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Why World of Warcraft players may never get in-game housing

Player housing is a common feature in most MMOs. EverQuest has it. Lord of the Rings Online has it. Even MMOs with no player housing options often have a personalized space set aside just for you and your guild. It’s great to have a personalized space, a place that you can customize and own. But players hoping that this common feature will make its way into World of Warcraft may be disappointed to learn that the game’s producer feels that player housing may never happen.

That doesn't mean that Blizzard hasn't thought about introducing player housing. Speaking to Eurogamer, World of Warcraft producer J. Allen Brack explains that adding player-owned homes has been something the WoW team has been talking about since the beginning. “Player-housing has been on the list of something we want to do even back before the original realm box shipped – it was a feature that didn’t make that. It’s one of those things we talk about every expansion – what would this look like in WoW?”



But Brack doesn’t just want to give players a place of their own to play with, unless it has meaning.
“I don’t think it’s sufficient enough for us in WoW to just say, ‘Hey, we have player housing – great.’ There’s got to be some reason to have that. There’s got to be gameplay behind that, stuff that happens,” explains Brack.

If the alleged leaked production schedule for Blizzard Entertainment is accurate, we can expect a new expansion for WoW next year, and another in 2013. And although Brack doesn’t seem keen on the idea of adding player housing in WoW, he seems confident that the topic will rear its head again when the team is ready to start planning the next expansion. “[Player housing] has fallen off the list of things that we’re willing to tackle on a per-expansion basis I guess one, two, three times now – so we’ll what happens next time,” says Brack. So it seems there’s still some hope after all for WoW players itching for a place (hopefully not instanced and with lots of ‘gameplay behind it’) to call home.

Mar 8, 2011

8 comments

  • BadLadJon - March 9, 2011 7:59 p.m.

    lol me and my bro (both WoW players) said this when TBC came out, "imagine having you're own house in IF or SW, so much wasted space and un-enterable buildings"
  • Camoxide - March 9, 2011 3:28 p.m.

    Come on. Even Runescape has had Player owned houses for years.
  • Robx - March 9, 2011 11:51 a.m.

    @DoctorCrazy It does looks dated, but it's still the game with the largest player base and money making, they of course will squeeze every penny they can until it's players finally get bored or charmed with another game. @Spacegrass There are multiple methods; some just add a building which is the same for everyone, but entering will take you to your own private room, others simply add a teleport to house button which takes you to your own private instance with the house in it, few cases where you are allowed to build it on actual grounds, but others take you to specialized zones where you can build them, which are also divided by channels... There's this parkour 'Freejack' game where hosting a room takes it literally; making a room (to play) takes you to your room (the one you customized), players who join enter this room, get ready and start, so it's kind of cool to check out other spaces as you wait for other players to begin.
  • Imgema - March 9, 2011 9:45 a.m.

    I can't think how "non-instanced" homes will work in WoW. Unless they are going to create thousand (on each server), low-polly, boxy buildings, at least one for every account.
  • Spacegrass - March 9, 2011 5:37 a.m.

    I've never played an MMO other than Warcraft; how does player housing work? Wouldn't making houses for all the players take up a lot of space?
  • NightCrawler_358 - March 9, 2011 2:20 a.m.

    hopefully their parents characters will have room in their basement! ZING! No, but that would be awesome to have houses, but it wouldn't work out very well.
  • razorwiretensho - March 9, 2011 2:18 a.m.

    I don't think most people play WoW to look at it's graphical prowess. The game looked dated when it first came out, compared to what a gaming rig of the time could do...
  • DoctorCrazy - March 9, 2011 2:12 a.m.

    How can they keep releasing expansions for WoW? In 2013 its going to look so outdated, it already is starting to now.

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