Blizzard discusses the challenges of bringing Hearthstone to Android

Production director Jason Chayes says making sure that the game's interface translates to the many variations of Android devices is one of the toughest tasks.

In a new interview with GameSpot today at PAX East, Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft production director Jason Chayes opened up on the challenges of bringing the free-to-play collectible card game to Android. Ensuring that the game's interface translates to the many variations of Android devices is one of the toughest tasks, he said.

"Just the breadth of different screen resolutions, different device capabilities--all of that is stuff we have to factor in to make sure the interface still feels good," Chayes said.

"The conventions we've established between the PC and iPad versions should carry over into this new platform," he added. Maintaining a smooth Hearthstone experience, whether it's on an Android smartphone or tablet, is key, Chayes explained.

We also spoke with Hearthstone lead designer Eric Dodds, who stressed that the Android version of Hearthstone remains on schedule for a release during the second half of 2014. "That is something that we are still on track for," he said.

Hearthstone soft-launched last week for iOS. Just today, Blizzard announced a new single-player adventure called Curse of Naxxramas, and you can play without spending a penny.

Parent publisher Activision Blizzard has major ambitions for Hearthstone. CEO Robert Kotick said earlier this year that the game has the potential to become Blizzard's next "mega franchise," joining World of Warcraft, Diablo, and Starcraft.

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Eddie Makuch

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

PAX East 2014

PAX East 2014
23 comments
chippiez
chippiez

where's winphone version?  If they can worry about the 2% market share OSX has for WOW, they can worry about the 3% market share Winphone has for mobile.

northshire
northshire

With the barrels upon barrels of great games on the Android platform, I'm not sure why a major, non-independent company like Blizzard could have a hard time, due simply to the versatility of Android devices. Goodness, make in-game settings for adjusting text and image size or something, if you have to.

croxus
croxus

Cmooon, its just a card game, how card could that be, apart from their artwork department, boys at Bliazzard must be really lazy and greedy...

wade_s
wade_s

@croxus I'm not looking to attack you or have a heated argument, but it sounds like you're a guy who doesn't program games and isn't part of Blizzard. To assume they are lazy and greedy while at the same time questioning how easy it is to create such an intricate program as Hearthstone leads me to feel you simply want to attack Blizzard with general disdain, perhaps due to other dissatisfied experiences with them, rather than you have an understanding mind.

thrombosis45
thrombosis45

Why  won't they just say they have a timed exclusivity deal with Apple? Why make up this garbage? Making an android version is nothing for company like Blizzard. It's the same thing with Diablo 3 on next-gen consoles, we all they knew were making an Xbox One version all along. Getting sick of being lied to by the gaming media.

NX75
NX75

@thrombosis45  Yeah. They bring up valid challenges in developing for Android, but those challenges are something I'd expect a company like Blizzard to not stumble over for so long. How could it really be such a problem for the biggest company in the games industry? It just doesn't add up.

GH05T-666
GH05T-666

Hearthstone is fun, if you like card games.

vadagar1
vadagar1

blizzard should just die already


they have lots of talented people that can do much better work at other companies

TheEternalGamer
TheEternalGamer

All that variation in hardware. If only they were a PC game developer.

eyeball2452
eyeball2452

PC's have a lot of variation. Not sure why Android gets such a bad rap.

King9999
King9999

@eyeball2452  It's because all PCs have some universal features, while Android devices don't.  For example, some devices have physical keyboards while a lot of them don't.  There's also the fact that there's much less screen space to work with on Android devices compared to PC.  On a mobile device, every pixel is a precious resource.  Then there's the fact that the specs are much lower than PC.  There are still numerous problems working with Android, not all of them technical.

sanchango
sanchango

@King9999  so you're saying apple's iOS is more universal than android? Honest question

King9999
King9999

@sanchango @King9999  Yeah, iOS is easier to work with since everything is standardized.  You know right off the bat which resolutions you're developing your games for, and you know what features you'll be working with.  And you know that if the game works on one device, it'll work mostly the same on other devices.  That's not to say that Apple doesn't have their own issues, but making games on iOS (and Windows Phone) is far easier than Android.

King9999
King9999

Making any game on Android is a tough task.

Sevenizz
Sevenizz

WoW pet battles for mobile. Not all of us care about fantasy card games.

jan_henriksen
jan_henriksen

Just cause you are not in to that type of games it doesn't mean you have to be as BS BS BS. If you don't care why comment? I don't say that you shouldn't comment but keep it a genuine debate?

I'm one of those who like CCG so I would gladly see hearthstone come to android.