Step aside, Niantic. If circulating rumours are to be believed, Blizzard is bringing a Warcraft experience to mobile that’s going to take what Pokémon GO achieved one stage further.
However you may feel about the rising popularity of mobile gaming (and that’s one heckola of a controversial topic right there), there’s one thing nobody can deny: it can be a money-spinner like no other. Take Fortnite on iOS, for instance, and the absurd $300 million it made in 200 days on the platform. That’s one powerful source of microtransactions, and we all know how much developers and publishers love them some microtransactions.
Mobile gaming is a huge business, for sure, but is it a surefire route to Scrooge McDuck-esque sacks of cash? Absolutely not. The recent announcement of Diablo Immortal was… well, it was a horrible debacle, that’s what it was. While developers are flocking to mobile gaming, with the likes of Assassin’s Creed: Rebellion and Harry Potter: Wizards Unite on the horizon, they’ve got to remember to tread very carefully in the process.
Blizzard, however, aren’t about to shy away from the challenge. As we reported earlier this month, they’ve committed to making mobile tie-ins for a range of their IPs. Not only that, they’ve promised that some of their ‘best developers’ are working on them.
There’s no saying whether anything can be salvaged from the Diablo Immortal situation yet, but in the meantime, how about a mobile take on Warcraft?
During a recent lengthy feature about the past, present and future of the Diablo franchise, Kotaku dropped an interesting little nugget of (as-yet-unconfirmed-officially) information. Speaking of Blizzard’s natural inclination for an enjoyment of mobile games (competition over the Pokémon GO gym at the centre of their campus is apparently fierce), the report stated:
“The natural extension of that was for one of Blizzard’s incubation teams to develop a Warcraft version of Pokémon Go, which is in development for smartphones now.”
This all stems from the team’s admiration for Pokémon GO and everything Niantic has done, Kotaku continue, but they also want to exceed that: “People who have played the Warcraft mobile game say it’s also got a lot more to it than Pokémon GO, including single-player mechanics.”
While it certainly sounds as though Warcraft mobile is becoming a reality, we haven’t heard anything from Blizzard themselves just yet. If so, though, let’s hope it does shape up to be a substantial offering, and doesn't get the same sort of reception that Diablo Immortal did.