Mobile Dev Blog | Xmas '18
It’s been a while since we’ve talked about RS Mobile, the beta, and where we’re going with it in the future. Apologies for the long silence, but we wanted to make sure that we had enough time to look at the feedback we’ve been getting from the beta and other sources before hammering out a longer term plan and letting everyone know about it.
Since the beta opened we have been poring over feedback and reacting to it. This might have slid by in the patch notes and not been as visible as it could have been, so I am going to list a few big features and bug fixes we’ve put out so far.
These are a selection of the things we’ve done, but there have also been a ton of other fixes under the hood to improve performance, and many quality of life fixes that make certain interfaces in the game work better on mobile.
Another big thing that came from the beta and user experience tests we’ve done with players in the office is that, even to high level experienced players, the UI can be a little bit daunting. So we’re working on ways to simplify and restructure the UI so that the things the player absolutely needs are available with as few taps as possible and that deeper detail can be accessed in an intuitive fashion.
In addition to looking at the experience of you folks who already play regularly, we’ve been looking at the new player experience too. The launch of Old School Mobile has proven that this is a great opportunity to attract new players to RuneScape via mobile, so we want to make the most of this when we get to full release. With that in mind we’re planning an early game overhaul - starting with the tutorial and continuing on into the first few hours of gameplay.
One of the biggest problems we’re going to solve is helping new players, with no previous experience, get to grips with the game. RuneScape can be a daunting place to be dropped into and, in the past, we’ve focused solely on the first 10-20 minutes of tutorial. Whilst this helped players very early on, too many people got out of the tutorial and were overwhelmed by the depth and breadth of gameplay on offer. They get frustrated, confused and ultimately don’t return to the game.
The general idea is to provide a little more direction and help for new players after the tutorial, gently leading them through the diversity of gameplay that exists and slowly removing the training wheels as they come to understand the game and learn how to set their own objectives and explore the game in the way they want to.
This isn’t going to be a quick process. It’s going to take us a fair amount to time and testing to get that early game ready for the horde of new players we want to attract, and give us the best chance of turning them into true RuneScapers! We want to make sure that the game gets a healthy, positive lift that will ensure Gielinor is a busy thriving place for years to come.
What about the members cap, I hear you ask? Well, we’re taking our time before we invite more people in. This is so we can work on the UI overhaul and get it into the right place before we show it to a new group of players. I know the wait is kind of frustrating, but it really is best to hold back the cap increase to ensure that when we do have the UI overhaul in place, we have a large mass of players fresh to mobile to give us their impression of it, as well as compare the current beta participants experience against the old UI.
Rest assured that, as we get nearer to the goal, we’ll start being a little more talkative about what’s happening. Exciting times are ahead!