read (much of them not on the official forums, but on independent sites like WoW Insider) come more from a place of real appreciation for WoW's art and the unique style the art team has cultivated over the years. Sure, there are those who simply want More, and may never be satisfied with any amount of new content. But it's been my experience that many, many of us know that with all of the advances to character art that were showcased in the art panel at Blizzcon, the art team could really knock it out of the park with the old races.

Pero'tharn, the satyr boss in the Well of Eternity 5-man, is a great example of a "vanilla" model beautifully updated while remaining faithful to the original silhouette and design, and I think it says a lot in terms of the feasibility of improving characters within reasonable parameters (I've hoped that particular update was in part a way of "testing the waters" for new character art.)
Edited by Elasmet on 1/19/2012 8:19 PM PST
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85 Gnome Warrior
5965
So my question is, Why not transfer *more resources to getting new player models out if a whole lot of people want to see them right this moment? Do we as a people need to gather 1 thousand signatures to make this happen or is it a "Too bad, soo sad" situation?


Sutei - Daggerspine

It's absolutely not a "too bad" situation, Sutei. I know the concept of us having near unlimited resources to throw at whatever we want to is intriguing, but it's just not the case. We don't have an army of artists on layaway that we can transfer onto a project.

Just the same, we don't necessarily want to exponentially expand the head count of the art team to ensure a specific project gets done. There's a synergy we strive for on each of our development teams. In fact, we go to pretty great lengths to vet applicants whenever hiring for a new position. We need to know our iterative design philosophy and our core values are shared. So, if we were to hire several new artists to get this project finished, you certainly wouldn't see the results of that "right this moment."

Right now it's just difficult to give any sort of estimate on when new models might be available. Whenever a new expansion is in development there are many, many requests for new art assets. We're elbow deep in designing new gear sets, fleshing out the environments, finishing up several new creature models, etc.

If all of this makes you feel that much further away from ever seeing new character models, I can say the project is still a regular topic of discussion for us. We want to figure out the best way to introduce such a feature without shocking a huge chunk of the playerbase that doesn't really think about how their character's features could be improved every time they log into the game.


I don't really like this answer, mostly because it's been a regular topic of discussion for you guys for the last few years.

It's obviously something that the players desperately want, thus I feel it should be of a high priority to work on.

What's even worse is that you continue to hide behind the "We don't want to shock the players with drastic change" excuse, but you seemed to have little problem updating the druid forms, and guess what? that worked out fine. There were no riots, nobody threatened you with death, everybody just carried on as normal with their new models.

I wouldn't even mind the old models if this was still Wrath of the Lich King, but I personally feel that with the quality of MoP graphics the old races look like garbage compared to the scenery around them. When a freaking Bird (Crane), is more detailed than the player character it's time for an update.
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90 Human Mage
9735
01/19/2012 07:26 PMPosted by Killercaitie
If all of this makes you feel that much further away from ever seeing new character models, I can say the project is still a regular topic of discussion for us. We want to figure out the best way to introduce such a feature without shocking a huge chunk of the playerbase that doesn't really think about how their character's features could be improved every time they log into the game.


Pigtail hairstyles for human females.

/tilts head to one side


I would like to see my human female paladin in the female draenei pigtails. kthxbai.
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For Caitie!
I want better beards


pigtail beards for caitie!
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58 Troll Death Knight
515
if you're doing new models then I would like more options like choose height,fat/slim etc...
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80 Gnome Rogue
AnW
11270
01/19/2012 08:21 PMPosted by Aceru
It's obviously something that the players desperately want, thus I feel it should be of a high priority to work on.


No, its a thing SOME players want. I, frankly, don't care. I'm sure a lot of people don't care. If it means that the game is more accessible because of low graphics load, then that's even better.

But that being said, if they were to introduce new models I would rather they take as much time as they need to get it right rather than rushing out some half-baked design filled with bugginess. Or maybe some folks want that so they've got something new to whine about.
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