Skip to main content

World of Warcraft on iPhone Still a Possibility, Says Blizzard

Full-blown MMORPGs on mobile devices like the iPhone or Android tablets are becoming more common, the most popular of which is Gameloft's World of Warcraft clone, Order and Chaos Online. But there's no question that fans of the popular PC offerings wouldn't mind a version they could slide into their pocket and play on the go, picking up where they left off without streaming the entire desktop. For subscribers to World of Warcraft, a mobile version is still a possibility.

While visiting Blizzard's HQ last week, Eurogamer spoke with Senior WoW producer John Lagrave about bringing the popular MMORPG over to Apple's coveted smartphone. "Here's your platform, you've got to put an interface, what do you do? So yes we have [looked into mobile] and we always are," 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."

What's surprising is that the conversation didn't cover the iPad or any other tablet. With a wider canvas, MMORPG developers could seemingly cram more hotbars and windows into the UI, especially on the larger models, allowing for an experience similar to the PC versions. Yet games like Order and Chaos were built from the ground up with smartphones and tablets in mind, so squashing World of Warcraft's UI down into a handheld form factor is undoubtedly no easy feat.

"We won't do it until we think it's decent," he said. "But it's interesting and the world is evolving towards that little handheld device - I'd have fun on it, that's absolutely the case. It would be foolish for any game developer to not be looking at that and we're not - we don't think - we're foolish! So we certainly look at that, but we just haven't solved it. What we've done with WoW on mobile devices is very simplistic: view the armory, you check your auctions - not just on mobile but also on web."

He said that once the team has "an epiphany," everyone will know.

Outside of bringing the full-blown MMORPG to the mobile environment, there's still a possibility that certain playable aspects could include tablets and smartphones like pet battles. "You can look at fishing and say, 'Is fishing tailored to being on a table or on a mobile?' That would be awesome, right? You're sitting at the airport and think 'I'll just go fishing'. We certainly look at pet battles too, but right now we're focused on PC - that's our bread-and-butter, PC and Mac," he said.

Would Blizzard gain more subscribers if World of Warcraft was natively playable on smartphones and tablets?

  • samuelspark
    ..... No comment.
    Reply
  • SaucyRMD
    Kids on tablets/smartphones playing MMO's in school = gg
    Reply
  • sporkimus
    WoW on a mobile device will require movement keys and a "I win" button. That pretty much sums up requirements for WoW these days.
    Reply
  • kooldj
    attack spike attack spike!!!!

    *wife calls*

    FFFFFFUUUUU
    Reply
  • memadmax
    I gave up on wow when I played the same raid about 20 times in one week(10 85's)

    Yea, it's done for me... pvp is no good either, you have to be high on meth to keep up with it....
    Reply
  • icemunk
    memadmaxI gave up on wow when I played the same raid about 20 times in one week(10 85's)Yea, it's done for me... pvp is no good either, you have to be high on meth to keep up with it....
    Ritalin works too.. though I suppose that still is "meth"ylphenidate
    Reply
  • g00fysmiley
    sporkimusWoW on a mobile device will require movement keys and a "I win" button. That pretty much sums up requirements for WoW these days.
    most classes have a 5-6 key rotation for max dps in thier spec, with other moves or trinkets thrown in for optimisation. provided you gave an auto run key and a side bar for your moves or a bluetooth controler I think it could work. for me it'd make long trips more interesting but basically would be a novelty, but for some it might be useful
    Reply
  • Kand
    if you can run around yelling "2 gold pliiigz" it`s ok for me
    Reply
  • cknobman
    Actually playing World of Warcraft period is out of the question.
    Reply
  • rantoc
    Wow had its days for sure, however Blizzard now only provides 8 bosses in the end... over and over in raid finder, normal and heroic difficultys.. same booring eight over and over for months.

    What a thrilling game it have become lately - thank you Blizzard for making the subscription so incredible worthwile /end sarcasm

    I rather even do my dishes over and over than do thoose booring eight again and again for months, its Blizzards reluctance to add new REAL content even thoo they get about $120.000.000 each MONTH from their subscribers, shame that Activision got their corrupted grasp on Blizzard, the once great company havent been the same since!
    Reply