You've heard that Diablo is coming out for mobile, right? In the shape of Diablo Immortal, which was announced at Blizzcon? And then everyone went a bit crazy about if for reasons we considered right here. What you might not have heard is that Blizzard is also planning to bring more of its IP to mobile. More of its IP like Starcraft.
That selection of facts and thoughts has lead us to write this here article, which tells you everything you need to know about Starcraft for mobile. Do bear in mind that, right now, the game hasn't been announced, so this is a speculative piece.
Obviously if you've got questions you'd like the answers to, feel free to chuck them in the comments at the bottom of the article. We might not have the answers right now, but we've got some ideas about what the game is going to be like, and we've got enough experience of the mobile gaming world that they can all be called educated guesses.
What sort of game is Starcraft for mobile going to be?We'd be incredibly surprised, shocked even, if Starcraft wasn't an RTS. After all it's what the series is known for. It tried to branch out with Starcraft: Ghost, but after years in development hell that game - a stealth action experience set in the Starcraft universe - was officially cancelled a few years ago.
That leaves the question - what sort of shape might Starcraft for mobile take? Iron Marines has shown that the RTS can work really well on mobile, if the developer uses its nous to bypass some of the problems that are inherent to playing on a small screen that doubles up as the game's controls.
We'd expect Starcraft for mobile to be something similar. It's unlikely to be a direct port, unless it's a port of the original Starcraft from 1998 which has recently been re-released as a HD remake that doesn't just buff up the graphics but also adds all of Blizzard's swanky new online tech. We wouldn't say that's particularly likely though. Instead expect Blizzard to take a similar path to the one it's taken with Diablo Immortal.
How much will Starcraft for mobile cost?Good question. Again, this all depends on the path that Blizzard decides, or has decided, to take with the game. We'd put a good chunk of the very small amount of money we have on it being free to play though. After all, Starcraft is massive in markets around the world where free to play has been the go-to monetisation option for a good long while.
In the unlikely event that Blizzard does decide to go premium with this one, we'd expect it to be in the same price bracket as the likes of the Square Enix RPG ports - somewhere around the £14.99 / $14.99 mark on the App Store.
We really don't think that's very likely though. For one thing, games like Starcraft for mobile live and die by the number of players they can get playing and keep playing, and free to play is the best way to make sure that happens. Whether that means the game will make some contentious decisions to ensure that mobile players get sucked in remains to be seen though.
When is Starcraft for mobile set to come out?All we know so far is that Blizzard might be working on Starcraft for mobile in some form, which means it's going to be a long way off actually releasing it. One thing we'd definitely expect though is that the game will go through a soft-launch before it gets a worldwide release. And we'd expect that soft launch to happen in some of the Asian markets.
Blizzard isn't the sort of company that's going to rush things to get them out on a specific date though, which is one of the things that makes it such an exciting developer - vast pots of money certainly open up the possibility of taking things at the pace they need to be taken at.
We imagine we won't be seeing this one landing on the App Store or the Google Play Store before the end of 2019, and we wouldn't be surprised if it takes even longer than that for it to come out for mobile.