And the Lord gave unto Moses two tablets…
Facebook users, rejoice, for this is not a drill: in Version 2.47 we will introduce a number of usability improvements for tablet and smartphone users. Using the latest advances in web technology, we hope to make the game work smoothly with both mouse and touch input. The game will continue to work best on large screens (such as those of the Surface Pro and larger iPad Pro model) but even phone users will reap some benefits from our latest push.
The West 💔 Scrollbars
- Mobile browsers will now load the game at our minimum supported resolution of 1024px instead of the default 980px, avoiding a horizontal scrollbar at 100% zoom.
- Ever noticed a vertical scrollbar after opening your inventory? Poof – it’s gone too!
- The quest tracker/notepad will now be minimised by default if your browser is 1024 scaled pixels wide or less. Additionally, the default position will be saved locally instead of syncing to the server, so the window won’t start off in the Never Never if you login using a computer with a narrower screen.
- Windows will be repositioned more rationally when the screen changes size, for example when an onscreen keyboard appears.
- In supporting browsers (see below), windows can be repositioned by dragging their title bar with one finger.
Safari is the New IE
Unfortunately, some of the best changes I’ve saved for last are reserved for users of Microsoft Edge, Chrome 55 for Desktop/Android, Opera 42 for Desktop/Android and eventually Firefox for Desktop/Android. The notable omission is Apple Safari and all derived iOS browsers. In 2007, with the release of the original iPhone, Apple heavily invested in the mobile web. Since then, a number of forces have caused Safari to drop from leader to laggard:
- Apple has a vested interest in promoting its own App Store over the web, where it takes a 30% cut of all app revenue.
- Safari no longer shares its core engine with Chrome and can’t ride on its coattails with joint development.
- All iOS users are monopolised into using Safari’s core engine, Webkit, harming competition and innovation.
Pointer Events, the World Wide Web Consortium specification that drives our touch and stylus support, are not supported by Safari for now. We hope we can fill this gap in the future but please understand that, like with Internet Explorer, this is not always possible in a timely fashion.
Other Touch Support
- In the pre-battle screen, your fort starting position and target can be adjusted by dragging them with one finger.
- On devices with a screen width of at least 1366 scaled pixels, the map can be dragged with one finger.
That’s All, For Now…
We hope you enjoy testing these changes on the public beta! If the update is well received we would like to go further and implement additional tweaks for mobile browsers. The suggestions on our radar at the moment include allowing full screen mode as well as improvements to pinning the game to the home screen. Please let us know if you have any others!