World of Warcraft players have split feelings about flight restrictions within the new Warlords of Draenor expansion. Many players had hoped that future expansions and patches would allow for the use of flying mounts. However, lead WOW designer Ion Hazzikostas has dashed all those hopes in a recent interview about the future of World of Warcraft play.
Ion Hazzikostas spoke with Polygon about what the future holds for World of Warcraft game play and specifically discussed the controversial move to make the newest zone, Tanaan Jungle, a no-fly zone. Ion says that game designers have been discussing how flying has changed game play as whole for World of Warcraft users and feel that it has “detracted from game play in a whole lot of ways.”
“Having looked at how flying has played out in the old world in the last couple of expansions, we realized that while we were doing it out of this ingrained habit after we introduced flying in The Burning Crusade, it actually detracted from gameplay in a whole lot of ways. While there was certainly convenience in being able to completely explore the world in three dimensions, that also came at the expense of gameplay like targeted exploration, like trying to figure out what’s in that cave on top of a hill and how do I get up there. It made the world feel in many ways much smaller.”
Ion notes that flying detracts from all the elements that designers intend for users to experience during quests. It was noted that the removal of flight was initial a trial. The design teams had planned to reintroduce flight in later expansions or patches but decided that they liked the game better without flight. It provided more opportunity to experience the world they created in its entirety without skipping aspects of the game by utilizing flying mounts.
Though the design team has been happy with the removal of flight from Draenor, not all gamers are happy with the move. A Battle.Net forum post indicates that players seem split on the decision. Some note that they will no longer play the game if flight is not allowed with others claiming the gaming experience is better without it. During the discussion, a WOW community manager notes that the decision was not something the team took lightly.
“During Patch 6.2’s development, we continued to discuss how flight would fundamentally change the way players experience all of Draenor’s ground-based content, and carefully weighed that against the benefits flying would bring to the game. Ultimately, after much deliberation, we came to the conclusion that the world of Draenor would simply no longer provide the experience we envisioned it if we were to reintroduce flight in this expansion.”
Therefore, for the time being, it appears that World of Warcraft designers have no intention of adding flight or flying mounts back into the game. How do you feel about the move to ground all characters in the game? Will you continue to play WOW if flight is not reincorporated into the game?
[Image Credit: WOW]