World of Warcraft census tops 11.5 million

Wrath of Lich King expansion helps Blizzard's massively successful MMORPG reach its latest milestone.

It has been more than four years since Blizzard Entertainment's massively multiplayer online role-playing game World of Warcraft launched, but the blockbuster's user base continues to swell. Today Blizzard provided the latest update to World of Warcraft's population, boasting a subscriber pool more than 11.5 million people strong.

World of Warcraft reached the 11-million mark roughly two months ago. As for what could have spurred the extra growth, an obvious culprit is the November launch of the game's second expansion pack, Wrath of the Lich King. After selling 2.8 million copies in its first day on shelves, the expansion finished its first month with more than 4 million copies sold, according to Blizzard. The developer cites both of those figures as records for a PC game, records that were previously held by the first World of Warcraft expansion, The Burning Crusade.

As Blizzard uses a variety of payment plans in different countries, the publisher defines "subscriber" thusly: "World of Warcraft subscribers include individuals who have paid a subscription fee or have an active prepaid card to play World of Warcraft, as well as those who have purchased the game and are within their free month of access. Internet Game Room players who have accessed the game over the last 30 days are also counted as subscribers. The above definition excludes all players under free promotional subscriptions, expired or cancelled subscriptions, and expired prepaid cards. Subscribers in licensees' territories are defined along the same rules."

World of Warcraft subscribers hail from a number of countries and regions, including North America, Europe, China, Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Chile, Argentina, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau. Most recently, WOW was launched in Russia and Latin America.

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Discussion

533 comments
theOceanKool
theOceanKool

in regards to xgcNight's post...i merely said RoC1909 was a douche because of the way he presented his argument. i agree with you in saying the other guy was being sarcastic. RoC1909 seemed waaay too arrogant in what he was saying. maybe if he moved outta his moms basement, he'd realize that he's not the smartest mofo to walk the earth

Shadow_Fire41
Shadow_Fire41

yakumo is right, and about the monthly fee thing, i learned you can just buy a pre paid card, and if you don't play for a while, your not paying for months you don't play, wanna play again? get another card.

yakumo20
yakumo20

I personally think that WoW is a very good game. I also think it's a addictive game. But I don't think the blame is on Blizzard. How can one criticise a game developer to make a game addictive? It's the same as criticising a restaurant that make food that tastes good?! So should a restaurant then be making food that taste like sh*t? I don't think so. What I really am bothered about is the monthly fees. I think it's too high. I live in Europe and the fees is €12.99. A friend of said that I should compare it with a day out so it's not so expensive. Yes when I made the comparison ít is much cheaper but should I be making this comparison? I think by comparing it with other online games is more logical. And there are a lot of games which monthly fees is much lower and some are free. But most of the games aren't as good as WoW. They say they need the high fees to maintain quality, but then why are they making a monsterous profit?? So I think that Blizzard should lower fees to like €7 or €8 a month. Especially when there is a world wide recession.

mattv888
mattv888

Never played it. I definitely would have if it wasn't for the monthly subscription. You always feel guilty for not playing enough since your technically paying for every second you don't play. Hate games and *cough* microsoft *cough* for that.

HeavyMetalBard
HeavyMetalBard

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

buzzguy
buzzguy

Come on...it's not just for hermits anymore! WoW's really fun when the mood strikes, but can be incredibly boring otherwise.

CaLiBeiRs
CaLiBeiRs

if you are really bored or don't had anything in your life, then go try playing wow

alixkid
alixkid

Hex hex..donn't make me go off about the Death Knight. It was originaly suposed to be in the Game, and only available to Undead ( it was to be for the horde what the Paladin was for the Ally ).Blizz took it out. Nice job Blizz add an Old Yet new class to the game. Btw the Death Knight, and Ret pal are the most over powered classes in the game right now.

Evinco_DX
Evinco_DX

One hell of a subscriber base for just one game. Too many games to play right now to enjoy Wrath of the Lich King. Will definitely be playing it during the summer drought though.

BloodMist
BloodMist

WTF Davlon...the Death Knight is frustrating to play?Are you playing it on drugs, or something?

datniccah187
datniccah187

Thats a serious fan base. Its crazy that one game can reach that many people. Makes you think about how big the industry is getting.

Hawaiianc
Hawaiianc

hehhh i dont know if there talking about paid user/canceled subscribers combine,, or just paid user because if they sold 4 million copies of expansion thats lot of people that dont have it and thats lot of left overs... man there going to have a big issue on there 3rd expansion if they dont close the gap faster... heh i like lotro better though man the lotr conquest game rocks just wish turbine made the fighting like it.. but it perfect for an rpg as it is

Ohaidere
Ohaidere

Since some cry babies thumbs downed me earlier, let me repeat: Don't be mad because you're too poor to afford $15 a month.

dalvon
dalvon

it's quite a large number of players for blizzard to get into the game,even tough that it has lasted this long. However the WoTLK in my own ways of seeing things is a serious let down to any gaming standards that i have seen, even tough they have added the death knight class to this expansion let me be honest with you... it's the most irritating class i have played in my entire life their is no fun at all when you play this thing it's like playing Too Human but with all you saved games gone into thin air.

xgcNight
xgcNight

No he's not, I liked how he explained it in the bottom paragraph. I think what you all failed to realize was that baal46 was obviously being sarcastic to prove a point. I was hoping no one took him seriously but it seems that he has stricken a nerve in some people. Watching your favorite television show, which may run for possibly an hour, 5 days a week wouldn't be considered an addiction though. I say congrats to Blizzard for attracting more customers, they're smart if they can do that. And whatever people want to do in their spare time is their own business. You don't have to worry about them, you just have to worry about yourself in life. However if it is a close friend or relative, inviting them to go out with you to party or out for dinner and a show would be good.

RoC1909
RoC1909

@ baal46 Absolutely MORON comparisons: 1) Driving to work GETS you the money that gives you your addiction to WoW. 2) Unless you are ADDICTED to the Internet, than Firefox COULD be a addiction. The way you state it just means you are a moron. 3) Exercise. Well if a person is OVERWEIGHT or has a health issue (i.e Diabetes) then exercising is a necessity for health reasons. Stupid comparison. 4) Wow. You watch television 10 hours a week. Good for you. Is it a addiction. No Frankly, I am surprised your moron brain didn't say that "Well. I eat three times a day!!! I must have a addiction!!" OR "Jeez!! I drink water quite a bit!! That is a addiction!!" OR "Wow!! I have to put on clothes everyday so there is a addiction!!" OR "You know what? I have to shower everyday and brush my teeth!!! That is a addiction as well!!" Oh how I love putting people like you in your place. It makes my day all the more fun!!

SpaceTrucker06
SpaceTrucker06

I left after getting extremely annoyed with the gold farmers and blizzard seeming to do squat about them. Getting spam from players and mail boxes is not my idea of fun. I get that free in real life and don't want to put up with that in a game that i'm paying subscription for. How annoying is it seeing new mail appear in game and traveling to a mail box and finding its a dam gold farmer offering cheap gold or power leveling!! Took the fun out of it for me so I've been clean for over a year now.

Sporemike
Sporemike

I dont know why people put WoW down as a crap game or it is for sad people. when it is not it is just a good game now lets say GOW 2 had 11million people no one would say that is sad coz they say that is a cool shoot-em-up and is not for nerdy ppl. Blizzard have done very well to keep bringing more people in to the game and that is a gr8 achievement. even after 4y going still going strong keep up the gd work bliz

TorugotoShinsan
TorugotoShinsan

I11.5m subscribers is a great achievement but I'm curious as to how many of those 11.5 million play the game. "Subscribers" implies people that have played the game at some point and not necessarily people who are playing the game now. The definition it gives is very open so I'm wondering how many of those 11.5 million access the game say at least once or week.

fatalimpact004
fatalimpact004

wow baal46 you are just an idiot. If you watch TV for 10 hours a week then that is not being addicted, it is when you can't stop and you pour as much of your time and effort into it. Using firefox and driving our pretty much necessities in todays world. Exercising can easily be an addiction but the way you described it it is not. so if you spend all of your time on an online game and it takes you hours and hours, if not days, to just stop, then yes you have an addiction. You are just ignorant.

HQRNET
HQRNET

I stopped playing WoW about 3 years ago. I often think about going back to it, but it just takes so much of my time. Massive milestone for Blizzard though. 11.5 Million players, thats truly monstrous, truly ...

Paladin_basic
Paladin_basic

Wonderful... I quit WoW some time ago due to having to play at stupid o'clock when everyone could team up to do the more advanced instances, watched the ingame economy constantly smashed by chinese gold sellers, and witnessed Blizzard's rather disapointing lack of investmant in servers. Lag was awful on the server I was on, but you have to pay to move each character you have! Ha! Dream on Blizzard

Ravenlore_basic
Ravenlore_basic

FUNNY!!!! People who watch 5+ hours of TV+ watching Movies,say WOW is bad because it takes up too much time. Also people who play about the same amount of time (and more money) playing other video games say WOW takes up too much time. In the end Life is time, what makes you happy and and what you enjoy is equal to what others enjoy as in the brain translates it into feelings of joy. Though, people who do anything to excess is turning something that is good to something that is not good.

baal46
baal46

Help! I'm hopelessly addicted to television because I watch 10 hours a week! Oh, and I'm hopelessly addicted to Firefox! I even use it at work! OMGosh I think I'm also addicted to driving! I drive every day! And exercising! I'm a complete addict! Oh noooes! Oh if ONLY I had just a little bit of self control..! Self... control... Self...

mastervirtua
mastervirtua

While 11 million is an extraordinary achievement for Blizzard, or any developer for that matter, I can't help but feel pity for those that are hopelessly addicted to this game (the ones that play 10+ hours in a week).

enix165
enix165

Hoo-freakin'-ray. Now where's Warcraft 4?! >=\

Golbez_77
Golbez_77

@killingspree303 Blizzard only has 1 rts team and the next 3-4 years is dedicated to starcraft 2 so the earliest you'll see warcraft 4 is 2015.

Killingspree303
Killingspree303

World of Warcraft is a great MMO, made by the great Blizzard Entertainment. I look forward to their next games, Starcraft 2 and Diablo 3 (and hopefully, Warcraft 4...!).

Blizzard_FX
Blizzard_FX

Well done Blizzard you truly deserve this for such an incredible game. It's sad to think the people moaning are just upset that their favourite MMO isn't as successful.

victorvndoom
victorvndoom

you know half of them are chinese gold spammers

SPOONMAGIC
SPOONMAGIC

I wasted a year of my life playing this, for an MMO its got it all but seriously playing MMO's ruins ur life, you dont go out all u think about is getting the next set item ect, It saddens me knowing many more in the world waste their lifes on this. If you had sense you'd leave the game, go out an make something of your life instead of being a hermit, lonely in front of a computer 4-7 days a week. All i can say is get a life an just play decent pick up an play games where ur not required to raid every night if u want progress

mah_ebi_sia
mah_ebi_sia

this is win for blizzard and i think people can play this game always but maybe many man hate of this .

xan114
xan114

WoW is clearly the best game ever made for any system ever. It just requires patience. Once you reach level 60 it gets very fun in The Burning Crusade expansion. Anyway, name another game with 10+ million players that has had consistent popularity for years, as well as another game with such an amount of lore that is has its own Wikipedia (wowwiki.com)(i know there is Starcraft Wiki, Diablo Wiki, and GTA Wiki etc but they pale in comparison to WoW Wiki).

Strike
Strike

WoW is extremely addictive...I was fortunate enough to be able to kick the addiction after 2 years of play time....I find it difficult staying away from the game even now 2 years later..maybe it's because I hate my wife. If you get in with a good group of people it really is a fun time

pokemedot
pokemedot

for all you people who think WoW is a cheap game cause you dont have to pay 60$ a game are pretty stupid i have gamefly i pay 24$ a month get all the new and old games i want an unlike most people when i beat a game i dont go "oh crap i just shelled out 60$ for this piece of crap" and even if it was good i still get bored of those games

evsky
evsky

WAR is better... just try it

lukemularczyk
lukemularczyk

So by there own definiations the figure includes all the gold spammers who have logged into the system in the last 30 days, which is a lot. As they generally get banned quite quickly. Also 11.5 millions subscribers, only 4 million buying expansion sounds.... odd, in a mmo most people are going to want to keep up with the rest to avoid being ganked etc.

shamarke
shamarke

stupid people play this game, many of my friends play and talks about it int school every day. I played this game and i was level 45 night elf rouge, then i got tired of this game!!!

claycarnac
claycarnac

COD2-The Pope, WoW has over the years gradually added more and more graveyards so that travelling back to your corpse takes less time. These days it takes alot less time than when the game first hit the shelves. The recent big patch (just before WotLK came out) added a TON more - just pointing out this problm isnt as bad as it used to be :)

COD2-The_Pope
COD2-The_Pope

I really don't get the attraction to WoW. I'll admit that it is fairly entertaining, but at the same time very frustrating(like how u die and go to a graveyard about half an hour away from where u need to be) and not very adicting. Its something that i would never own for it is just something that i'd play occasionally when i got bored and paying for something like that, while it isn't very expensive, is a bit stupid in my opinion. And all those tards that are thinking of "thumbs downing" this post cause i'm knocking their game, i'm not, this is just my opinion and i acknowledge that you all like this game, my best friend plays it, so obviously i'm not trying to offend u.

snokdruid
snokdruid

How can WoW still grow even while warhammer online is out, i played wow and seriously.. warhammer is a lot better.

CieranB
CieranB

Tbh, i quit this game.

joechummer
joechummer

How is reaching a .5-million mark considered news? Once a music album reaches Gold status (500,000 copies), that's a big deal, and so is Platinum (1 million copies), but no one cares (or bothers to report) if an album reaches "Platinum and a half." They only care if it hits Double-Platinum, 3x-Platinum, etc. 11.5 million WoW subscribers is non-news. Tell me when it's at 12 million (AKA 12x-Platinum, in record-industry speak), and then maybe I'll care.