World of Warcraft Dungeon Playtest

The project below outlines dungeon playtest research I conducted, collaborating with the Games User Research team at Blizzard.

Project Overview

A core feature of all World of Warcraft expansions are dungeons. These are a 5-player mode where players work together to defeat bosses, complete objectives, and progress their character.


The goal of this project was to conduct playtest sessions for an upcoming World of Warcraft Shadowlands dungeon, focusing on collecting player feedback and improving the dungeon prior to launch.

Study Preparations

While this study required multiple researchers to accomplish, my role included:

  • Recruiting internal players that fit our target demographics

  • Organizing players into dungeon roles and scheduling

  • Helping players through acquiring game builds

  • Leading play sessions and monitoring player performance

  • Analysis of survey data and dungeon feedback

Playtest Results

  • Creatures in the dungeon were quite over-tuned, where many players needed researchers to use cheats to get them through

  • Designers planned to not allow players to use mounts in the dungeon, but players expected the option to because it was outdoors

  • Boss mechanics were mostly clear, and players understood how to handle them to defeat each boss

  • However, these same mechanics felt very punishing for making a mistake

  • Compared to other dungeons tested, this one showed comparable scores for fun, clarity, and excitement