March 22, 2012
World of Warcraft To Go Mobile?
World of Warcraft (WOW) may be moving onto mobile devices such as iPhones or tablet PC´s, according to a BBC News report. Currently the only official mobile app related to WOW is a free Mobile Armoury app that helps players keep track of characters and adventures.
The concern in going mobile is shrinking the interface, John Lagrave told Eurogamer. He said, “Maybe we´ll stumble on the great way to put WOW on the phone – maybe we won´t, but we´re certainly looking into it.”Currently WOW users have to stop gameplay when they step away from their computers. Gameplay could be extended if a mobile app was developed.
Other companies, though, are attempting what Blizzard refuses to do. Gamestring, based in Vancouver, attempted to make WOW run on Android devices. They released an alpha version that ran on an HTC phone with data streaming from servers to a customized touch interface.
It is also reported that WOW is losing subscribers to a new competitor, Bioware and Lucasarts´ Star Wars: the Old Republic, which is a new massively multiplayer online (MMO) game. The new game has already attracted more than 1.7 million new subscribers with gamers playing at least 4 hours per day.
Lagrave told Eurogamer,” Of course people are trying Star Wars – our development team are trying Star Wars! I´m one of the few people who´s still playing it actually, but yeah we´ve seen a dip in subs. It certainly has to at least be attributable to the Old Republic, but it´s also attributable to people who want to wait and get Mists of Panderia, so it´s not surprising.”
In order to compete with the newcomer, Blizzard started offering 20 free WOW levels and is considering extending the trial offer. Lagrave adds that he expects a rebound in customers when they release the new expansion pack The Mists of Panderia which features a lost island filled with panda bears skilled in martial arts.
WOW has no plans to change from the subscription model that they currently use. According to Lagrave, “Right now we´re very happy with the subscription system with World of Warcraft. We think it works very well.”