People have been talking about a World of Warcraft game on mobile for as long as mobile has been around, but for the majority of that time the closest we’ve gotten is Hearthstone which takes place in the greater Warcraft universe. That changed this past March though when Activision Blizzard announced two new Warcraft-related mobile games on the horizon. Details were very vague at the time, but one of those games was revealed in May to be Warcraft Arclight Rumble, a Clash Royale-esque strategy game with Warcraft trappings. The other announced title was rumored to be some sort of MMORPG, similar to World of Warcraft proper but its own separate thing.
Well apparently that mysterious second game has been cancelled, according to a report from Bloomberg. The report states that the game had been in development for 3 years already, but that Blizzard and development partner NetEase could not come to terms on a financing matter and ultimately decided to kill the project altogether rather than find some sort of solution. That… that doesn’t sound like a very healthy partnership. Not only does that mean a game with 3 years of work under its belt just go up in smoke, but the more than 100 developers working on the game have been disbanded, and only some of them have been transferred internally to other projects, according to the report.
Interestingly, the report also states that a third Warcraft mobile game was in the works and was set to be a Pokemon GO-like augmented reality game, but it officially got axed around the time Arclight Rumble was announced in early May. Apparently that game had been in development for 4(!) years before its cancellation. This is all pretty bizarre, especially considering that NetEase has been the distributor of World of Warcraft proper in China since 2009, so the two companies have been printing money together for more than a decade. You would think they would be able to figure this one out. Whatever the case, if this story is indeed true it’s definitely a bummer because I would have really liked to see what a mobile WoW would have been all about.