World of Warcraft subscriber base sheds 7%

Blizzard's MMORPG sheds 800,000 users since June, now sits at 10.3 million; Eastern market responsible for biggest losses.

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In August, Activision Blizzard announced that World of Warcraft subscriber numbers had dipped to 11.1 million during its quarter ending on June 30. Those numbers again declined in the company's following fiscal quarter.

The World of Warcraft is still more than 10 million strong and could grow with Mists of Pandaria.

During an investor conference call yesterday, Blizzard president and CEO Michael Morhaime revealed that World of Warcraft's subscriber count now sits at 10.3 million active users. This represents a 7.3 percent decline for the quarter ending on September 30.

Speaking to the decline, Morhaime attributed the largest chunk of losses to the Eastern market. "The majority of the declines were in the East," the Blizzard executive said. "China still represents more than half of our global player base, and historically, December has been a very good month for subscriber trends."

As for how Blizzard plans to combat the dropping subscription number, Morhaime said, "We have a number of initiatives planned, we plan to be very aggressive in terms of our marketing promotions."

Blizzard announced the latest World of Warcraft expansion, the Asian-inspired Mists of Pandaria, at last month's BlizzCon. The company is also set to launch World of Warcraft in Brazil on December 6.

Discussion

119 comments
rosmoss
rosmoss

With all the Free to play games coming out WoW is losing a lot of its player base. Dc universe online, lineage 2 went ftp recently, Guild wars 2, and the new star wars mmo coming out soon. Blizzard better be ready to do something new with the game if they want to keep up

Thule_77
Thule_77

Subscription should be reduced or even consider going free in the future.

holyghost87
holyghost87

With all the $$ they earned from WoW for 7 long years, I'm pretty sure Blizzard is able to deliver AAA title in a long run again.

Komania
Komania

It's because Blizzard is greedy, and stopped putting out any innovative content. It's simply a new 5 man, some new useless gear, and a new raid. YAY! That's totally worth $50 + $15 a month!

V4LENT1NE
V4LENT1NE

Well I stopped mid Cata as the content was boring, I was a high end raider in Wrath but Cata was just terrible with tons of refurbished content. I will not be getting the panda stuff, it looks retarded.

Mr_Kindheart
Mr_Kindheart

Now the plan to save the subscription base: Kung Fu Panda! >.

Ravenlore_basic
Ravenlore_basic

..I am leaving at the end of this month and may start again if panda seems good. but it will not be continous like it has been. WHAT DO I WANT.... simple 5 factions...... Faction 1 and 2 true evil... followers of the lich king, or demon group, or Burning league.... Faction 3 Good... followers of the light. Faction 4 and 5 are alliance and horde. This would help a lot in making it more fun and intresting.. rading bases would have nodes and the land would be several huge open battle grounds for those who like rts they get exaluted with a city and then can be incharge of some guards with special abilities. either in attacking or defending.

Sevenizz
Sevenizz

As a WoW player, I can confirm that the game is very boring as of late and I know a lot of players have lost the urge to play - myself included. The raids are boring and take too long, PvP is almost non existent and getting rated games on low / med pop servers are impossible to form, and the general feeling of 'pandas' has not excited the player base. More and more people talk about leaving for KotOR when it finally comes out and if Blizzard's answer to that is a patch - they might find a lot of their player base giving it a shot. If Bioware makes a great game which they have a history of doing - they could put a serious dent into Blizzard's monopoly while they keep giving thier customer's the same old thing we've seen for 6 years now. Their formula is getting tired.

Nzilla
Nzilla

at the end of the day, it's still impressive that so many people are playing a game that old.

dRuGGeRnaUt
dRuGGeRnaUt

Wow is definately a more casual-ized mmo. But that suited me just fine. With work, a wife and a 2 year old son, it was nice to play an mmo i could advance in :) - for all the die-hard mmo-ers, I could see their problem with this game. My only regret was how few raids i actually got to do :( I did have a lot of fun with friends in this game, and owned the **** out of the auction house lol

dRuGGeRnaUt
dRuGGeRnaUt

@Asseen0nTV: *STANDS UP AND CHEERS* - thanks for that. It was one of the best comments ive seen in 13 years of GS. lol Even if i stilled played WoW, this new "pandafest" they are calling an expansion would make me quit. Ughnnn. With all the crazy, interesting and deep lore that already surrounds the warcraft universe.. so many of the mmo-ers I know refer to wow as a "kiddies game". and I always argued.. then I read about this. - From Deathwing, one of the most badass, and destructive characters in all warcraft, to pandafest 2012... no... just no... at least not for me

N0tYrBeezin
N0tYrBeezin

@ahpuck I have not heard of Blizzard offering 30 days free to anyone after the initial purchase. What makes you so special? I bet you that it is a scam. Those emails are so good that you got fool, pal!

omghaxor45
omghaxor45

BC was the only good thing to play but still the cost for this subscription is way too high andunacceptable. the game developers screwed this game up really bad but also the people playing is another reason why i quit this game. and also this game takes up way too much time ti be able to do things that are really cool

Cwagmire21
Cwagmire21

@Colinschindler Or when a game is seven years old. How many seven year old games hold a 10 million subscription base?

kweeni
kweeni

Well it can't stay alive forever, gotta go down some day...

Sling_Master
Sling_Master

And they'll lose that ten million when Guild Wars 2 comes out.

Colinschindler
Colinschindler

What happens when great game makers get greedy and turn into businessmen...

Encephlon
Encephlon

Thats because asia took offense to the stereotypical Mist of Pandara expansion

nurnberg
nurnberg

I think it's pretty clear that WOW is in a slow decline. The game is pretty old. Another game will eventually get the "mmo king" title.

azetav
azetav

Well i still like wow, what i don't, it's paying rental for a game that'll never be truly mine... rather buy games that i can play mp online or sp offline campaigns, maybe it's just a feeling nevertheless and somehow i feel them like MY games.

de_graph
de_graph

Sorry, WoW cant live forever. At some point it'll have to die and the developers will actually have to work for their salary.

MrBBQ56
MrBBQ56

Suck on that Activision!

Asseen0nTV
Asseen0nTV

Hi! My name is Bob. I have been off the WoW for almost 1 year with no relapses. Since then, I have made an IRL girlfriend and have touched her bewbs. We do things like go outside together. I love the new me!

Link3301
Link3301

To anyone who says MoP is causing this. You are wrong. These are the quarter 3 reports. MoP was announced in quarter 4 on October 21st. Therefore, when these subscribers quit, they didn't even know MoP was being made yet.

Richardthe3rd
Richardthe3rd

I think 2012 is going to see WoW take some pretty big sub hits. Diablo 3 is coming...

Shiroibwoy
Shiroibwoy

Blizzards 'strategy' will be MORE FREE STUFF! Turn in 1 critter corpse to get tier 18 epics!! more class homogenization!!! 1 button press tanking like wotlk bear swiping!!!! Blizzard if you just understood why me and my friends left wow to begin with.

bigcrusha
bigcrusha

I can't say I'm shocked that the dip came from a large chunk of the Eastern market. The MMO market is EXTREMELY saturated over there. Korean games especially....

gimousis
gimousis

I believe it's gonna go up by about a million when the new expansion hits and then within a few moths it will dip lower than ever, losing 5-6 million subscribers cause the new expansion is gonna suck.

Triton
Triton

Just wait , this number will go way up in a few months.

GunBladeHero
GunBladeHero

I'm still surprised there's people that spend more than 500 hours on this game when they're missing tons of far more entertaining ones.

thisranks
thisranks

Archontic Posted Nov 10, 2011 1:08 am ET I played World of Warcraft for five good years. It was never, and still hasn't been dumbed down; it has added support for less capable players, but it hasn't removed support for better players (bearing in mind the difference isn't between casual and hardcore; it's between good players and bad players. There's a massive difference). The fact is that World of Warcraft is an amazing game. It just is. The reason it's no fun though is because MMORPGs are community-driven. And it just so happens that at least 80% of the community in WoW is massively prickish. Too often in a chat, guild, raid, battleground, arena, and pug I would see people constantly mocking the game, mocking other players, and generally spouting all manner of vitriol and bile. I don't know about most gamers, but I don't have the time or the patience to deal with privileged prick children when I could be playing Skyrim or L4D2. Protip - A bad attitude will ruin any game. No matter the quality of the game itself. ------------------------------------------------------ Couldn't have said it any better. I played the game with my brother for a long time (he was GL and i was an officer) and simply got tired of the people in the guild who wanted to make their characters better instead of making each other better to get to the end game dungeons no matter the expansion. I praise those guilds who had the strong ties and were able to do so just like i did in Everquest.

ForsakenWicked
ForsakenWicked

I signed up for the annual pass considering I'm playing it right now. I also did it for the MoP beta and the free digital copy of Diablo 3. If things work right in MoP I'll keep on playing it but at the moment I'm not liking the new talent system they want to implement.

SnuffDaddyNZ
SnuffDaddyNZ

How many are Retribution Paladins? Cataclsym has the best questing of any version of WoW, but the changes to the way classes play makes things slightly less fun.

OJ_the_LION
OJ_the_LION

I did the annual pass mainly for the free diablo 3, betting that I would likely play WoW for at least a bit in the next year. Still, no matter what they do this was inevitable. This is the filet mignon of MMOs, but you'd get sick of that if you ate it every day for 7 years.

Shadow_Fire41
Shadow_Fire41

im waiting for the expansion to be honest..........probably gonna do that 12 month thing to get into the beta (and get Diable 3 and a mount for free for doing so)

Oloryn
Oloryn

@Archontic My thoughts exactly. Perfectly spoken.

GolgoThirteen
GolgoThirteen

WoW account cancelled, played for 7 long years, time runs out 26th Nov. SW:ToR on preorder, gonna get my Jedi on! If its half the game Galaxies was (pre CU and NGE) then I will be happy.

Albaficas
Albaficas

John_Read 10 mil now..... Gamespot tho didnt mention the daily subs blizz loose.... Each month 100 k + subs gets canceled

Albaficas
Albaficas

gameking5000 WAS awesome...not anymore since Linch king

Albaficas
Albaficas

finally....Enough of this 1 pixel game BYE BYE WoW Welcome SWTOR

paxis85
paxis85

i'm guessing that by initiatives, Morhaime means implementing a dubiously politically correct race of pandas in a Chinese setting lol

Santesyu
Santesyu

I had a good run with WoW,my play time ran out on nov 5th. After it ran out I uninstalled the game from my pc and will never come back. For me WoW has lost its flare for some reason. Will get Old republic when it comes out.

Archontic
Archontic

@gameking5000 - Four year old? Four?

gameking5000
gameking5000

Over 10 million people still play a seven year old game. It says more about the game than the people. The game is awesome.

Zilched
Zilched

The reason players get locked in to WoW is very simple... Better to rule in hell, than serve in heaven. In other words, players would rather appear to be a WoW god than become a noob at Any other game... sad, but true.

emperiox
emperiox

@Archontic One time I said I was quitting WoW to go play Runescape in the trade...best replies EVER.

John_Read
John_Read

10 millions active players is not low considering they are paying 15$ a month

Archontic
Archontic

I played World of Warcraft for five good years. It was never, and still hasn't been dumbed down; it has added support for less capable players, but it hasn't removed support for better players (bearing in mind the difference isn't between casual and hardcore; it's between good players and bad players. There's a massive difference). The fact is that World of Warcraft is an amazing game. It just is. The reason it's no fun though is because MMORPGs are community-driven. And it just so happens that at least 80% of the community in WoW is massively prickish. Too often in a chat, guild, raid, battleground, arena, and pug I would see people constantly mocking the game, mocking other players, and generally spouting all manner of vitriol and bile. I don't know about most gamers, but I don't have the time or the patience to deal with privileged prick children when I could be playing Skyrim or L4D2. Protip - A bad attitude will ruin any game. No matter the quality of the game itself.