Hi, I’m Chris Robinson, senior art director of World of Warcraft, and welcome to a special edition of Artcraft focused on an idea that’s still quite early in the inception phase: class accessories. For a long time now, we’ve felt that our character classes could use some more visual customization options, and we’ve heard you might be thinking the same thing. When I play WoW, I see Hunters pulling arrows from thin air, firing shot after shot with no visible clue as to where that ammo is coming from. I’ve heard Druids speak fondly of mystical objects called Idols, and listened to Shamans talk of Totems. And my Paladin seems to have developed a strange hitch in his gait due to the lack of a Libram at his side.
While some of those items once existed in-game as gear for the now-retired “Relic” slot, you’ve never been able to actually see those items on your character. We’ve been cooking up some concepts for how we might be able to bring that sort of class-specific visual customization back in the form of purely cosmetic class accessories—and while we’re not here to herald their imminent arrival, we thought it would be fun to give you a sneak peek at what we’re conceptualizing from an art perspective, and have our item-design guru Owen Landgren give you some insight into how they might work.
Before we show you the goods, keep in mind these are still way early in the design process, and getting them into the game will likely need to wait until after you’ve faced off against the Iron Horde. But this is something that’s been requested so frequently, we thought you might appreciate knowing we’re working to make it happen (eventually). So without further delay, here are a few concepts for you to take a look at!
As you can see, these concepts are all somewhat Alliance focused, at least for now. We’re thinking we’ll have Horde and Alliance color schemes for accessories whenever it makes sense. And while we’re planning on creating the “obvious” accessories for the classes that once had Relics, we have a lot of ideas for accessories we think would be awesome for all of the classes. Don’t let that stop you from sharing your own ideas with us, though!
Now that you’ve gotten a glimpse at what we’re working on in the art realm, here’s Owen to explain the designers’ early thinking on how these might be worked into the game:
“Back in ye olden days of Cataclysm and earlier, the Relic gear slot provided some classes with an additional item that would impart character stat bonuses. We always thought it would have been cool to show these Relics on your character, but aside from the generic quiver for Hunters wielding a bow, the artists just didn’t have time to do the concept justice. We were also faced with some unique design challenges, including questions about how much additional unique artwork would have been required for each new tier of raid and PvP gear. However, once the Relic slot was retired and the visuals could be divorced from gearing mechanics, the idea of bringing these back as a character customization feature became something we talked about more and more.
Our goal with these class accessories is to offer players a whole new path to customizing the look of their character. While you might decide to wear the same armor as your friend, choosing different accessories allows you to communicate something extra about your character. As a Rogue, are you the swashbuckling buccaneer with daggers on a bandolier and stashed up every sleeve? Or are you the poisoner, carrying bubbling, smoking vials filled with terrible concoctions? Perhaps you’re the shadowy figure that lurks in the dark, replete with darts and throwing stars to fell your enemies from a distance? As you obtain new looks, you’ll be able to mix and match thematically—if a particular Hunter gear set looks better with a longbow and quiver than a blunderbuss and ammo pouch, the option is yours. Mix in Transmogrification, and the visual combinations are nearly endless.
“We envision that class accessories will be rewarded from a variety of accomplishments in World of Warcraft. These could be as simple as attaining a new level, or as monumental as conquering a vicious raid boss. We want each player to have access to multiple accessories, but have some rarer accessories that take more effort to obtain.”
—Owen Landgren, Game Designer
Hey there—Chris again. As we mentioned, these are still just some early ideas and concepts, and we hope you enjoyed getting a glimpse behind the scenes. We know a lot of you are excited about the idea of having new ways to customize the look of your characters, and we look forward to sharing more as we continue to make progress. Thanks for reading!
You can follow Chris Robinson and Owen Landgren, as well as World of Warcraft game director Tom Chilton on Twitter.
That should be pretty nice indeed.
Olivia,I tried to improve on Google Translate. Not perfect, but probably a little less confusing.Hello, this is Chris Robinson , Senior Artistic Director of World of Warcraft. We will discuss in this new edition of Artcraft a project that is currently in the embryonic stage of development : class accessories. We have been thinking for a while our character classes lack appearance customization options, and players seem to share this view with us. WoW Hunters shoot arrows that appear out of invisible quivers . Druids speak passionately of mystical objects they call idols , shamans bring to mind mysterious totems my paladin is missing his librams sorely.While these items used to appear in the Relic slot, nobody ever noticed them on their characters. We recently thought about ways to reintroduce this type of visual class customization in the game with purely cosmetic items. And although they will not appear in the game for some time, we decided to give you an overview of our preliminary artistic concepts and asked Owen Landgren , our object design guru, to tell you a little more about their implementation.Before I show you the result of our work , we wish to emphasize that this is only a first concept version and you probably won't be able to acquire these accessories in the game until you faced the Iron Horde. This article's aim is simply to let you know that we already started the development of this feature, which we know is dear to you. So without further ado here are some of our concepts for you to enjoy!As you can see, these are Alliance-only accessories. We are thinking about differentiating them later by applying Horde or Alliance colors if we deem necessary. Moreover, if we intend to create accessories specifically for classes who had a relic slot, we also have big plans for all classes. That said, do not hesitate to send us your ideas and suggestions!After this brief overview of artistic concepts under development , Owen will explain how the design team is planning to integrate them in the game:"At the time of Cataclysm and even before, the relic slot gave some classes an additional item granting bonus statistics. And we thought even then it would be really great if these relics could be seen on the character model. Unfortunately, apart from the conventional quiver of bow-wielding hunters, the artistic team never had the opportunity to further expand on the concept. We were also faced with unusual challenges in terms of design, especially regarding the amount of visuals required for each piece of raid or PvP gear. But when the relic slot was removed and visual appearance could be separated from gear mechanics, we started talking again about the possibility of reintroducing them in the game within the scope of visual customization.These class accessories aim to provide players with a whole new way of customizing the look of their character. For example, even if you decide to wear the same armor as your friend, you will be able to choose different accessories to make your character stand out. Are you one of those buccaneer thieves with a dagger tucked in their belt or hidden in their sleeve ? Or a poisoner who never travels without his vials filled with deadly steaming and bubbling potions? Perhaps that is you, the mysterious figure lurking in the shadows, armed with darts and throwing stars, ready to defeat the enemy from a distance? Each new look will allow you to create your own thematic combination; if you think a longbow and quiver visually suit your hunter better than a blunderbuss and a pouch, you are free to swap. Add transmogrification and visual combinations are almost endless."We would like class accessories to reward players for their achievements in the World of Warcraft , be it for simply having gained a level, completed a major challenge, or struck down a formidable raid boss. Players will have access to a wide range of accessories , but some of the rarer items will require additional effort to acquire. " Owen Landgren , game designerChris here, to conclude. Again, these are merely ideas and preliminary designs, but we nevertheless hope that you enjoyed learning about them. We know that many of you are eagerly waiting to be able to further customize their characters and we will continue to share our progress. Thank you for your attention!
I wouldn't mind seeing a Libram hanging off my pally's belt like I see in paladin artworks.
i cant wait things keep getting better and better with this new expansion
Would love to be able as a warlock to get the skull of gul'dan as an accessory if you compleat the Black Temple.But i think there should be some Race specific accessories to.
give us profession rewards too, and achiev ones (example belt chockfull of vials for alchemy, or a scroll for a scribe, as for the achievement things, have x's head bound yo your belt or shoulders..
Looks like the official English version of the article is up:http://us.battle.net/wow/en/blog/14176224/artcraft-concept-class-accessories-5-20-2014
Hooray the actual English original is up and added! Now you can see the effects of translating a translation (in a hurry). Thanks for being understanding as we did our best to get this to you asap :)
Great, something else to kill the frame rate even more. (Just kidding!)Can't wait to see more.
This is awesome! I'm so glad they are putting forth the effort to do this. As a Hunter, it does look rather "strange" reaching behind me to pull an arrow from a nonexistent Quiver and having said arrow "magically" appear in my hand. Love the concept art too. Keep up the good work Blizz. :-D
Oh! Librams! :D WoD is looking better already-- bravo! I hope warlocks will get grimoires.(here's to it makes it to live)Also, I really hope some accessories will stay one color-- don't really want the option of just red/black-ish librams on my paladin.
Hello There!I Play this game from the early stages of BC and my main char was a mage but i always loved Hunters, their pets, and espesially those quivers with the arrows. Back in the day the arrows were a consumable item with many ranks ( 5 as far as i remember ). If you run out of arrows you are screwed xD. Always loved this piece of realism in the game. After Cataclysm i felt a little disappointment when i heard that they removed Arrows and a little relieved that the chains that bonded hunters with constantly buying arrows from vendors was removed. Now with this idea of cosmetic in mind, I was thinking about an addition to hunters only ( Sorry all other classes ).Death Knights got Rune-forging for enchanting their weaponsRogues can add poisons to their weapons Shamans can enchant their weapons with many different waysWhy not make "Arrow-Forging" for hunters By Arrow Forging i mean 4 things.1) Hunters learn this special Forging type from the scratch ( lvl 1 ) so they can make ammunition for all kind of weapons.2) No restrictions in crafting ( like special crafting mats or daily cds etc ) 3) Fast Crafting and multiple items per craft ( 5 or more ). Of course stacking up to 1000 for minimum storage space capacity.4) This special kind of Forging level up with the hunter and learn new kind of ammunition automatically scaling by some level ( not exactly figured how what level hunter can make either level of ammunition but it's work in progress ) So for example