Developer 5th Planet Games is getting ready to launch its popular social MMO Dawn of the Dragons onto iOS sometime in the next few weeks. We’ve gotten to spend some time testing the game out on our iPhones, and it looks like this is going to be a very faithful port of the web version to mobile devices.
That 5th Planet was working on such a project wasn’t exactly a secret. We talked about the project with CEO Robert Winkler, COO Braden Moulton and Brian David-Marshall at GDC Online back in October. Shortly after that chat, 5th Planet hired Rob Carroll as its Chief Mobile Officer, who began overseeing the development of both Legacy of a Thousand Suns and Dawn of the Dragons on iOS. The company’s been relatively quiet on the game’s progress until this week.
Dawn of the Dragons is a fantasy-themed MMO set in the world of Tor’gyyl, where players start out as a farmhand tasked with repelling a monstrous invasion of their fields and wind up on a series of epic quests. The game features a deep single-player storyline, as well as optional multiplayer gameplay that includes player alliances with raids and player-versus-player action. The single player campaign contains zones filled with energy-based missions and boss battles, while raids and PvP elements are played by spending stamina and honor.
The mobile version of Dawn of the Dragons is designed for iPhone, though its artwork is high-resolution and looks solid when enlarged for an iPad’s screen. We’ve been playing it mostly on an iPhone 4, and the game canvas has been re-formatted to fit the device’s screen while still being navigable. Like the web version, Dawn of the Dragons monetizes through the sale of hard currency (“Planet Coins”), which is used for premium items, minions and energy recharges.
Even though this is a fairly faithful mobile version of Dawn of the Dragons, it’s not going to provide a cross-platform experience from mobile to web. Carroll explains that because the studio is working with Adobe AIR for its mobile games, some item and effect changes needed to be made. “Because of those changes (we needed to remove some items for the store, some bosses from our raids and a few items from our crafting system),” he tells us, “we chose to make mobile its own standalone version of the game. It also allows us to have an even playing field for the new users coming in on mobile to build up their heroes.”
However, the mobile version of the game is going to be playable across multiple devices when it launches sometime in February. Like most developers, 5th Planet is developing for iOS at first; Carroll says there currently aren’t any plans to put Dawn of the Dragons on Android but admits it may arrive in the future.
5th Planet’s found a large degree of success across various social games platforms like Facebook, Kongregate and Armor Games. Aside from going mobile, the developer is also exploring publishing its games with Kabam, part of a pilot program the latter still has yet to officially announce.