Blizzard says negative fan feedback won’t divert the course of its storytelling in World of Warcraft

    
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Sometimes a statement can be both the right and wrong thing to say at the same time, and if you’re thinking that sounds like something you’d see from Blizzard with this past week… yep, you’d be right. As part of a keynote at Reboot Develop, Blizzard’s director of story and franchise development noted that the company doesn’t allow negative feedback from fans to derail the story planned for World of Warcraft, instead focusing on making fans happy but not giving in to negative pressure.

On the one hand, this is a good thing because it means that the company doesn’t listen to the sort of person who’s inclined to get angry that a story is all about Jaina and Sylvanas on account of them both being ladies. On the other hand, this is a bad thing because it also means not listening to feedback that the story being told with those ladies might just be an absolute garbage story. So it might not actually be the best color on the presently beleaguered game narrative.

Source: VG24/7
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mpandu.nky

Working in a market research agency with a few gaming companies as clients, I’ve come to realize that the results of focused groups & surveys can often contrast what’s vocalized in forums & comment sections.

One plausible reason is because forums & comment sections are dominated by very vocal players, which may or may not represent the larger player base. Non-English speaking markets, for example, don’t voice out their opinions as much as US players. And I’ve been surprised again and again of how different their needs are vs. English speaking markets.

I don’t know – maybe Blizzard’s done their research.

semugh
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semugh

the loud minority lol…

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Bluxy

what good is the story if no one is playing/dont have a medium to tell it in….
Better off writing a book instead of making games blizz

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Schmidt.Capela

On the one hand, this is a good thing because it means that the company doesn’t listen to the sort of person who’s inclined to get angry that a story is all about Jaina and Sylvanas on account of them both being ladies. On the other hand, this is a bad thing because it also means not listening to feedback that the story being told with those ladies might just be an absolute garbage story.

Reminds me of the all-ladies Ghostbusters. Yeah, people defending that movie — including at least one actress in a leading role — played the “everyone attacking the movie is a misogynist” card, but that doesn’t change the fact it’s so bad a movie that much of the franchise fanbase would prefer to forget about it, like Highlander 2.

For what it’s worth, from a story quality point of view focusing exclusively on girls is as much a trap as excluding girls; doing either one without a very good justification just harms the story quality. Also, defending a bad story just because it has female leads is actually counter-productive if your objective is to have more female-led stories, since that kind of misguided defense mostly serves to make audiences correlate bad stories with female leads.

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Vargas12312

Oh look a click bait title from Massively that shortens the actual quote into something else entirely.

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Wakkander

It is Blizzard’s story to tell, you are free to write your own fanfic and believe it to be the superior version, but you have no right to tell them that they shouldn’t tell their story their way.

There have been numerous times I’ve felt that writers have made mistakes, just look at Star Wars, I personally have my own ideas of how the second in the new trilogy could have gone that would have made for what I consider a more compelling narrative. Also I wouldn’t have made a Even-Bigger-Death-Star for the first one, but I digress. Point is just because I don’t like it doesn’t mean I have the right to tell them to change their story. It is THEIR story, much as I might feel invested in it, it isn’t mine.

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Anthony Clark

That’s right.

Now we have it confirmed that Blizzard doesn’t give a crap about the players.

I always thought that a business was supposed to actually care about the customer.

Guess I was wrong.

This is why I quit WoW. Don’t miss it now after this.

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Frank White

Actually, no, nothing has been confirmed. This is taking what was said out of context, and you obviously didn’t follow the last link in the article and read on. If you had of, you would have read that George Krstic, Blizzard’s director of story and franchise development, said this: ““You’ve got to clear your mind, focus your mind and do good work. Do we listen to our players and our fans? Absolutely. But also we try not to let that distract us from our end goal of the expansion or the new patch. We have a plan. We are listening. But also those voices can get pretty loud out there.”

And who in their right mind doesn’t have an idea of what he’s talking about when he mentions those “loud” voices out there? The internet is being taken over by generations of emotionally stunted individuals (studies literally show them to be less mature than people of the same ages in previous generations), who spend most of the lives online and have next to no real world experience and know only one way of coping when things don’t go their way: have a temper tantrum. ;)

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Jack Pipsam

Honestly, after they pretty much ditched the Pandarian storyline half-way through in favour of more orcs, I gave up kinda caring a bit.
They didn’t stick to finishing their story then and I somewhat doubt they will by the end of this arch.

Remember when the Li Li storyline was going somewhere? A graphic novel, novella, a series of short-stories all had to be the groundwork for something, with little hints dropped throughout of something huge with the Naga. Just forgotten along with a millon other storylines in the world.

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rosieposie

The only reason for this is that their much praised cinematics team take roughly a year to come up with a 4-5 minute long story cinematic. The writers would not dare to pull a rug out from under the cinematic team and tell them that the cinematic they have worked on for past 9 months has to be shelved ‘because what we wrote is total liquid shit’.

Celestia
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Celestia

Doesn’t Blizz have a recent yet ongoing record of ignoring beta feedback and releasing expansions and patches full of bugs?

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traja

I can kind of understand this having read what the nature of the feedback tends to be with BfA. Still though that shouldn’t be an excuse to ignore all criticism because there are legitimate ones too.

Personally I don’t care enough about the story in WoW to be bothered by it being bad. It is too hyper fantasy for my tastes. Magic in Warcraft is so absurd that it is impossible to understand what the limits of possible solutions to problems are.

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Wakkander

Magic tends to be something in fantasy (or scifi depending on what you include under magic) that I always felt must be used with restraint. There must be logical limits or rules, or it all serves is to make everything fall apart with gigantic plot holes. Magic in Harry Potter, or other childrens stories can largely get away with it, and it often serves to be way for the author to reach a desired outcome without having to potentially earn it through clever writing.

I played wow to the then level cap with draenor, played through warcraft 1-3, and I have no clue what the limits, costs, restrictions are on magic, if any beyond whatever macguffin was tossed about. Much less why every single mage knows almost the exact same spell list.