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Posts with tag warcraft-characters

Two more WoW-related iPhone apps off the App Store

Blizzard has laid the legal smackdown on two more WoW-related iPhone apps. As Double Bubble reports, both Warcraft Chest and WoW Realm Status have bit the dust, most likely after Blizzard's legal department sent them a cease-and-desist (that's what recently happened to the popular Warcraft Characters app). We don't know for sure that Blizzard went after them, but considering that Warcraft Chest was completely free, there can't be that many other reasons why it's not on the App Store any more.

It's still not clear yet either why Blizzard is doing this -- originally, since they started off going after only paid applications, it was plausible that they just didn't want other people profiting off of their game (similar to the new addon policy). But they've taken down both free and paid apps here so far, and Double Bubble also has a list of both free and paid addons still up. At this point, we have to wonder what Blizzard's real intentions are here -- they're squashing valuable resources that fans have made and are giving away for free. If they were planning an Armory or realm status app of their own, that's one thing, but the only reason we can see so far is that their legal department has decided to act against the company's own loyal fans for their own interests. Not a great strategy for encouraging customer loyalty.

And what about sites like Wowhead or the Firefox realm status addon? Why is Blizzard only targeting helpful applications on the iPhone? We can only guess that Blizzard will eventually go after the rest of the apps on the App Store, so if you're working on one or planning to release one soon, guess you might want to think again about how that time might be better spent.

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Realm Status, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Add-Ons

Blizzard sends a C&D to Warcraft Characters, other iPhone apps

The good news here: Blizzard may be planning to do more with the iPhone. The bad news: they're apparently trying to squelch useful iPhone apps that are out there right now. They've already sent out cease-and-desist orders to two Warcraft-related iPhone apps that were charging money (Armory Browser and the Warcraft Arena Calculator), and now we've heard from its creator that Warcraft Characters has gotten the C&D treatment as well (here's his post on the subject, though his site appears to be down at the moment). Just before he was set to announce the alpha of the 3.0 version of the app, Blizzard dropped him legal notice to stop distrbution. As of this writing, however, the app is still on the App Store, so get it while you can. Warcraft Chest and WoWTalent appear to still be available on the store as well, and WoWTalent is still charging 99 cents.

For whatever reason, it appears Blizzard is going after even free programs released on the iPhone that use their information from the Armory. We're not quite sure why -- an optimist might guess that they're planning to release an Armory app of their own on the iPhone, or they're worried that people might confuse the official iPhone app with one that's unofficial. Or maybe they're just being cautious of their copyrights, though that's a pretty harsh assessment -- there are other MMOs who surivive and thrive off of unofficial iPhone and desktop apps.

It would be a real shame if Blizzard legal was simply going after fans who have invested a lot of time and effort into these apps even when there's no clear reason for them to do so. Clearing the field for an official app is one thing, but closing down a useful product for your players built solely by your fans just to erase a perceived threat is entirely another.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Add-Ons, Hardware

Warcraft Chest and WoWTalent for iPhone

We posted about the Warcraft Characters app for the iPhone a while ago, and it's still the best way on Apple's mobile device to check your (or anyone else's) Armory entries. But a few other iPhone apps have popped up that might be useful to World of Warcraft fans -- both of these are free and both are worth checking out.

Warcraft Chest will let you look at drops from all bosses in dungeons and raids, rep rewards, Badge items, and PvP rewards. So if you want to drool over your favorite items while away from the game, it'll let you do just that. Unfortunately, the interface is a little boring, as it's just your normal iPhone app; it would be nice to see some kind of Loot List functionality, where you could sort items by class or type. But if you're invited to a Heroic and want to see what drops in there without alt-tabbing out of your game, there you go.

And WoWTalent will do the same thing for class talents -- you can browse through all the talent specs of every class, including all the Hunter pets and the various talents that come with each tree there. You can load and save trees to show your friends later, but unfortunately, there's no way right now to share them online -- the WoWHead talent trees are pretty URL-hackable, and it would be nice to be able to export a tree you create in WoWTalent out to a URL you can email or even tweet. But for browsing talents away from the game on the iPhone, it too works. As I said, both apps are free and available now.

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Bosses, Talents, Hardware

Characters for iPhone updated to 2.0

The Warcraft Characters app for iPhone that we reported on a while ago has been updated to version 2.0, and with it come a host of terrific improvements. As we were told last time, gear has been added in, so your iPhone can not only show you information about your (or anyone else's) characters, but it can now also show you all of their gear, and even reputation status. And there's good news for non-US users, too: the app now supports characters from any and all realms, not just US and EU, but Korean, Chinese, and Taiwanese realms as well. The only thing that's still missing is seeing individual talents -- otherwise, it's as featured an app as you can get. Sure, guild search and stats might be nice, and there's always extra features like be.imba integration, or character comparisons, but as a portable Armory, it works great as is. We're not sure if this is all Rudi's work or a result of a teamup with Omen of Clarity (who's been working on an iPhone web app for a while), but either way, great job.

And there's a shiny new icon, too (and I like it a lot better). Characters is now available on the iPhone's App Store for the low, low price of free.

Filed under: Patches, Items, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Talents, Alts, Hardware

Warcraft Characters for the iPhone

Finally, we've got a WoW app for the iPhone, but it's not quite what we'd expected. Apparently tired of waiting for Blizzard to release an official app, Rudi has taken things into his own hands and released Characters for the iPhone, a slim little app that lets you pull up your characters (or anyone elses), and browse through their Armory stats.

I installed the app (it's free), and took a look at it -- unfortunately it's not very robust, as there's no way to see gear (unlike Omen of Clarity's iArmory web app), but it does run great and look shiny. Upon running the app, you can just punch in your character's info (or anyone else's -- all you need is a name and realm), and it'll get added to your list. Choosing one sends you to screens where you can see information about professions and talents, ability stats, or combat stats.

And that's pretty much it -- more is planned, including reputation, talents, and items panes. EU and China support should be up in a few days (right now, it only works on US characters, and of course it depends on the Armory being up to update). Very nice for a first try, but we still can't wait until we see something a little more in-depth, or, dare we ask whoever's working in Blizzard's mobile division, even official.

Note: This writeup is current as of version 1.0. Later versions of the app will likely include added functionality.



Update: Good news from OOC: he and Rudi are planning to work together on the Characters app, which means it should soon have all the functionality of the iArmory web application, and then some. Saved characters? Character compare? Guild progression and be.imba integration? Yes please!

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Factions, Classes, Talents, Galleries

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