Kotaku Article - Warcraft Version of Pokemon Go?
Kotaku posted an article yesterday talking about Diablo / Blizzard's mobile plans and quoted supposedly anonymous Blizzard employees mentioning the possibility of a Warcraft version of Pokemon Go. Here are some of the highlights that the article mentions. Most of these highlights are unconfirmed by Blizzard.

  • Warcraft Go?
    • Some Blizzard developers are genuinely excited to make mobile games.
    • A lot of Blizzard developers play Pokemon Go.
    • A natural extension of this was for the new Incubation Team to develop a Warcraft version of Pokémon Go, which is supposedly in development for smartphones now.
    • 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.
  • Diablo
    • Diablo III had a second expansion that was canceled.
    • Blizzard says cancellations show commitment to quality and that they have only released about 50% of the projects that they have worked on in the past 3 decades.
    • Project Hades was reportedly a Diablo game in development that would be more like Dark Souls, an over the shoulder dungeon crawler that was also canceled.
    • Project Fenris is the current incarnation of Diablo IV and the team is optimistic about it. Their art direction is to embrace the darkness.
    • Project Fenris is still early in development and will likely not launch until 2020 or later.
    • They still claim that there was talks to announce Diablo IV at BlizzCon, but it wasn't far enough along in time, yet one dev disputes this.
    • Blizzard is careful to announce games before they are ready now because of what happened with Project Titan.
    • Project Fenris is being worked on by a separate team from Diablo: Immortal known as Incubation.
    • Diablo: Immortal exists because they heard that China really wanted a Diablo mobile game.
  • Activision and Blizzard
    • Blizzard employees say one of the biggest ongoing conversations this year has been cutting costs.
    • Blizzard's response for comment was “Blizzard has been and continues to be a developer-driven company. All of the games we create represent ideas our game developers themselves are passionate about. This is as true for Diablo Immortal as it was for Warcraft: Orcs & Humans, or Overwatch, or any game we’ve ever made. We believe that the best games to make are ones that our developers believe in.”
    • The perception is that Activision is starting to get more and more involved with Blizzard because 2018 had been a weak year for them.
    • The meetings this year was the first time many employees heard things like cutting costs or showing growth.
    • Activision wants to boost Blizzard's content output by adding more developers and release more games on a regular schedule.
    • Mike Morhaime stepping down was a big blow because he was seen as the Anti-CEO and just wanted to make good games and keep employees happy without worrying about profitability.


Preview: Set Sail for Two New Islands

Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Prepare to set sail for two new islands—Havenswood and Jorundall—coming to Island Expeditions in Tides of Vengeance.



Havenswood



Jorundall

Along with two new islands to explore, we’re also adding two new events that heroes might encounter on islands across the Great Sea.

Azerite Ruptures – Upon encountering an Azerite Rupture, you deploy a device to collect it, which will summon waves of Azerite-themed enemies several times before drawing out a rare or rare elite enemy. As these are Azerite-themed creatures, they’re a bit more lucrative than the usual island natives. You’ll also need to be ready to face more than just the creatures summoned by the device—each time this is activated, a map-wide announcement is made alerting the enemy team of the location.

Azerite Extractors – Once you’ve discovered an Azerite Extractor location, you can deploy an extractor which will grant your team Azerite over time. However, this extractor can be overtaken easily by the enemy team; it also draws the attention of nearby NPCs. Once an extractor is deployed by a faction, all players will learn about the extractor's location immediately, so watch out for unexpected guests!

Island Gameplay Evolution
Since the launch of Battle for Azeroth, we’ve continued to iterate on Island Expeditions. In Tides of Vengeance, we’ve tried to shake things up with the addition of Azerite Ruptures and Extractors, add a bit more variety to what you can expect on any given island. You may encounter one of these in place of an invasion, and even invasions will have more variety—for example, you may face Southsea Pirates and Earth Elementals on an upcoming island visit.

We’ve also worked to cluster NPC enemies that inhabit the islands closer together, giving you a bit more space between points of interest (map space permitting), so spawns should feel a bit more organic to the island you’re on.

With these changes, we’re looking to increase replayability and create more unique encounters each time you return. This doesn’t mean you won’t ever see an Azerite Invasion again, but it should no longer be something you encounter every Island Expedition. Perhaps you’ll run into an island that spawns so many giants it becomes a giant-killing-fest. . . .

About Island Expeditions
If you’ve never taken part in an Island Expedition, there’s no better time to sail into the action.

Why We Fight: Azerite is seeping up from the wound that Sargeras’ blade dealt to Azeroth, and an incredible new resource is waiting to be claimed by the Horde, the Alliance, and anyone else seeking power. When you set out on an Island Expedition, you’ll compete for this resource to empower your Heart of Azeroth and to aid your faction in the race to control as much of the world’s Azerite as possible.

Your Mission: You’ll queue for Normal, Heroic, Mythic, or PvP difficulties either alone or with a group by using an Expedition table in Zuldazar Harbor (Horde) or Boralus Harbor (Alliance). Island Expeditions are three-player encounters, and while you can play as any mix of roles, you’ll want to make sure you’re coordinating with the rest of your group to overcome the opposing faction and acquire 6,000 Azerite before they do.

Upon landing on the Island, you’ll disembark from your ship and make your way onto land in search of as much Azerite as you can get your hands on. There are many ways to acquire it, whether it’s by killing monsters, finding treasure chests, defeating the opposing faction’s team, or mining the nodes that will appear around the island.

The Landscape: There’s plenty to explore on this uncharted land, and each island features lots of dynamically generated elements that provide a variety of challenges to overcome.

It’s more than just the Horde and the Alliance interested in the Azerite—you’ll also confront a wide range of different enemies seeking to claim it for their own. As you explore the island, you’ll engage in smaller encounters such as a village of quilboar, water elementals guarding treasure chests full of Azerite, or rare and elite monsters. You’ll also encounter random events from time to time as you explore the island.

To overcome some of these encounters, you’ll need to keep an eye out for beneficial shrines, food, or objects that can aid you. With a bit of tactics and coordination, you’re bound to find some great opportunities to add more Azerite to your count and claim victory.

With extensive combinations of enemies, power-ups, spawn locations, and more, you’ll never know what you’ll come across in your next Island Expedition.

Your Opponents: You won’t be alone on the island, as much as you might hope to be. There are others who want to get their hands on the Azerite, and queuing for Normal, Heroic, or Mythic difficulty will pit you against a rival team of three Horde or Alliance “Advanced NPCs.” These clever rivals will move around and take advantage of the island just like other players would, and each group of opponents has different tactical personalities, from the more aggressive to the more defensive, and will all seeking to claim 6,000 Azerite before you can and take home victory. You never know which team of opponents you’ll face, so be prepared to use all your character’s abilities to overcome them.

For those who choose PvP difficulty, you’ll be pitted against players of the opposing faction to see which team will triumph.

New adventures await in Tides of Vengeance which makes landfall, December 11, 2018.
This article was originally published in forum thread: Kotaku - Warcraft Version of Pokemon Go Rumor, New Islands Preview in Patch 8.1 started by Stoy View original post
Comments 291 Comments
  1. lyphe's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Deathpath View Post
    Why does blizzard want to make mobile games for franchises that have fan bases for PC.
    Because the wrong people got into positions of power within the company, and as a result the primary driver moved from making great games to making money. This is why BA bought King - so they could leverage existing success by pushing their existing franchises into mobile.

    As to why mobile is the money maker, it has to do with the developing markets such as China, India, and other huge population centers where everyone has a smart phone, but few have a gaming PC. It's really sad. Just because there is a huge market in mobile, does not mean Blizz needed to go there. They could have remained king of the hill in high quality PC gaming.
  1. Mayia's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Freaking Frumpy Frak View Post
    We do, they're all the junior devs whom Blizz pays in HotS skins and forces to compete for credit to the company cafeteria so they can eat something more nutritious than cup noodles and Mountain Dew and Blizzard gets away with it because they know working at Blizz is seen as a "dream job" to aspiring game devs.
    I bet that and everything i've heard from being a dev (really blows and)leaves you with really low amounts of free time which wont help them play something like classic, but BFA is much condensed however i doubt very many really play it because its still pretty heavy time investment but it'd be great if we could see some devs start to play the game again, might encourage them to make it better for their behalf and ours.
  1. kamuimac's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Laerrus View Post
    I am not saying that it won't attract new players to Blizzard, but I sure as hell won't be playing it.

    Playing a game on a tiny ass screen with shit controls is not the same as playing it from the comfort of your own home PC.

    So Blizz, go down this bullshit mobile route but you also better be planning to expand into PC based AR/VR, that is where the future of home gaming lies.
    but its perfect to play :

    1)on toilet
    2)on school break
    3)while waiting for X/Y,Z
    4)in work
    5)on bus/train etc

    why do you think people play mobile games ?

    that said initial versions of mobile consoles like gameboy etc had much smaller screens and abysmal graphics yet tell me you didnt play it in school as teenager unless you were adoult there . because i spend ton of hours playing stuff like pokemon red and other games on this and never thought that screen was not big enough .

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by lyphe View Post
    Because the wrong people got into positions of power within the company, and as a result the primary driver moved from making great games to making money. This is why BA bought King - so they could leverage existing success by pushing their existing franchises into mobile.

    As to why mobile is the money maker, it has to do with the developing markets such as China, India, and other huge population centers where everyone has a smart phone, but few have a gaming PC. It's really sad. Just because there is a huge market in mobile, does not mean Blizz needed to go there. They could have remained king of the hill in high quality PC gaming.
    stop spreading this nonsense.

    mobile gaming is beating every other gaming all around the world.

    you know why ? because teens are playing on mobiles.

    who the f... cares about 30 year old dinosaurs . youth are the future of gaming and youth want mobile games.
  1. Merie's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Bisso View Post
    I understand the big CEOs and board director wanting this. But the article says the devs themselves are excited about this. Which honestly, only make me think that maybe Blizzard started recruiting damn casuals that do not reflect at all the Blizzard playerbase.
    Frankly I think that's a load of crap. Same as when Gamestop would be closed on Thanksgiving citing they want their staff to be with their families, up to now when they said they'd open claiming their employees "begged" them to do it.
  1. Zantos's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Chillboy View Post
    Lol how shall they confirm something or not that is not even stated. You gotta squeeze a confirmation or denial out of them with articles Like this one.
    Wait for an actual announcement? You don't squeeze nothing out of them. They will either respond or just ignore it and not care. Seems its the later of the choices.
  1. lyphe's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by kamuimac View Post
    stop spreading this nonsense.

    mobile gaming is beating every other gaming all around the world.

    you know why ? because teens are playing on mobiles.
    Wow, you are indeed living in another world aren't you.

    First, nobody plays mobile over console or pc by choice, it gets played when people are not home or when somebody has no other option.

    Second, if you think teenagers in the West is what's driving mobile growth, then you don't have a very good understanding of demographics, or how they play out globally. The combined populations of China & India alone are 8x larger than the US with most people in those countries having access to smart phones, but not consoles or PC.

    And for the bonus round, 'no', youth are not the most important market, even in the West. Feel free to go make friends with any educated person in marketing and ask them what the core demographic is for profit-oriented gaming corporations ( hint ... those 30 year old males you just dismissed are what companies care about ).

    Cheers and you're welcome.
  1. Eapoe's Avatar
    After my initial question was failed to be answered realistically, here’s a part 2:
    Why is everyone assuming Blizz moving into mobile gaming means they are done making PC content? Last few pages I’ve seen quite a few posts insinuating people are worried about that.
    Did Blizz stop making content for WoW when Hearthstone was released? Did they stop making content for D3, Hearthstone, and HotS when OW came about?
    Blizz expanding into new markets doesn’t mean they are giving up their older market areas; but, considering genres like MMORPGs are slowly on the way out as well as games like D3 having revolving door content it’s clear to see why they want to get into new territory. Especially one as lucrative as mobile gaming where profits are concerned.
  1. IIamaKing's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by sam86 View Post
    do u know any loyal mobile gaming fanbase ? or even good ? mobile 'gamers' are the most casual who don't give a sh8t about anything and do that mostly as to just waste time at work faking working or in traffic
    the only reason mobile gaming is growing is because how cheap it is and u'll make profit because they cost near nothing (not counting marketing, i talk about game itself)
    Pretty sure the mobile gamers of the US are not comparable to the mobile gamers of China. Which, obviously, all this mobile shit is aimed at.
  1. therealbowser's Avatar
    "Blizzard employees say one of the biggest ongoing conversations this year has been cutting costs."

    "The perception is that Activision is starting to get more and more involved with Blizzard because 2018 had been a weak year for them."

    "Mike Morhaime stepping down was a big blow because he was seen as the Anti-CEO and just wanted to make good games and keep employees happy without worrying about profitability."

    I am glad Activision is at least clearing up our perceptions since someone might otherwise assume that they aren't intentionally milking this cow until it's dry. Only the bottom line matters, right? Quality is irrelevant now to Activision, it's fairly blatant that they do not value good game development. It's not shocking that they feel this way; what's shocking is that they are so full of themselves that they would say so as directly and bluntly as this. It's like they aren't even trying to pretend they are trying to make quality games.

    The stuff I have seen lately is more disheartening than anything I have witnessed in Blizzard's entire lifespan (at least, since I was watching; which began just before Warcraft III's initial release). The only thing I can genuinely say that I am interested in or excited in in the near future is Warcraft III Reforged; a remaster of a classic game. Well, there's still that, at least, right? Even Battle for Azeroth--which I have supported directly--is starting to really disappoint and underwhelm me (long before these announcements, the future content in Blizzcon was rather underwhelming and the level of backtracking lately amazes even me--is it good or bad?).

    For the first time since Blizzard and Activision first merged (alongside that forum real ID bullshit) I am genuinely concerned for the future of Blizzard. Not in terms of a belief they will go bankrupt, but rather, that the magic that went into Blizzard is going to die. Their comment as to why Mike stepped down really killed it for me. I feel genuinely disgusted continuing to support them, and I don't normally react overly emotionally to this kind of thing. Blizzard isn't noble by any means but I loved their games and game development style. What's left, now? The future has never seemed so bleak for Blizzard. I sincerely hope I'm wrong...

    PS: With how many people are leaving Blizzard and all this talk of cutting costs, it really is not shocking at all that they are losing long-term employees at such a high rate, is it? I wonder if Mike actually did step down and was not merely strongly recommended to do so. I certainly can't blame him if he did...

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Eapoe View Post
    After my initial question was failed to be answered realistically, here’s a part 2:
    Why is everyone assuming Blizz moving into mobile gaming means they are done making PC content? Last few pages I’ve seen quite a few posts insinuating people are worried about that.
    Did Blizz stop making content for WoW when Hearthstone was released? Did they stop making content for D3, Hearthstone, and HotS when OW came about?
    Blizz expanding into new markets doesn’t mean they are giving up their older market areas; but, considering genres like MMORPGs are slowly on the way out as well as games like D3 having revolving door content it’s clear to see why they want to get into new territory. Especially one as lucrative as mobile gaming where profits are concerned.
    I should comment that my concerns in this post don't even correlate to the mobile gaming movement. I dislike playing most mobile games, but I don't hate them, nor do I assume that Blizzard is going to stop developing PC games just because they are working on some mobile ones. It's not like Diablo IV was canceled because of this mobile game that I'll almost certainly never play.

    It's just not the core issue here, at least not to me.
  1. silverdragon234's Avatar
    Come on, peaople. We all know Blizzard would never make mobile games, 'cause phones cannot allow gaming.
  1. Vineri's Avatar
    Diablo 3 on the Switch is the better mobile option, as far as mobile gaming goes.

    Pretty much someone will play at home on the big screen with a real controller, and then as a handheld while away. I see a brighter future when there are more options available on how a game gets consumed.

    Games that are exclusive only for a phone don't interest me in the slightest. There are plenty of OK titles out there, but I just stopped caring. But then again everyone living outside Asia is apparently not the primary target audience I guess.

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