World of Warcraft

Buildings often look nothing alike from the inside and outside in many cities of WoW

wow3 - Buildings often look nothing alike from the inside and outside in many cities of WoW

I just hearthstoned into the Snug Harbour Inn at Tradewind's Market in Boralus like usual as I have done for the entirety of the expansion, went out and stood there right in front of the Inn for some time going through my very stuffed bags. But I'm sure that everyone of you has experienced these moments where you are struck by some little details in a picture or a game that you never really noticed before. When I have the time WoW is just full of these situations for me.

So as I closed my bags after discarding some useless items I looked closer at the Inn itself and I marveled at the beauty of the building with it's many windows and it's cosy look from the outside. In that moment I wondered about what the actual inside of the Inn looks like because so far I really didn't bother about it as I had no real reason to look up the second floor or look closely at the inside of it.

Snug Harbour Inn at Tradewind's Market from the outside with some players and me in front of it for scale.

As I marched back into the Inn in expectation of a similar cosy look on the inside of the Inn I came across the first thing that made me wonder. From outside it seems like the window should be on the same size and height as the door. But when you are inside the window is way higher and doesn't match it's outside appearance at all. What a bummer!

Inn from the inside on ground level with window on the left. Clearly above the door.

Well, not a big deal I thought. It's only one window and they probably did that for some aesthetic reason because it would look weird from the inside if the window was on the same level as the door and on top of that you can't see through it anyway. So I went upstairs already with a feeling that I might find something similar here. But the reality was a lot more disappointing than what I expected.

First floor of the Snug Harbour Inn with a view to the frontal side of the building.


Well what's to say here. I expected at least some windows and some kind of banquet table on the first floor of an Inn that looks quite large from the outside as we saw on the first picture. In contrast to the ground level window issue there were no windows at all on the first floor. The room doesn't even look like it belongs to an Inn. It just has some bookshelfs, barrels and chairs scattered around but is overall pretty empty and actually a waste of space from a practical side of things. It's only purpose is to lead to the next small room with three beds in it.

I know this room was probably visited by only a handful of players throughout the expansion because it lacks any gameplay interaction, so why bother with interior design. But why did they include a second floor anyway when they don't make it look like it belongs to the Inn beneath. They could've just copied and pasted some tables there from below and it would have been a lot more believable.

Here's a picture of the interior design from below which looks as cosy as one would expect from an Inn.

I did some research around Boralus and other cities like Stormwind and sadly there are only very few buildings that have matching exterior and interior design, especially regarding window placement. Either the art team didn't bother about things like that because they aren't going to be noticed by most players or buildings are designed by different people or even teams and in the end everything is put together and then there was no time to match those things. I have absolutely no clue about game design so I am just asking myself here how processes like this might be going when buildings are designed. There are some buildings that have almost perfect matching interior and exterior like the auction house in Stormwind or some garrison buildings in Draenor. Maybe these buildings need to have some long term gameplay value to qualify for the extra design effort? But don't get me wrong here, I definetely don't want to bash the work of the art team here. They did an awesome job with Boralus as a whole and the city has plenty of unexpected level of detail.

Anyway I just wanted to share this way too long post with you so that you now have the same itch to inspect some buildings from inside and outside while rushing through the world 😉

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