One of the biggest issues many players have had with the World of Warcraft development team over the past several months has been the lack of communication regarding patch notes, class changes, system alterations and more. Last week, new WoW Game Director Ion Hazzikostas indicated that things would be changing under his watch and that more communication between developers and the community would be a priority.
Late yesterday, Josh "Lore" Allen took to the World of Warcraft forums to give the devs' perspective on various means of communication and their efficacy in getting out information that is both informative and relevant. Allen discussed Twitter, live Q&As on Twitch, website interviews, and the team's forum presence:
On the forums: I actually completely agree with you here. Our forum presence sucks. It's a big issue that we're working to fix. That's part of why I'm here, posting this, and will continue to be around these forums as much as I can. Resolving this issue will take some time - if it can ever be completely resolved - but we're working on it. It's worth mentioning that part of the issue - the general lack of dev posts - has been because they've been focusing as much of their time as possible into working on the game. Part of trying to keep patches coming at a good cadence means we need all hands on deck to get the work done, which means less time for the dev team to spend on the forums. That in turn means that, when the devs do get time for the forums, they spend the vast majority of it just reading, so they can absorb as much feedback as possible. So, the community team (including myself, but many others as well) need to step in to fill that gap, in a way that doesn't make you go "Ooh, a blue post! Ugh, it's just a CM." We haven't been, but we're going to.
Later in the World of Warcraft thread regarding communication, Allen further explains why the team doesn't make multiple Twitter accounts for more specific topics (i.e. classes, PvP, dungeons, etc.) as it is felt that offers "too many channels" for people to follow at once.
With specific regard to the lack of PTR patch notes, something the community clamors for, Allen indicated that publishing PTR patch notes is a "tough situation for us to solve" and that patches in Legion are more "experimental and incomplete". Publishing the PTR patch notes, Allen writes, "feels a lot more final than they really are".
Our approach for 7.1.5, then, was "let's focus on what it'll be when it's done" - that was clearly the wrong choice. Official PTR Patch Notes might not be the answer we need, but we definitely need a way to keep you more informed of what's happening, especially for class changes. Even something as simple as "Class Notes for PTR Build ABCXYZ" might fill the gap.
You can read more by following the link above including player reaction to Allen's thoughts.