Warcraft Radio Interview with Chris Kaleiki
Warcraft Radio interviewed Chris Kaleiki, former PvP Developer and Game Designer for Shadowlands.

  • The modern game has so many different ways to gear up, and the challenge for the team is that they want all of these sources to feel rewarding. However, not everything can be an upgrade or players would gear up way too fast.
  • The only way to address this is by either random chance or breaking the system up with a currency for upgrades or supplemental gearing.
  • Chris says that the feeling amongst the team was that BfA was too random, and they conceited that it went too far.
  • The trick is to make sure you learn from past challenges and designs that didn't work out, but not to go too far in the other direction.
  • Chris thinks that they have done a good job with this in Shadowlands for the most part.
  • Chris says that the team would like to think that players are holistic and enjoy using all parts of the game to gear, but this isn't always the case and it's a challenge. Ultimately, it's a question for the players to answer.
  • In Legion, there was a concerted effort to engineer comps in Arena with the PvP system, but it's now more reactionary.
  • Originally, there wasn't a set designer for each class in PvP. When Chris joined, he and some others started to take on focusing on specific classes. Today, it's a hybrid of the two.
  • Today, there has to be a consensus for a lot of changes in the game, which can often take awhile. It might seem like nothing is happening a lot, but behind the scenes there is a lot going on.
  • Unfortunately, sometimes PvP balance can fall in priority. It rises when something is really bad or there is a tournament.
  • You don't want to make too many huge changes before a tournament.
  • In BfA there were a lot of items designed for PvE that affected PvE and the Chris says that the team was more reactionary in their efforts to fix it.
  • A lot of the time it isn't the core classes that affect PvP balance. It's an outlying item. These are done by an entirely different team and sometimes the PvP team doesn't always catch it until it's live.
  • Chris believes having spells do different things between PvE and PvP isn't always easy as you want the game to be easy to understand and accessible. This is a challenge when trying to address balance issues.
  • Chris says the team wants the game experience to be enjoyable no matter who they are.
  • The team really wanted to keep the soul of the original bg maps when they upgraded them. Keeping the same collision detection was a challenge.
  • Ashran's inspiration was to be a PvP zone, and not a traditional PvP map.
  • There was an instance after Ashran was removed where Mike Morhaime was emailed by a woman who's favorite activity in game was Ashran, and didn't want to see it go. There is a lot of different things players enjoy in the game, and they have to be careful when making changes because of this.
  • Ashran was meant to be an endless battleground, and it didn't make sense to have the events in the epic bg rotation. This is why there was a separate brawl version.
This article was originally published in forum thread: Warcraft Radio Interview with Chris Kaleiki started by Lumy View original post
Comments 68 Comments
  1. sephrinx's Avatar
    > The modern game has so many different ways to gear up, and the challenge for the team is that they want all of these sources to feel rewarding. However, not everything can be an upgrade or players would gear up way too fast.

    It's a shame that the only way to gear up is Raiding, and the drop chance is so bad it's insane. World Quests, useless. Covenants, useless. Heroics, useless. M0, useless. M+, useless. Great Vault = 1 item. I've ran 30+ M+ and only got 2 items, one of which I already had.

    > a currency for upgrades or supplemental gearing.

    Dear god, PLEASE DO THIS.

    > learn from past challenges and designs that didn't work out

    lol yeah like that'll ever happen....
  1. Biomega's Avatar
    Chris says that the team would like to think that players are holistic and enjoy using all parts of the game to gear, but this isn't always the case and it's a challenge. Ultimately, it's a question for the players to answer.
    NO IT ISN'T, THIS IS LITERALLY YOUR JOB TO ANSWER.

    Players have zero choice in this. I can't just decide "this week, I'll gear through World Quests", because those items - even when they're available - are absolutely useless. That's not a choice, in any meaningful way.

    This is insulting.
  1. aceperson's Avatar
    why is it every interview keeps sounding like excuses? they keep saying they know whats better for us, try it for years, refuse to listen to feedback, and wonder why people leave.
  1. Darkeon's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by sephrinx View Post
    > learn from past challenges and designs that didn't work out
    To be fair, this is one of those things that should be taken for granted and expected, even before listening to the interview lol

    Next time! Next time it'll really happen, as opposed to being only PR speech.
  1. october breeze's Avatar
    This dude and his entire so-called 'team' were humiliated and demolished by Rextroy for the whole duration of BFA.
    The incompetency of these clowns has been proven in multiple expansions.
  1. shoegazing's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Biomega View Post
    NO IT ISN'T, THIS IS LITERALLY YOUR JOB TO ANSWER.

    Players have zero choice in this. I can't just decide "this week, I'll gear through World Quests", because those items - even when they're available - are absolutely useless. That's not a choice, in any meaningful way.

    This is insulting.
    No, it's not his job to answer. He no longer works for Blizzard. And btw, when he did work for Blizzard, company policy prohibited him from saying much at all.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Darkeon View Post
    To be fair, this is one of those things that should be taken for granted and expected, even before listening to the interview lol

    Next time! Next time it'll really happen, as opposed to being only PR speech.
    How is it a PR speech when he doesn't work for Blizzard?

    Do you realize that he quit the team for the stated reason that he no longer agrees with their vision for the game?

    He plays more classic than retail these days.
  1. Biomega's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by shoegazing View Post
    No, it's not his job to answer. He no longer works for Blizzard.
    You as in designers of the game, not that guy in particular.
  1. Darkeon's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by shoegazing View Post
    How is it a PR speech when he doesn't work for Blizzard?

    Do you realize that he quit the team for the stated reason that he no longer agrees with their vision for the game?

    He plays more classic than retail these days.
    Downplaying the actions and decisions of a former employer isn't a new event, especially if you want to stay in good terms in the industry.
  1. chrisnumbers's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Biomega View Post
    This is insulting.
    Insulted by a video game.
    Yikes.
  1. Biomega's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by chrisnumbers View Post
    Insulted by a video game.
    Yikes.
    No, insulted by people who think it's the player's responsibility to make sure the loot system is sound.
  1. shoegazing's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Darkeon View Post
    Downplaying the actions and decisions of a former employer isn't a new event, especially if you want to stay in good terms in the industry.
    Except he released a massive YouTube video when he quit explaining why he quit and that he longer agrees with most of the designers at Blizzard

    Your theory about this doesn't make the slightest amount of sense. Not even one iota.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Biomega View Post
    No, insulted by people who think it's the player's responsibility to make sure the loot system is sound.
    Chris Kaleiki worked on classes, not on the loot system......
  1. aceperson's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by shoegazing View Post
    Except he released a massive YouTube video when he quit explaining why he quit and that he longer agrees with most of the designers at Blizzard

    Your theory about this doesn't make the slightest amount of sense. Not even one iota.

    - - - Updated - - -



    Chris Kaleiki worked on classes, not on the loot system......
    i mean it could if he is under the impression that he might want to come back if he can't find something to work out.
  1. chrisnumbers's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Biomega View Post
    No, insulted by people who think it's the player's responsibility to make sure the loot system is sound.
    Nothing wrong with a system that has multiple choices to gear yourself. I think you're twisting words around so that you get to feel victimized.
  1. Biomega's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by chrisnumbers View Post
    Nothing wrong with a system that has multiple choices to gear yourself. I think you're twisting words around so that you get to feel victimized.
    I have no problem with that, if it WAS that. It's not. There has never been more pressure on people to raid, if they want good gear. World quests or whatever aren't competitive, and so it isn't a REAL choice.
  1. chrisnumbers's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Biomega View Post
    I have no problem with that, if it WAS that. It's not. There has never been more pressure on people to raid, if they want good gear. World quests or whatever aren't competitive, and so it isn't a REAL choice.
    The choice is, if you want good gear, go earn it. It's always been that way. Why are you making shit up?
  1. Biomega's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by chrisnumbers View Post
    The choice is, if you want good gear, go earn it. It's always been that way. Why are you making shit up?
    It's not about whether there is a gap or not (there always was, as you say), it's about how large the gap is. And it's pretty damn large right now. To say players get a choice when they made the gap bigger than ever this expansion is just dishonest at best and insulting player intelligence at worst.
  1. Kallisto's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Biomega View Post
    No, insulted by people who think it's the player's responsibility to make sure the loot system is sound.
    And yet when they had the loot system where WQs and other means were more viable people screamed like they were being insulted. They screamed when there were badges because "WE'RE FORCED TO DO IT." this player base has an issue where if there's no gear reward it might as well not exist. When there's a choice to do something to get a gear reward it is no longer a choice but blizzard putting a gun to their head demanding they do it. (Well blizzard doesn't but they act like they do.)
  1. Zyky's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Darkeon View Post
    To be fair, this is one of those things that should be taken for granted and expected, even before listening to the interview lol

    Next time! Next time it'll really happen, as opposed to being only PR speech.
    They've been saying this for a decade, they've still yet to follow through.
  1. Tiwack's Avatar
    Barrage them with suggestions on what we want the game to look like? Got it.
  1. Railander's Avatar
    > A lot of the time it isn't the core classes that affect PvP balance. It's an outlying item. These are done by an entirely different team and sometimes the PvP team doesn't always catch it until it's live.

    what a blatant lie.
    it implies that:

    1) there is an effort to nerf OP things for PvP before it goes live
    2) they don't always catch it before it goes live

    if that was true, please give me 1 single example where this actually happened. i'll be waiting.
    this literally never happened, ever.
    therefore there is no effort whatsoever to nerf OP things for PvP before it goes live, and therefore they never catch it.

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