World of Warcraft subscriptions slip to 9.1 million

Activision Blizzard reports stronger-than-expected quarter thanks to 10 million Diablo III sales; WoW subs dip, profit down 44.7 percent year-to-year.

Ten million sales of Diablo III pushed Activision Blizzard into a stronger financial situation than it had hoped, even as World of Warcraft subscriber numbers continued to dwindle. The company's financial results for the period ended June 30 published today showed a positive financial situation for the publisher, expected to improve moreso by the year's end with the release of Call of Duty: Black Ops II and Skylanders Giants.

Activision's doing pretty well for a company up for sale.

Diablo III's PC-record-breaking sales, which Blizzard reported sold more than 3.5 million copies through digital and retail means within its first 24 hours, propelled Activision to $1.075 billion in revenue, surpassing its $950 million projection from the first quarter by more than $50 million. However, subscriptions to Blizzard's long-successful MMORPG World of Warcraft slipped to 9.1 million from the 10.2 million reported in February, a much more precipitous drop than from the 10.3 million figure published in September 2011. The company hopes to see improvement with the September release of expansion World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria.

Despite Diablo III's success, the second quarter of 2012 paled in comparison to that of 2011. Activision Blizzard brought in $185 million in net income for the second quarter this year, a 44.78 percent reduction from the $335 million brought in during the same period last year. Activision Blizzard's parent company Vivendi reportedly continues to seek to sell its stake in the company.

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71 comments
Devil_wings00
Devil_wings00

Well it was the tail end of an expansion when everyone knows what they are doing is ultimately pointless because a new expansion is right around the corner. Doesn't surprise me that people cancel there subs.  Still 9.1 million active players dwarfs everything else out there by 4-5 times. Even if they lose 1 million subs every year the game would probably still be profitable until the start of the next decade ;p Blizzard's gonna milk that cow until they bleed off damn near every last one of those subs. As much hate as WoW gets the game was once quite spectacular during the BC days. At least that's the last time I didn't feel like logging in was a chore. It's to bad blizzard pushed me away with all there dumb choices. Some of the most fun I've had gaming was just running raids in BC with a couple RL friends and are guild.

Azghouls
Azghouls

Looks like Chuck Norris killed a million people.

BiiteMe
BiiteMe

Looking forward to Blizzard being taken down a few notches, they created the horror they named Diablo 3 (a massive fail in my opinion). They destroyed WoW and turned it into a game suited for 10 year olds. I will enjoy seeing other better companies rise up and take their rightful places at the top of the ladder and leave the failure that is Blizz to dwell in it's misery.

skull24770437
skull24770437

i'm not surprised when blizzards battle.net was comprimised oh didnt they let everyone know untill this year a 4 year in the know and they didnt inform everyone how odd.

Primmly
Primmly

Any game in between expansions is going to lose subscribers, because people get bored waiting for new content. 

Jir11
Jir11

Who cares...

CocaColaNinja
CocaColaNinja

They are still doing good, but they are slowing falling

 

AshTrai
AshTrai

The media always takes subscriber numbers of WoW out of context. Every single time before another expansion for WoW, the subscription numbers drop because there is a 10 month lack of content for the game and people get bored so go play (and spend their money on) something else in the meantime. Blizzard knows this, as does anybody who has ever played the game for longer than a month, but the media chooses to ignore this so it can send out a sensationalistic news headlines from which uninformed people draw skewed opinions that somehow the game is falling in to an abyss.

 

I'm looking at u @Unholy123

KhanhAgE
KhanhAgE

9.1M subscribers still. Boo-hoo? There are studios that wish they had just 1M paid subscribers. How is this news? Let me guess the next headline....

 

"World of Warcraft subscriptions slip to 8.1 million".

 

(Yes, all I did was change 9.1 to 8.1)

cheese00701
cheese00701

ima unsubing as soon as my contract is up for diablo 3

killlo
killlo

maybe wow subscriptions are dropping because wow players don't want to play with pandas running around the "world of warcraft"

SuperDutchy
SuperDutchy

In other news, Bill Gates daily income "slips" to under $1 billion dollars...

Spacemancer
Spacemancer

thats still 1.6 billion dollars a year

DLazarek
DLazarek

MoP loooks really lame, so I do not plan on returning to Azeroth for this expansion.  I am actually surprised they still have over 9 million paying subscribers.   I am guessing the majority of players are in Asia, at least from the anecdotal evidence of none of my friends play it any more.

Khasym
Khasym

I know there's a lot of hate for Blizzard right now, but people, ask yourselves this one question. What are they doing WRONG, to ONLY have 9.1 million subscriptions? Yes, I count myself among those no longer playing WoW. But that doesn't mean I turned against it completely. I just moved on to different games. I don't know a game company in existence, that wouldn't like to be doing something so right, as to have 9.1 million of....ANYTHING per month. Subscriptions, titles sold in a year, DOLLARS a month.

alenth
alenth

This happens because they don't know how to realease their content, just take now Dragon Soul as an example, you hit lvl 85 and you can go directly to the last raid available on the game, you can cheat the ilvl by going in the AH and buy the crafted gear, you can even kill deathwing on the first 2 days in LFR, as an idea LFR is good but is poorly implemented because it spoils the game, you go to the normal and HC modes and the instance feels less epic and fun, makes other raiding tiers obsolete and makes you bored to play a braindead version of the actual raid, because is mandatory if you want ot progress in normal and HC modes, the worst part is how the gear on LFR is even better than Firelands, The " everyone must see the content" argument by blizzard is total bullshit because people just go there to get epics and they don't care about learning the game, blizz simply don't know how to realease content now, and they blame Diablo 3 because of the Sub loss? please........

Cozm1kaos
Cozm1kaos

This company has it all, but fails to let go of old exclusives such as COD,wow,diablo,sc2. I think if they focused full force on newer titles/characters and through out the older ones they would hit skyrocket again. Although a world of diablo, using our exsisting lvl 60 characters in wow 3D like graphics and a lvl cap of 150 would be awesome =)

Dragdar
Dragdar

Even the 9 million number is hugely inflated, someone said cosidering in Asia they pay hourly and if you played even an hour a month that's considered a sub.

 

and most of the 9m are in Asia

.

that's likely the reason they came up wit hthe whole Pandaren thing.

.

The lousiest thing is how Wow justified 15$ subs to other publishers, when that's not the way of the future nor is excused by those small upkeep costs

Evenglare
Evenglare

oh no... only 9 million what ever will they do .

servb0ts
servb0ts

This is FFXIV karma lol :P

King-gamer
King-gamer

Not surprising why Vivendi wants to sell Activision Blizz. Better get rid of them before they become unprofitable.

 

Still, I wonder how well MoP will do....

 

"Sorry, Male red pandarens won't have a tail." -Blizzard

 

Okay, MoP will fail.

snaggleoooo
snaggleoooo

It's amazing to think that even if WoW keeps dropping 1 million subs every 6 months (which is doubtful), they've still got almost 5 years left before it actually dies.

blackace
blackace

I'm not surprised by the drop in WoW especially since Diablo 3 got released. Still, I don't think there is any other MMO out there right now with 9 million subscribers. That's 9000000 x $15 every month. $135 million a month times 12. lol!! Activision and Blizzard are not hurting for fund, that's for sure.

Jebril
Jebril

Can't understand how people play MMO games, you have to dedicate yourself to it. 

interrasteral7
interrasteral7

Either people dropped their subcription for another MMO video game or hopefully trying to quit playing MMO video games.

Erebus
Erebus

I'm really only interested in the subscriber numbers for Europe and the Americas. The Asian market uses net cafes and does not charge a subscription fee.My guess is there are no more than three million NA, SA and EU players in total.

Baked-Calbee
Baked-Calbee

Problem is, they promised a complete remodel of all the existing races to match the current WoW grahpic engine, and later they said it can not be done and will release in a later patch.  I mean, it works few years back, but now as your game is slowing dying, its not working out too great.

 

Another deal was cata really destroyed their player base with the introduction of RNG, when the game was first release,it was based on RNG and nothing but RNG.  Retribution paladin was unplayable for 2 months after launch, even during beta, they had endless post saying how ret was broken and ask for a fix, nothing was done.

JaxxRaxor
JaxxRaxor

With The Old Republic bowing to pressure and becoming Free-to-Play, WoW is still the only subscription based MMO to have alot of sucess. Even with the drop, 9.2 million subscribers is still a lot. I do think there will be some renewed interest with with the new expansion but I do think that MMOs will have to be free to play/microtransaction to suceed and that will affect even Blizzard eventually.

Darkmoone1
Darkmoone1

Good. WoW made Blizzard soft and lazy. The more they can remove themselves from their money making the machine the more effort they can put into other games making money for them.

dre256x
dre256x

 

Diablo stole a few paying customers, along with other games.... But heck that's still not bad for a 8yr old game (an MMO at that)...

decoy1978
decoy1978

When the pandas become playable thats another gazillion billion trillion of income coming back. Wish they would have spent some of that money fixing up D3...

---Cipher---
---Cipher---

I feel dirty for being one of the 10 million to purchase D3...

SolidTy
SolidTy

Blizzard can always release a World of Starcraft MMO or World of Diablo. They also have two more Starcraft II games incoming and probably a Diablo III expansion.

Aus_AR
Aus_AR

Is this the beginning of the end for WoW? Good, now Blizzard can go back to making great single player games

Rayzakk
Rayzakk

Well I'm sure playingthat kung fu panda expansion will entice people to play WoW lol. 

thom_maytees
thom_maytees

That is nice hear about Diablo III's sales.

emperiox
emperiox

Ahaha good riddance. NOBODY likes the new talent trees for MoP...there's a reason everyone is quitting.