Inside the Art of WoW Live Stream
Senior 3D Animator Ian Lang and 3D Artist Kenny McBride are sitting down to discuss the wizardry behind World of Warcraft’s art development and animation.


  • Kul Tiran Humans and Zandalari Trolls will be available the week of March 12th.
  • Kul Tiran Human and Zandalari Troll Allied Races
    • The team looked at lore and concept art for the respective locations when starting to design these allied races.
  • Kul Tiran Art Design
    • Tentacles and anchors became a motif for this race.
    • The team wanted the architecture to resemble ships.
    • Kul Tirans have a heavy, practical ascetic.
    • Kul Tirans are seafaring and rustic.
    • Kul Tiran stance reflects their pride is surviving in a harsh environment.
  • Zandalari Troll Art Design
    • The Zandalari have a more angular and regal design.
    • They were inspired by Aztec and Mayan culture.
    • They wanted the architecture to look like it had been build centuries ago.
    • Zandalari culture is not quite as islandish or tribal as the other troll races.
    • They made Zandalari Trolls stand tall to better reflect the more regal and proud attitude.
  • Shape Language
    • The Kul Tiran stance works well because of their size. It doesn't work as well on smaller frames like female blood elves.
  • Kul Tiran and Zandalari Weapon Design
    • Kul Tiran weapons and armor are very militant.
    • Gun axes were a real thing in history.
    • Zandalari weapon design is ornate and regal.
  • Blood Troll Art Design
    • The art design for the Blood Trolls is very gross, ritualistic and macabre.
  • Druid Forms
    • The team decided to use their experience from the druid skin forms from Legion to flesh out custom forms for the new allied races.
    • The Zandalari feral form incorporated inspiration from may dinosaurs and lizards.
    • Breaking the established druid lore felt weird at first, but it may sense for the two races' cultures.
    • Drust magic is a more macabre version of druid magic and so it is reflected in their wicker druid forms.
  • Color Importance
    • The difference between color use in each continent better shows off the culture's ascetic. Gold in Zandalar is much brighter and more regal than the darker more rustic and militaristic gold in Kul Tiras.
  • Stances
    • Kul Tiran stances are more grounded while the Zandalari are more nimble.
  • Miscellaneous
    • Allied races flesh out the world and making them playable broadens the players inclusion in that world.
    • Zandalari Trolls were originally about 10% shorter than the final height.
    • Combat animations are more about visual clarification while emotes allow the artists to showcase the culture.
    • New animations like guard poses, leaning, and carrying cargo makes the cities feel more alive.
    • The art team is very passionate and likes to put things in the game that they and the fans are passionate about.
    • The team decided to make a dwarf paladin mount when they designed the Dark Iron Dwarves.

This article was originally published in forum thread: Inside the Art of WoW Live Stream started by Stoy View original post
Comments 36 Comments
  1. psyquest's Avatar
    How to play it safe. Lets talk about art. Because any other wow subject about the current abysmal state of the game is just too hot to handle.

    Damn...
  1. Corroc's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by psyquest View Post
    How to play it safe. Lets talk about art. Because any other wow subject about the current abysmal state of the game is just too hot to handle.

    Damn...
    How to be edgy in 2019? Complain about world of warcraft.
  1. Sigxy the Lemming's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by psyquest View Post
    How to play it safe. Lets talk about art. Because any other wow subject about the current abysmal state of the game is just too hot to handle.

    Damn...
    Well they haven't talked much about the Art and from what I've seen here arounds, that's the only thing people seem to really like - and it's always worth talking about something positive once in a while.

    I'm still unhappy with how awful the new Nightborne models look compared to the NPC versions, but overall I do agree that the art is still up there.
  1. Unholyground's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by psyquest View Post
    How to play it safe. Lets talk about art. Because any other wow subject about the current abysmal state of the game is just too hot to handle.

    Damn...
    I like hearing about the art side more than the Dev side. I also don't have an active sub and won't until the Blizzard Access service comes out providing access to all their games including wow for like 20$ a month, which will happen or they will be crushed by Game Pass and EA Access which provide far more bang for your buck and Bobby is all about games as a service. WoW holds very little value anymore on it's own at 15$ a month and they know it.
  1. emerik5201's Avatar
    Finally we get a date. That's all I really wanted
  1. Sigxy the Lemming's Avatar
    I actually quite liked this stream. I just wish they could've taken some questions though, but still.
  1. Break The Ice's Avatar
    I like how they admit on the stream that it's a recording. I wonder if the Ion Q&As are as well.
  1. blehmeh's Avatar
    March 12th, just in time for that 6 month subscription deal to expire.

    Oh, and if you want to actually keep your progress and not start the entire expansion over, it'll be another $25 for that race change.

    Weird, almost like this was entirely planned to milk as much money as possible from us.
  1. Averrix's Avatar
    I want to be a Kul-tiran with an anchor for a leg
  1. oltsakka's Avatar
    How many more months is it going to take Blizzard to notice there's something wrong with Explosive Potential and demo lock dps?
    I guess those layoffs are really showing.
  1. Paraka's Avatar
    The highlight of that stream is people demanding the art team to fix and balance the PVP and the azerite systems.

    Cause the same dude whose been looking at scaley ass meshes for the past 6 months totally wears the numbers hat.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sigxy the Lemming View Post
    I actually quite liked this stream. I just wish they could've taken some questions though, but still.
    The problem is people asking anything was either about Vulpera (which, ultimately, is fine for an art team) or anything that is tied to the fundamental mechanisms in the game that's hot garbage.

    I would have loved to asked how the Vulpera and the PC creation system affected how they look at future non-playable race design going forward.
  1. Aeula's Avatar
    So 13th for EU then?

    My sub expires on the 4th, guess I'll take a bit of a break since I'm just about out of content right now.
  1. Bumbac's Avatar
    So what about those class accessories from WoD era and expanding the idea beyond artifact skins?
  1. MakeMeLaugh's Avatar
    Congratulations! Over 6 months using Zandalari as a bait, that's an achievement right there.
  1. Daemos daemonium's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by psyquest View Post
    How to play it safe. Lets talk about art. Because any other wow subject about the current abysmal state of the game is just too hot to handle.

    Damn...
    They have already had Q&A’s for the story and state of the game, what are you on about?
  1. Daevied's Avatar
    Finally a date, something to look forward in march
  1. Nerovar's Avatar
    Someone tell them that slapping an anchor on every single item on Kul Tiras to make sure everyone knows they're seafarers is a good way to make your art team look like a group of clowns. Guess it's part of their "practical aesthetic".
  1. vilememory's Avatar
    No one is allowed to be happy, everything is still crap. This is not the place for positive comments or constructive criticism. This is the place for bitter anger and bemoaning the state of the game. Everything was better in Vanilla and only in Vanilla, including the graphics and art.
  1. melzas's Avatar
    I appreciate WoW artists, they do great job and never dissapoint.

    With that said, this interview was useless...
  1. Archmage Alodi's Avatar
    Exactly 6months after ship offer was announced. Seems convenient for them.

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