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World of Warcraft team: “Procedural content is totally something we’ve talked about”

World of Warcraft Blizzard

Blizzard are working hard to keep World of Warcraft’s remaining subscribers entertained and to do what they can to attract back those that left. Lead content designer Cory Stockton told Rock Paper Shotgun that one of the hurdles they’re coming up against is that “people just burn through our content so fast.”

Something they’re looking into is procedurally generated content. It would provide the team with means to release content much faster.

“People just burn through our content so fast. If we could build enough content, we would. Procedural content is totally something we’ve talked about. The conversation of procedural and how it’d work in WoW is totally a topic that we’ve talked about.”

They’re still working on a means of implementing it in the game, though. Stockton says that “I don’t think any game can touch our handcrafted content. Our dungeons and narrative, for example. I don’t think there’s remotely any comparison. So I don’t think we’d ever want to replace that and say, ‘Now we can have, like, 20 dungeons!’ But they’re all, like, random.”

So instead they’re looking at it “as a supplement.” They’d bolster their current content with “some crazy procedural supplement. Maybe the dungeon is random, maybe the boss is randomized with different [abilities] – how ever we could do that. But I think that’d be a cool supplement to the handcrafted stuff. Because I think that’s what sets us apart.”

It would be a little excellent if World of Warcraft had a portal into a randomised realm. Imagine running raid after raid in an instance that’s always changing. At that point you aren’t going through the thing by the numbers but having to change up your group’s tactics. You’d need to discuss how you’re going to approach each room and, when it came to bosses, you’d be on your toes, unaware of what their abilities are.

Blizzard have already said that they’re starting to stack up development of their expansions, if they can fill in the gaps between release with randomised content it would be a great keepnet for players.