What's one of the most powerful game design positions in the games industry today? Executive Vice President of Game Design at Blizzard Entertainment, and the monumental role is filled by Rob Pardo. In this sit-down interview with PC Gamer, Pardo addresses various topics including why PC Gaming is far from dead. An easy position to take considering World of Warcraft has 11 million active subscribers. But Pardo understands the pressures companies face when developing on the PC platform. His line of thinking is that PC gaming won't die, but that it's evolving.
When it comes to decision making and managing 140 creative staff members that work on World of Warcraft, Pardo describes an organic and collaborative process. The team is cohesive and there is no dictatorship over creative control as anyone on the team has the power to veto. Pardo admits that this may sound like nothing is accomplished with so many differing perspectives, but the key to content competition is in the team's dynamics, communication and of course compromise. Blizzard also eschews the monolithic design document. Instead Blizzard's creative process is more iterative and chunks of content are scraped but it pushes the whole team to do better with the overall objective to deliver a better product.
The interview covers various other topics including a disagreement in viewpoints with Raph Koster, and why anyone looking to break into game design should second-think their college education choice if majoring in the specialized field.
[Via WoW Insider]