With World of Warcraft's latest expansion, Blizzard has a firm schedule for the game's content releases. The first raid of the expansion, Uldir, is coming on September 4, 2018. It wasn't always like this for Blizzard Entertainment though. In the early days, the studio was just getting used to developing and operating a massively multiplayer online game.
World of Warcraft launched with two raids, Onyxia's Lair and Molten Core. Only one of those raids was on Blizzard's launch schedule though. Molten Core wasn't actually planned for launch.
"Originally, we thought we would only have time to complete one raid, Onyxia. Molten Core wasn't even on the schedule," said former Blizzard employee and World of Warcraft designer Rob Pardo. "[The raids team] came up with the idea of Molten Core, which is based around a lot of content and art that we already had. They figured out a way to do a full-blown raid dungeon just using or mashing up stuff that we already had."
"Obviously it's very much a version 1.0 of WoW raid game, but back then we were definitely learning what a WoW raid looks like. It was very experimental because we didn't have the ability to put it into the beta, because it was coming in hot. So really, I almost look at our early raids like beta versions of what eventually raids turned into," added Pardo.
The original status of Molten Core is just one of the stories in our upcoming feature article, How World of WarCraft Was Made - The Definitive Inside Story of Nearly 20 Years of Development , which will be published on USgamer very soon. Look forward to it!
In the meantime, you can check out our ongoing review diary for World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth. The road to Battle for Azeroth has been a rough one for Blizzard, with a difficult expansion pre-patch and a number of Horde players being angry at the actions of their leader.