Next two World of Warcraft expansions planned

Blizzard COO Paul Sams confirms Mists of Pandaria follow-ups already in the works for long-running MMORPG.

World of Warcraft's fourth expansion, Mists of Pandaria, only just entered beta testing this week and has no release date. Despite this, developer Blizzard has confirmed it will extend the game's life with a fifth expansion and additional future follow-ups.

Blizzard is planning to soar over new lands, according to Sams.

Speaking to CVG at an event at the developer's Irvine, California, headquarters recently, Blizzard COO Paul Sams was asked if he saw potential for expansions beyond Mists of Pandaria. He replied, "Absolutely, because I know what the next one is. So, that being said, I think there's a lot of opportunity."

Gamers shouldn't get excited about a Mists of Pandaria follow-up too soon. Sams said the team at Blizzard has only an "idea, a general framework" for the expansion.

On top of a fifth WOW expansion, Sams said he has already seen a glimpse of what's next for the massively multiplayer online role-playing game.

"I got the pitch from [Blizzard senior vice president of creative development Chris Metzen] of what they plan for 6.0, and I'm pretty geeked up about it. They already know what they're going to be doing for multiple expansions ahead."

Finally, Sams addressed the health of WOW. He said he envisions the game remaining strong.

"I think the future of World of Warcraft continues to be bright, and I think Mists of Pandaria is going to breathe huge life into what I believe is the best MMO out there," he said. "I think the number of people we have playing and the level of enthusiasm they have for the game suggests that to be the case."

Mists of Pandaria will be WOW's fourth expansion. It follows The Burning Crusade (2007), Wrath of the Lich King (2008), and Cataclysm (2010).

Since peaking at an all-time high player base of 12 million in 2010, WOW has steadily shed subscribers, dropping to a current tally of 10.2 million. The developer said it has no intention to switch to a free-to-play business model, insisting it is happy with its $15/per month subscription plan.

For more on WOW's latest expansion, check out GameSpot's Now Playing video feature with Mists of Pandaria's beta, embedded below.

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

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Eddie Makuch

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.
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230 comments
redturkei
redturkei

forever WoW whocares graphics . Game was skying Ty Blizzard for 7years

saint0814
saint0814

So basically if Blizzard sparks my interest in WOW again with a future expansion I'll have to buy this garbage beforehand... those money making b@$^@&)$!!!

gravemate
gravemate

about graphics...yeah it s'd be better with new and cool details...but dont forget that; if graphs got detailed the size of game will be more...

gravemate
gravemate

stop making hate speech guys. if you dont like it, quit playing it and if you already quitted wow please stop making hate speech. I'm a role player in wow, and seriously....Lore is very very much detailed. Most of ppl whom making hate speech about wow; boosted by a high lvlled player, after 3-4 weeks looted bis items...afterwards they are writing same sentence to every wow news ; " wow sucks". no mate, you've got wrong, its a massive multiplayer online "Role  Playing" game. 

DF2
DF2

 @gravemate You are correct its a role playing game, but look what Blizzard has done to it. I mean everything is so easy, players level up too fast to enjoy the lore as they progress; instead the whole model is changed to get you to lvl 85 in a week. There are little or no players for low level instances which have great lore. Where does this put players new to WoW. They will miss over half the content. When WoW first came out leveling was slow and at times painful but the reward of leveling up was great. Players of all levels spent great many hours experiencing the lore with friends before they moved on. I feel it is our right to voice concern over the current turn of events. If your happy with it, that's your cup of tea not mine. 

ShaggyCW
ShaggyCW

Blizzard just needs to start from scratch. Update the graphics and start a new story and just create a WoW2.

mochen0125
mochen0125

the Mists of Pandaria sounds good by my friends. the fifth expansion? i cannot imagine what's like. Maybe the fourth is enough? i don't if i need to buy account to adapt the new expansion since my account is  just level 35. shall i buy one with maximum level? i heard there is a website www.farmer100.com, which sell wow account specially, i'm not sure whether it's reliable?

tachyon96
tachyon96

Forget all these extra expansions, what blizzard should do is improve the graphics of the game and make it as good as Tera...People leaving this game because of its graphic engine..its obsolete...It could look so much better and people who left will come back again...its got all the depth any game needs, just the graphics are crap.

 

ninedot
ninedot

I think that Mists of Pandaria is for sure going to kill the game for me. The best experience I could ever have was the first time I could ever fly in WOW and this new expansion just doesn't give me that same thrill... I don't see how more expansion are going to help at all... Blizzard needs to come out with a new MMO for crying out loud.

dscholt
dscholt

my wife and have loved all the games but definitely though the best were Wrath of Lich King for the dungeons and Raids and Cataclysm for the quests.  we havent been on for awhile now but will come back when the Mists of Pandera comes out and hope it has both good dungeons and raids and good quests.  the dungeons no matter how fun they are get old after about 10 times but the quests if done well have more lasting impact i think.  the raids can be a lot of fun as well but really depend upon the group and how everyone treats one another

AshTray1986
AshTray1986

I can hear the eruption of applause coming from basements all around the world...

BigDawgSteve420
BigDawgSteve420

If only you could rewind this game back to just the Burning Crusade expansion it would be fun again.

coimantokio
coimantokio

am i the only one still playing frozen throne and ignoring wow?

ArticRecon
ArticRecon

Wondering how many more years this game will exist, and if the graphics will forever stay relatively the same.  We are all playing Skyrim with nice lush world, meanwhile WoW players are still stuck in the same outdated world.  eh, I used to play WoW, 7 years ago, lol.  Yes I'm bashing, only because, it seems these players might as well be bashing their heads on the desk.  MMOs, no complex story, just click, loot, click, loot... oh well.. whatever floats your boat.  p.s. I'm just as critical about the CoD heads.  Not much different really.  I like a little depth to my game.

sTyLnK
sTyLnK

I enjoy WoW because there is a lot you can do once you are raiding end content. Such as mounts, pets, achievements etc. With every other MMO out there, once you hit end game there really is literally nothing to do. The longevity of WoW is definitely a good thing.

adamms1384
adamms1384

Now that Diablo 3 is out, I would suspect a very sizable drop in active subscribers.  Personally, I know 5 WoW players that have already cancelled their subs just to play D3.

Swain23
Swain23

@buddybuk Obviously you haven't played many MMO's. WoW is based off the everquest formula but the reason wow was so successful imo is cause it brought a whole lot of new stuff to the table and made changes to the general MMO formula. And if you'd actually read into GW2 you'd know this is exactly what they're doing. They're making drastic changes to the mmo formula. They are not trying to make a WoW with certain tweaks like rift and swtor did. It is a completely different MMO like nothing you've ever played. And if it works...i think WoW will take a serious blow.

buddybuk
buddybuk

Every MMO is based off the same formula that WoW is based off of (each one just adds a few unique features or addons). GW2 will be just as much of a WoW killer as Rift and SWTOR were (...not much). They are all pretty much the same. This article just proves that you can depend on WoW to add more content for you to enjoy... games that only have a million or so subscribers don't give that reliability. In the end, play the game you love. I will stick with WoW.

djwood84
djwood84

The developer said it has no intention to switch to a free-to-play business model, insisting it is happy with its $15/per month subscription plan. $15.00x10,000,000 = No f***ing kidding

deustchin
deustchin

well don't take the global subscribtions. Most of them are from China and the game do not use monthly sub there, cus of the chinese low restrictions. Just tell me how many active subscriptions you have from Europe and USA. How many of those 10 mil?

Warlord_Irochi
Warlord_Irochi

@Meteor7 Not to mention people calling the game "Dead" or "Dead horse" as I can read below... 11 Million account, 10 million of em active... If that is the definition of "Dead" then I don't want to think what it is to play/work in any of those MMO's that have only 1 million active users (in the best of cases). @Albaficas Would it be that hard to write properly?

Meteor7
Meteor7

@Warlord_Irochi It's just the way people are. They don't like something they bash it. I quit WoW and bash it to an extent, but I don't join the club of morons saying the next MMO is a WoW killer. WoW is probably going to live on to the last expansion and will still have a community for some time until Blizzard makes their next MMO and people move on. That is if Blizzard ever makes it or if people like it in the first place. >_>

Kooken58
Kooken58

@Philly1UPer You do know whenever a new expansion comes out you technically have to start over...gotta grind 5 or 10 more lvls and get all that gear over again...When EQ was big they said the same thing, Not wanting to leave for WOW...Most who have your view point will leave eventually...You will be missing out GW2 is tons of fun, and its not just one massive gear treadmill and of course you can drop the game and pick it up anytime cuz there is no sub fee.

Warlord_Irochi
Warlord_Irochi

I don't get why people is so surprised about WoW longevity. Remember that Dark Age of Camelot had 7 expansions and is still active (little poeple, but active). Also seems like bashing WoW is trendy now... the game will not hurt you if you don't play it you know...

bluefox755
bluefox755

If I had a dead horse that shot out 10 million $15 subscription payments every month, I'd continue to beat it as well

Goupil418
Goupil418

Come on Blizzard... keep beating on that dead horse...

vadagar1
vadagar1

I could write pages but Unholy123 said it best....:P

badiie05
badiie05

@lazycomplife omg dude i could not have said it any better

DitchyJ
DitchyJ

Didnt like this game at all..... Alot of people seem to be leaving it and struggle to find other games because they are all the same formula.

nousername66
nousername66

You know you have an addiction when you pay to play the same game every month. No thanks, never played WoW and never will.

mati2121
mati2121

Ofc the they will make Emerald Dream eventualy my gues.But this dollar war has consume WoW core gameplay right with the beggining of the WOTLK .Cataclysm just ended the art off destruction for the old school wow gamers , wow that we knew is long dead

lazycomplife
lazycomplife

If you are planning two expansions, couldn't you just plan one instead?

winnazdaluza
winnazdaluza

it seems wow is becoming the "saw" of video games.

Philly1UPer
Philly1UPer

meh. Maxed out my rouge to 85, have all my gear, did what I needed. Have no reason to play anymore until MoP comes out...but with this news? I may not even bother. Will I switch over to GW2? No, because I already invested my time and money into WoW. I have no reason to play any other MMO besides WoW when I get that MMO urge simply because like I stated before. Too much time and money was already invested.

vadagar1
vadagar1

as long as the funds feed diablo3 and SC2 I'm happy, I had my fun in wow but I'm done (until they make it free ...then maybe for nostalgia sake who knows)

Bowser05
Bowser05

I'm not sure I like that. First they said we were going to get 10level expansions until we got to the last one at level 100. Then they started milking by going by 5 levels instead. Then they hinted at there being one more after MoP but then that 'hint' was quickly sqashed. Then they say a MINIMUM of two more expansions? Two more makes sense by 5 levels to get to 100 and end the MMO...but more after that? I don't like that at all. While I've had a lot of fun with the MMO since I've started playing since BC, the game is starting to show its age A LOT. While the gameplay concepts may be fresh and fun, it's time for them to do the final stretch to the end and focus more and getting Titan out. Regardless of whether they say Titan isn't going to be a WoW competetitor or not it WILL be. All of us faithful WoW players will likely jump on the opportunity to play a newer, bigger and better (hopefully) MMO out of them...and WoW will be dead. That means the conclusion for WoW won't be done right and it may mess up the eventual release of WC4 a little. There is a time when one needs to draw the line between greediness and realistic business models. TOR already stole some customers, GW2 will do more, and who knows what'll happen after that. We will see I suppose.

Brazman
Brazman

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

shooters125
shooters125

Wish they would just make another Warcraft RTS...

edqmaster
edqmaster

I gave up on this game the amount of money and time invested out weighted the reward.

All-Day-Stoner
All-Day-Stoner

didn't realize so many people can predict the future? No one knows if GW2 will be a "WoW killer". Pathetic!

ROMEOHELL
ROMEOHELL

for those whom wow lovers themselves calling , am happy for u , rly i do , cause honestly when a real gr8 game with inspiring release GW2 that is , when the time comes , i wish non of the current wow players participate in GW2 with their sick mentality that would surly leads to -----> wow annoying ugly sick community .

MysteryJ0ker
MysteryJ0ker

5th expansion: World of Warcraft: Carebear Nation

Demo_Target
Demo_Target

@Elrax I have been following GW2 for a while now (without beta), and was a vanilla GW1 player before switching to WOW because of the many things WOW did right and that people always forget. Still, I will trust GW2 when and if I see it go live and prosper. PS: I'm currently inactive in both franchises for good reasons.

eaterofsouls2
eaterofsouls2

Good news for me! Bad news for those who care too much about ranting even after they've stopped playing this game. :/

pyroone
pyroone

@Barrakas21 shows you how much you know about business. 5 million paying customers is 5 million paying customers who cares whether they're in china or here in the US? @Albaficas I couldn't care less if GW2 takes down WoW. I don't own stock in blizzard. I don't play wow anymore, all I know is I tried GW and it's an awful game. Fanboys are so sad.

Elrax
Elrax

@Demo_Target Maybe, but have you ever taken the time to check up on what's up with all this GW2 hype? At the core it IS an MMO, expect that much. But it presents itself and does some things very differently from WoW. I don't call it a WoW Killer, but I do believe it will be a defining moment and change from the MMO's usual pace and game.

dwstall
dwstall

(Before reading article)... hmmm next WOW expansions.... let me guess... I would say "Tickle Me Elmo Saves the Alliance" and perhaps "Snuggles the Bear Visits the Mists of Pandera: The Makings of True Awwwwws"

Demo_Target
Demo_Target

You're seriously jinxing GW2 now... I trust you know what happened to every single other game that was the "saviour" that would rid people of WOW. As someone said, it will kill itself, eventually, like everything else, including Apple. The biggest problem the MMO genre has is the same the shooter genre has: everyone is trying to beat WOW/COD by being WOW/COD, just with more bewbs and prettier guns. Why would I want to get away from a game that has become stale in its fundamentals, by going to play a game, that is even more stale, not original, and does not have a fraction of the background, community or sometimes even production values.

AzatiS
AzatiS

After pandarians .... I dont want to think whats next... really i dont!!!