World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor Interview

AusGamers chatted up Blizzard Entertainment senior art director Chris Robinson at this year's BlizzCon, covering such topics as the success of their Warlords of Draenor expansion pack, their decision to allow players to jump directly to level 90, the possibility of bringing World of Warcraft to consoles, and more. A snippet, as usual:

AusGamers: In the interest of transparency, the game has a bit of an ebb and flow as far as subscribers and the number of people that are dropping off and coming back. Obviously that would generate discussion and testing into ways to boost those numbers again and get people in to play. This is a really roundabout way of asking probably a really common question, but is the console port idea still strictly a no-go, or has there been testing? Is there a whiteboard somewhere in the studio with ideas in that direction?

Chris: No. We're just solely focussed on making it for PC at this point.

AusGamers: Ok, that's a good answer.

Chris: I don't think that we let. at least on the development level, I don't think that we can let numbers influence our decisions, because that's a dangerous road to go down. If you start playing against what is the easiest solution that's going to bring in the most numbers.

AusGamers: ...and not that console would actually be a solution.

Chris: Right, there's any number of things. Was Mists the right way to go? Was Warlords the right way to go? If you're solely going '˜what are the largest number of people that want to play this content?' I think you sacrifice really good ideas and opportunities to do something new and just take a chance here and there, that keeps it fresh and keeps people going '˜that isn't just the same old thing that rehashes the same thing over and over again'. So we typically just try to go with, if we're passionate about it and we sit down in a group and start talking about, like: those Warlord characters are so cool, and they're so core to what we know as the Warcraft Universe, is there any way we could resurrect them? Or something that could just bring that to players who may have grown up with Mists and not know -- unless it's fed to them, this is some of the roots of where this has come from.

Nowhere in that process do we go '˜I wonder if we can get another 20 people to sign up because of this idea', it's only '˜is this cool?', and if it is, then hell yes, let's do this thing; let's go for it.