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World of Warcraft subscribers dwindle

by Stephen Coleman on 10 November 2011, 14:07

Tags: Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI), World of Warcraft

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The sudden drop in subscribers to Blizzard's hugely popular MMO, World of Warcraft was revealed during an investor conference call just days ago. Blizzard president and CEO Michael Morhaime announced that the subscriber count currently sits at 10.3 million users, indicating a 7.3 per cent drop for the quarter ending September 30.

Speaking about the decline, Morhaime stressed that World of Warcraft continues to be the most popular MMO in China and indeed the rest of the world.

"The majority of the declines were in the East," the Blizzard executive told investors. "China still represents more than half of our global player base, and historically, December has been a very good month for subscriber trends."

Blizzard recently announced the next expansion in the World of Warcraft series, Mists of Pandaria, which opens up a whole new oriental-styled continent over-run by a race of Pandas. The additional content will also introduce a new Monk class to the game, which introduces a new play-style for fans of the series. The company is also set to launch World of Warcraft in Brazil on December 6 which should help increase the player-base.

In-line with the upcoming expansion, Morhaime added: "It's really not intended to go out and drive new user acquisition, that's a whole other strategy. But it does drive engagement with the game, and so that will impact churn if we do it successfully, and will eventually drive winback, as players tell each other about the content they're enjoying."

World of Warcraft has been a phenomenal hit since it launched 7 years ago, however, it seems that fans of the series are looking to something new and exciting to keep them captivated. Blizzard hopes the new expansion pack will rejuvenate the game and bring players flooding back in.

Check out the trailer for Mists of Pandaria below:


The Mists of Pandaria expansion has a targeted release date of summer 2012.


HEXUS Forums :: 15 Comments

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Proof, then, that disregarding reality is a killer.
So they still have 10 million people paying the equivalent of a game every two months..? nice problem to have :)

It can't last for ever - EA are getting some very fortuitous timing with SW:TOR, but surely there's a WOW2 in the works for just such a scenario? :p
actually its the equivilent of a game every 3 months - cant find many games at £18 can you ;)- income is £45 million or so each month + what ever the deal is in china … panda land is made for the chinese since the government there can stop wow anytime it wants to.

to put it in perspective: the 7% drop is 700k subscribers in 3 months and nothing about whats happened since the announcement of panda land
kalniel
So they still have 10 million people paying the equivalent of a game every two months..? nice problem to have :)

It can't last for ever - EA are getting some very fortuitous timing with SW:TOR, but surely there's a WOW2 in the works for just such a scenario? :p

They're working on an MMO codenamed Titan but other than that not much is known. As for the dwindling subscribers it's a pattern that's been repeated several times - big spike in players at the start of each expansion, then dwindling numbers until the next xpac. People were pointing at dwindling players towards the end of WOTLK, then with the release of Cataclysm they hit an all time peak of subscribers. That said, they have lost more players than usual with this expansion and there's still another tier of raiding to go before Mists of Pandaria…
Mists of Pandaria has kinda showen alot of people that WoW isn't the game it was, my only surpise is, that they still have 10m, thought they dip would've been bigger :)