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  1. #61
    The Insane Daemos daemonium's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheRevenantHero View Post
    If they fired him, they should really fire Golden next.
    Any particular reason why? Are people still on the “she’s ruining the story” kick even though she has stated multiple times she doesn’t direct the story and mainly just does cutscenes and some story’s/books?

  2. #62
    Quote Originally Posted by DuskSP View Post
    Not surprising.

    I can't imagine trying to carry this game if you had a soul or were not fresh to the industry. I'm sure the new guys are excited.

    But man shadowlands is a beautiful beautiful game... with near mobile levels of game play now.

    You will never be challenged unless you seek it out.
    You will never be surprised.
    You won't get excited over stats much.

    It's bums me out. After legion being semi decent at certain points... I was hoping we'd get another decent one but if you take away the flashy graphics... its BFA levels again.

    I know its still early and people will go raiding isnt out and not many people are 60. Thats fine and I'm sure they will be fun the first few times. I am talking from a core gameplay level that is in every aspect of the game at all times.
    The thing is, it's very difficult to judge an expac until a few months in.
    But, i will admit, after 2 zones cleared, i am not impressed. It seems discounted, by the numbers stuff. Actually, it feels like a side story cause so little of relevance happens. Just a lot of lets say "cameos" for the sake of it. No big delving into backstory, who these chatacters were and what our character was to them.

    Yeah, i've been underwhelmed. But, of course, this is just the release part. BfA had a really cool release part in my opinion. But the later game was not so great.

    The impression i have of Shadowlands so far is that it's small and side-story-ish. Sylvanas should have been dealt with in BfA. It's a plot thread that has been dragged far too long. I think the end game will be better than BfA and that is important, but i do think it was designed in a pre-bfa era where they thought Legion did everything right, when it didnt.
    So, SL is gonna suffer from the legacy of the previous expansion, and i believe the next expansion will be crucial and needs to bring WoW to a new era. If it's more of the same, i dunno. I even think these SL years will be difficult. We shall see.

    On that note, i do wonder who the next creative director will be, if rumors are true.
    There seem to have been quite a few departures from the team lately and i expect turmoil in the near future over it, but lets see if a new leaf is turned.
    Last edited by Swnem; 2020-11-25 at 06:45 AM.

  3. #63
    Quote Originally Posted by SirCowdog View Post
    Not to mention that I'm pretty sure Afriasabi was one of the biggest people behind the push for WoW without flying back in WoD, in case you needed even more reason for me to dislike him.
    I suspected as much. He's one of the "old guard" I've wanted out for awhile now because he seems team #keepWoWinthe2000s.
    "People with depression score higher on tests of realism. Intelligence is positively correlated with mental illness and suicide. What this indicates is that if the mind understands too much about reality, it wants to destroy itself. Human life is existential horror."

  4. #64
    The Insane Daemos daemonium's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheRevenantHero View Post
    lmfao WHAT?! I don't even know where to begin. All the lore she's written has been utter trash and further pushes the tired idea of "horde bad Alliance good". She also gave worgen TAILS for no god damned reason. I'm not "shitting on a random writer" and it has nothing to do with her gender. Not sure why you had to make it about gender. She's a SENIOR writer at Blizzard. Which means she actually has a good amount of pull. She's really not better at writing than some of the people at Blizzard. I actually think her writing is atrocious and her butchering of lore makes me hate her more. Notice how the lore went incredibly downhill after she was hired...hmmmmmm....
    So she should be fired because she follows the story the actual story leads lay out as well as having a lore flop with rather worgen have tails and some conspiracy theory that she’s pulling the strings and hiding it? That’s a pretty awful reason to fire some one

  5. #65
    Field Marshal Leiandri's Avatar
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    I don't understand why people want Golden to go this badly. I don't think that you've noticed but the quality of moment-to-moment storytelling and dialogue has improved dramatically since she was brought on board. If you're unhappy with the overarching story and lore development (like me) you better take it out on someone actually responsible for that. Like someone in a creative director position, perhaps? Or the lead narrative designer maybe?

    Or do people have issues with her because she's a woman?

  6. #66
    Quote Originally Posted by Eurhetemec View Post
    Why?

    Do you think he's been good for the game? I certainly don't. I've played Blizzard games since 1994, and WoW since NA open beta, and I'm very glad to hear he's gone. He was hired as someone completely and totally unqualified (I do mean totally - no game design experience, no writing experience, no scripting/coding experience, etc.), through pure nepotism, because he was mates with Rob Pardo in an EQ guild. I've never seen evidence that he's done particularly great work, he was just promoted at a rate of knots whilst Pardo was there, and his real promotions stopped dead after Pardo left. I don't think that happened by accident. In interviews he's also come across quite poorly, for my money. and the way he slapped his own name/online name over half the NPCs/items in early WoW is pretty gross.

    Jeffrey Kaplan, who came in in similar circumstances, hasn't had the same career trajectory, and whilst he was an awful troll initially, actually became professional and I don't think there's any reason to believe he'd get the boot, because he learned on the job and became competent. There's no particular sign Afrasiabi did the same.

    Given how quiet this was, Afrasiabi obviously wasn't keen to talk about it, unlike other Blizzard employees. If he'd been fired and felt it was unjustified, it's unlikely, based on his personality, that he'd be quiet about it. It's also possible he quit, or is going to join some other ex-Blizzard company, but it's surprising that hasn't been announced given he left in June.
    Couldn't agree more. WoD was when he took over as the story director (creative director), which is precisely the time that the lore, including how the legion works got completely wonky. Metzen was a born story teller and WoW story telling transitioning to Afrasiabi during or after Cataclysm really shows with the story going down hill since.

    Feels like he treats WoW as his personal fan fiction, where at times it feels he disrespects the story that came before he was in charge.

    "Take the time to sit down and talk with your adversaries. You will learn something, and they will learn something from you. When two enemies are talking, they are not fighting. It's when the talking ceases that the ground becomes fertile for violence. So keep the conversation going."
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  7. #67
    The Insane Acidbaron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shadowferal View Post
    Yea right there with you.
    I was surprised to see a live action movie when we all know they make amazing cinematics and could just as well make a full length feature film with just that. That it fairly flopped with most of us should have told Blizz something.

    The big name back then was EverQuest. And apparently you didn't play that because WoW was a breath of fresh air when it came out.
    Apparently you are making assumptions without any basis. I played Anarchy Online others played SWG and there were a host of other mmo's also Runescape was a big thing back then with it's low barrier entry for systems and internet.

    It was hardly a breath of fresh air as Blizzard copied systems left and right for their MMO, i can't think of anything unique in their first iteration of the game.
    “My philosophy is: It’s none of my business what people say of me and think of me. I am what I am and I do what I do. I expect nothing and accept everything. And it makes life so much easier.
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  8. #68
    Quote Originally Posted by Acidbaron View Post
    Apparently you are making assumptions without any basis. I played Anarchy Online others played SWG and there were a host of other mmo's also Runescape was a big thing back then with it's low barrier entry for systems and internet.

    It was hardly a breath of fresh air as Blizzard copied systems left and right for their MMO, i can't think of anything unique in their first iteration of the game.
    I agree, i played Dark age of Camelot before WoW was released (and a bit of Anarchy Online) and i'd even say Everquest was not very liked by players of all other games because of their raid or die nonsense that sadly was imported over to WoW with Tigole (and the people he brought with him). And i really hate him for that, WoW could have been a much better game if they hadn't hired him.

  9. #69
    The Insane Acidbaron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yriel View Post
    I agree, i played Dark age of Camelot before WoW was released (and a bit of Anarchy Online) and i'd even say Everquest was not very liked by players of all other games because of their raid or die nonsense that sadly was imported over to WoW with Tigole (and the people he brought with him). And i really hate him for that, WoW could have been a much better game if they hadn't hired him.
    Yes and no, raids also played a large part in creating the social bonds. However i found it best in Wrath where the difference between 10 and 25 allowed for creation of social raid grounds next to your main raid group inside a single guild, where the socials often friends or family of more dedicated raiders could piggyback of their experience.

    Later on they turned it into a 10 man progression setting or tried to as we know it failed and completely obliterated that and pushed WoW into a more 'raids are progression only' setting. Something they were moving away from during TBC somewhat with Karazhan and had their best time in wrath, instead of encouraging that they threw away the baby with the bathwater and we had LFR that nobody likes and nobody enjoys further widening the gap between the two groups to the point we know have player rating systems such as raider.io and a large group of the game population focussed on things like "meta class rating" without understanding it correctly.

    At least that's my opinion and perhaps a bit too nostalgic to the wrath days.

    Mind you Anarchy Online also had raids but as you know they were fairly accessible although zergfests, unless you were an asshole and the raidbots banned you making it so you were shit out of luck. However you could also gear fairly decent through crafting pre-Shadowlands (yep same name expansion) and getting well geared and tweaked out often took a long time of planning due to their equipment and implants/symbs requiring only 80%(?) of the stats to remain 100% effective.

    Anarchy Online and Funcom in general always had in my opinion great ideas and often went in against the grain sadly execution and bug squishes is where they fell short , because if you try new things you often run out of time and money to finish it all up.
    “My philosophy is: It’s none of my business what people say of me and think of me. I am what I am and I do what I do. I expect nothing and accept everything. And it makes life so much easier.
    ― Anthony Hopkins

  10. #70
    Quote Originally Posted by RoKPaNda View Post
    Cool. Blizzard needs as much fresh blood as they can get
    Except for the art team. Those guys need a fat bonus every time they knock it out of the park...again.
    Last edited by SirCowdog; 2020-11-25 at 10:11 AM.

  11. #71
    Quote Originally Posted by Zeanix View Post
    wasent he at the last blizzcon?
    No, not at all. He had no stage presence which was very unusual and everything story was handled by Steve Danuser.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by SirCowdog View Post
    Except for the art team. Those guy need a fat bonus every time they knock it out of the park...again.
    Some of their best artists are fairly new.

  12. #72
    Spam Assassin! MoanaLisa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Verdugo View Post
    While Afrasiabi getting the boot is great news, the replacement doesnt exactly give much hope.
    Quote Originally Posted by SirCowdog View Post
    As much as I agree with you about Afrasiabi leaving, do you think his replacement is really going to improve things? Change them, certainly. But not for the better, I think.
    No, I don't. They generally promote from within or hire someone they know will fit in. It's a very closed system. At a certain level it insures quality and is a not at preserving as much continuity as they can manage. At other levels it sustains and encourages conservative design. Then there's the whole 'design by consensus' thing they do. That's design by committee and it's not a small committee at that. You're never going to get a committee to engage with radical changes. It's bad business at one level due to increased risk.

    They have bigger problems now in that creative design of content and the systems to run it is largely in the hands of people with engineering backgrounds. You've undoubtedly read my rants about that in the past so no need to go through them again. Engineers generally implement things; they are not by nature all that creative although one can always find exceptions.

    For all of that and because Blizzard is a big, slow boat to turn I imagine that not much will change in a successful IP that's been a font of found money for most of its existence.

    Big change in the IP will only happen if they bring in someone from outside who really has something new to say and is given the power to override consensus. That's a huge risk and huge risks are for indy designers. So, no.

    Given everything I've just said, let's remember that Morhaime being gone will be a driver for people to leave. It just happens that way with CEO's like Morhaime. And the effects on how things work given the pandemic are really unknown. That's a very large rock dropped into a relatively small pond given how much will change planetwide. There will be a lot of ripples and it will take time to understand how the business has changed. Just reiterating those last two things. I've beaten up enough on Afrasiabi over the years.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Leiandri View Post
    I don't understand why people want Golden to go this badly. I don't think that you've noticed but the quality of moment-to-moment storytelling and dialogue has improved dramatically since she was brought on board. If you're unhappy with the overarching story and lore development (like me) you better take it out on someone actually responsible for that. Like someone in a creative director position, perhaps? Or the lead narrative designer maybe?

    Or do people have issues with her because she's a woman?
    Golden has been very clear on Twitter and elsewhere that her primary responsibilities are doing dialogue for cinematics and cut-scenes. This notion of Christie Golden being RULER OF ALL STORY is wrong stupid, and primarily based on the idea that she's sold a ton of books, some bad, some middling, some very good, in a number of genres. She is, by far, the best known of the writing team, has done the majority of the novels supporting the game story (written no doubt to a very specific story spec because that's how it works) so some dunderheads assume that she's in charge. It's just a variation of the thing that happens with whoever is speaking for the company at any given time. They get all the shit. Internet fame is a curse.

    Yes, she is a woman. That's plays into it although it's difficult to tell how much.
    Last edited by MoanaLisa; 2020-11-25 at 09:48 AM.
    “We live in a moment where everything immediately seems to default to outrage. There’s a kind of M.O. of either it’s exactly how I see it, or you’re my enemy.”

  13. #73
    I wonder how many people that worked on MoP still work at Blizzard.

  14. #74
    Quote Originally Posted by HitRefresh View Post


    Some of their best artists are fairly new.
    Give them bonuses anyway. ;D


    Honestly though, I can't think of a time where the world and instance environments haven't been S-class good. Sure, here and there some equipment pieces and sets have been....odd. But given the sheer volume that's not surprising.

  15. #75
    Quote Originally Posted by Shadowferal View Post
    Yea right there with you.
    I was surprised to see a live action movie when we all know they make amazing cinematics and could just as well make a full length feature film with just that. That it fairly flopped with most of us should have told Blizz something.

    The big name back then was EverQuest. And apparently you didn't play that because WoW was a breath of fresh air when it came out.
    It was a breath of fresh air because it was a casual, easy MMO where you could actually quest, get useful rewards, and not spend all your time grinding dozens of professions for hours on end to make one item.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by SirCowdog View Post
    Except for the art team. Those guys need a fat bonus every time they knock it out of the park...again.
    Agreed. Spent a while yesterday talking with some folks about how gorgeous Bastion was. The wheat-like golden grass and what is either the grass or angel feather down floating in the sky. Totally gorgeous.
    The most difficult thing for people to do is objectively look at something they don't like and be able to accept that it is not bad, that other people like it, and if it was changed to the way they'd like it that other people would not like it and want it changed back. The second most is to receive something they didn't want or ask for and be grateful for it, not immediately demand what they wanted instead.

  16. #76
    Quote Originally Posted by MoanaLisa View Post
    .

    Big change in the IP will only happen if they bring in someone from outside who really has something new to say and is given the power to override consensus.


    Given everything I've just said, let's remember that Morhaime being gone will be a driver for people to leave.
    I'm not so sure. How many times have we been told by Blizzard the "The team was very split on this decision"? I have to wonder how so many of the veterans(and their associated design philosophies and beliefs) leaving will influence future decisions of a controversial nature.

    As you said, a lot of engineering background people might fill those vacancies. But I lean more towards the old Steve Jobs quote about why companies fail. Maybe that's just being pessimistic, but I think it's the more likely scenario.

  17. #77
    I would agree with the OP that this seem suspicious. To be completely honest i think it's not far off the final nail in the coffin if Alex has gone.

    Like him or loathe him, he worked on story & development under the tutelage of Chris Metzen for a long ass time. Alex was responsible for the creation of Garrosh Hellscream in TBC, and then utilising him further in WOTLK/Cataclysm. Ok there could be some grievances about MOP Garrosh, but the story through TBC-> Catalcysm was a great arc for a young designer.

    From WOTLK onwards he seemed to be Metzen's right hand man in terms of story development, and although there are a lot of plot holes (which is to be expected in a game as huge as Warcraft) - i think the overall story of the game has been pretty decent throughout it's life. WOD was brilliant lore-wise bringing some characters from the old game in to the fray, it was just the gameplay that let it down.

    Legion again was brilliant lore-wise, i wasn't too happy about Kil'Jaeden getting run over in a mid-tier raid or us fighting alongside Titans, but it was cool nontheless.

  18. #78
    Hey, I'm the Wowpedia editor who added this to Afrasiabi's page.

    Alex confirmed to me in a private conversation that he had left Blizzard in June 2020, and has been semi-retired ever since. This is because we hadn't heard from him in a while (as others pointed out, he hasn't done any interviews in a while, and I haven't seen him at BlizzCon either, seemingly replaced with Steve Danuser on the Q&A etc.) so I got curious, and I had heard from a few developer acquaintances at Blizzard that he was "not around anymore", so I thought it was time to catch up.

    I didn't ask for the exact reason he left as I didn't want to be too insensitive. I did ask if Blizzard planned to make an announcement at some point though, but he said he had no clue. I also asked if he planned to make any interviews himself, but he's not, at least not for now.

    This was a couple weeks ago.
    I shared this on the Wowpedia discord first because, since his LinkedIn was gone (and had been gone for a while), I obviously couldn't use my private conversation as a source on Wowpedia (we only accept publically available sources on the wiki, otherwise anyone could make up stuff like "my cousin is friend with Kotick!"). However a few days later I had access to his LinkedIn again, so I was able to use that link as a source (although it seems not everyone has access to his LinkedIn page?) in order to update Wowpedia.


    From what I understand, Steve Danuser is essentially the new Metzen (and also the new Afrasiabi, 2-in-1!) and the "keeper of the vision" for Warcraft. He will likely get a new title reflecting this more accurately soon.
    Last edited by MyMindWontQuiet; 2020-11-25 at 10:56 AM.

  19. #79
    Immortal SL1200's Avatar
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    good, i'm glad he's gone. can we have our flying mounts back? wasn't he the big guy who wanted to remove flying? good riddance.

  20. #80
    Quote Originally Posted by Acidbaron View Post
    That's your opinion, i didn't find vanilla anything special compared to other MMO's out at the time.
    you mis-understand me if you think I'm just referring to wow. I am referring to the whole franchise. When I say earlier works, I'm looking at the RTS series that started it all. Warcraft, not just wow.

    And Metzen isn't a professional trained writer either, and yes he started messing up a lot of his own lore with inconsistencies. His colleagues didn't properly support him by hiring professional, world class writers as their franchise shot to global fame and their other departments rose to meet the challenge. The story team and elements in the game continued vastly underdeveloped - the quest pane hasn't even been updated, and it wasn't till cataclysm we started seeing more interactive ways of giving quests, which really didn't take off till WoD. Meanwhile, art, systems, and all the others had already gone through several evolutions and upgrades.

    However, it's not to diminish what they did, I continued playing long after the enjoyability factor in the story tanked and the errors rose with too tiny increments of progress... which shows that despite the bad, there was a lot of good

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Shadowferal View Post
    Yea right there with you.
    I was surprised to see a live action movie when we all know they make amazing cinematics and could just as well make a full length feature film with just that. That it fairly flopped with most of us should have told Blizz something.

    The big name back then was EverQuest. And apparently you didn't play that because WoW was a breath of fresh air when it came out.
    Too right

    I suspect they were happy with their gaming success. Although part of me felt that the lore guys like Metzen would have lobbied his colleagues to invest more and branch out. I suspect he tried but wasn't influential enough. And I don't think he was professionally organised enough to handle both the game lore direction and implementation while also seeking to develop their foray into the box office and the small screen.

    For starters the movie came a decade too late, and the timing - oo. in the U.S it was the weekend of that mass shooting in that gay pub/club - dark themed movies never do well in the wake of real life horrors, they are more popular for more ideal times like the 90s where such things were far away from most homes in America.

    Still, the 00s when wow was at its peak popularity in the West, especially the U.S would have been the time to do the movie. And they announced plans in 2006/7 but the fact it failed to materialise indicates to me that Metzen didn't have enough support and/or wasn't organised enough to pull it off. It was a collective failure, if one person has the ballsy/brazen gutsy idea to pushforward and cease the moment, he can't do it on his own without support, especially if he kinda came in to the party a little later than the original founders.

    This is what I suspect anyway.

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