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  1. #1
    Warchief Aeula's Avatar
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    World of Warcraft is 'dying', but not for the reasons you think.

    Ok, since ghostcrawler quit this silly idea that wow is dying due to casualisation has come up ALOT in forums and after a while of reading them i've decided to stop repeating myself and just make one thread to house a discussion regarding the 'real' reason WoW is 'dying'.

    Right for starters lets count how many years old WoW is: nine.

    Thats quite old for a game and to still have so many active players is amazing, yes it's had a few losses these past few expansions, but as much as people think it's not because WoW is becoming casual.

    WoW is dying not because everything is 'easy' those are opinions spread by a vocal minority who seem to have this obsession with vanilla, well let me tell you this: WoW is 'easy' because YOU played it back in vanilla, it's easy because YOU chose the casual MMO over something like....everquest lets say.

    World of Warcraft has ALWAYS been considered a casual game! Even in vanilla other mmo players would mock wow for its casual ways. 'Can't deal with it ? Go play WoW with all those casual babies lol' is one of the phrases i saw around the time of vanilla.
    The thing is...WoW's casualness is why it's so popular and because people played it so much it became more and more apparent to blizzard that the more casual the game was the higher the subs would be, so they made burning crusade, dumbed down content somewhat, added advanced difficulties to try and entertain those who fancied themselves 'hardcore' then they did it again in WotLK, making even heroic dungeons an AoE spam and releasing an incredibly easy raid (Naxx 2.0) as the opening tier.
    But despite all of this casualisation, blizzard where right, the subs climbed and climbed and even stablized for ages, only begining to fall when cataclysm was released, with its sparse content and hard dungeons, by this time the most popular characters from warcraft 3 where dead and after a year or so pause without content, people lost interest.

    It hit the asian community harder, they had to wait several years for the release of WotLK, they had to put up with burning crusade and no new content for much longer than the western countries and many migrated to other mmo's and never came back.

    In closing i belive WoW's hayday is long gone, but i also belive the subs would be even lower if blizzard had stuck to their vanilla model, they needed to move with the times to accomidate and aging and increasingly entitled playerbase whom have less and less time to play as they get jobs, begin families and such.
    Their change from 'hardcore' to 'casual' has provided a small buffer to the sub drops, i have no doubt that it will eventually drop to below one million, but i do not belive that will happen until it's 15th birthday atleast.

    You might not agree with the changes, hell you might even outright hate them and have quit over them, but WoW isn't about you; It's doing its best to survive as long as possible before it enevitably becomes obsolete.

    TL;DR
    WoW is dying because it's old, casualisation was and is nececery to keep the sub drops from falling lower than they would have if blizzard stuck to their vanilla model. WoW has always been casual and blizzard is simply accomodating this for new generations.

    Tip: Listen to the Warlords of Draenor credits, there's a piece of music there you won't hear in game.

  2. #2
    I agree to a certain extent. However the two expansions after WoTLK haven't packed the same thematic punch. I believe if we had a story with the same umph in the story the sub levels would not be dropping as quickly. Personally I am looking forward to WoD simply for the opportunity to shoehorn in cool characters from old Lore.

  3. #3
    between ICC/lich king and now, I've been subbed to the game a total of about 5 months. I recently resubbed and am having quite a bit of fun and I am much looking forward to wod.

    my 2 cents.

  4. #4
    The Insane Slowpoke is a Gamer's Avatar
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    IMO the biggest detractor for the game (besides the horrible daily grind at 90) has been the instability of the game. It seems every other patch is a "massive correction of philosophy to try and stop the sub losses."
    You don't create "justice" by destroying. That includes buildings, cars, or the careers of the people you want "justice" for.


  5. #5
    Judging a game by the amount of people that play it.

    Every single game that has ever been has had a RISE a PEAK and a DECLINE.

    Why does anyone think wow is any different?
    Every man is born as many men and dies as a single one

    -Martin Heidegger

  6. #6
    WoW is losing subs for a variety of reasons. There isn't just one. You could go down the many list of reasons, quite honestly, but it has been done to death.

    The reality is that the game is still going strong, going on 10 years which is absolutely insanity. If you enjoy the game still, great, continue playing. If you don't, maybe it's time to either take a break or move on.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by KClovesGaming View Post
    WoW is losing subs for a variety of reasons. There isn't just one. You could go down the many list of reasons, quite honestly, but it has been done to death.
    No, there is just one. It's getting old. Other games are picking up the WoW model, and have updated graphics and engines. Long time players are getting bored with WoW. All games have a lifespan. WoW's is just really, really long. And everything they've done has been to keep as many subs as possible. The OP is absolutely right here. Even though it seems like as the game gets more casual, the subs drop, that proves nothing. If it weren't more casual, would subs not drop, or would they drop faster?

    The reality is that Blizzard is doing a great job and extending the lifespan of a game in a genre that has never lasted this long before. The fact is, if they suddenly went pure hardcore, there would be about 10% of players (at best) who would be thrilled. Most of those players are the vocal ones, because most of the casual ones don't bother with forums. It seems like, due to what we read online, most people want the game less casual. But that doesn't represent a balanced group of the WoW population. If they made it significantly less casual and more hardcore, you would see a sub drop more massive than ever before because the fact is most of their player base is casual. They like the game the way it is.

    Blizzard did nothing wrong with their choices. Did they piss off the elite hardcore player base? You bet they did, but lucky for them, that's by far a minority. They made the game more and more accommodating for more players. They appealed to more audiences, including non-gamers. By ignoring the elite group and catering to the masses, they've gained subs. Right now, they're in decline because it's old, and there's nothing they can do to reverse it. They can slow it down, which I am confident is what they are doing.

    Do I like all the changes? Do most of the people like all the changes? Doesn't matter, what matters is that, as a business, Blizzard catered to more people than other games have. Business wise, they've been incredibly smart (of course this says nothing of integrity, but only profit). I can't fault them.

    TLDR: OP is right, the only cause of their decline is time, which is inevitable for all games. They've done everything right to keep subs.

  8. #8
    I've never seen a group of people who claim to love something as much as the people here do, spend so much of their time foretelling the doom and end of such thing. It's bizarre.

  9. #9
    People have been saying one reason is because the game is old. This is nothing new.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by shewkoi View Post
    between ICC/lich king and now, I've been subbed to the game a total of about 5 months. I recently resubbed and am having quite a bit of fun and I am much looking forward to wod.

    my 2 cents.
    WOD will bring back old players imo.

    All the naysayers will stop their doom and gloom posts and go play the game instead.

  11. #11
    Warchief Seefer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seegtease View Post
    No, there is just one. It's getting old.
    So you are able to see why everyone unsubscribes? What was my reason back in Crapaclysm? It wasn't because it was old, it was because it sucked.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 3stats View Post
    WOD will bring back old players imo.

    All the naysayers will stop their doom and gloom posts and go play the game instead.
    I honestly don't think it will, wish it would, but I doubt it.
    "Of all the animals, man is the only one that is cruel. He is the only one who inflicts pain for the pleasure of doing it." - Mark Twain

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Seefer View Post
    So you are able to see why everyone unsubscribes? What was my reason back in Crapaclysm? It wasn't because it was old, it was because it sucked.
    You were bored with it. It was not a fresh new game for you. It was old.

    Even if you argue that isn't the reason you left, then I'll remind you that you leaving proves nothing. All it could mean is that you were in the 10% they didn't care about and not in the 90% they were catering to in order to maximize profits. They made things easier and more accessible. A lot of loud players didn't like this, but many, many more quiet players were happy with it. Some of those loud players left, and some of those quiet players subbed. If you lose 100k elitist hardcore players but gain 1 million casuals, that's a net gain. It's worth it, even if it pisses you, personally, off.

    Trust me, there are always more people who enjoy the casual approach than people who hate it. That means Blizzard is doing all they can do to hold onto subs, but the decline is inevitable. It's an old game. The original player base may be mostly gone, but they have replacements.

  13. #13
    Warchief Seefer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seegtease View Post
    You were bored with it. It was not a fresh new game for you. It was old.

    Even if you argue that isn't the reason you left, then I'll remind you that you leaving proves nothing. All it could mean is that you were in the 10% they didn't care about and not in the 90% they were catering to in order to maximize profits. They made things easier and more accessible. A lot of loud players didn't like this, but many, many more quiet players were happy with it. Some of those loud players left, and some of those quiet players subbed. If you lose 100k elitist hardcore players but gain 1 million casuals, that's a net gain. It's worth it, even if it pisses you, personally, off.

    Trust me, there are always more people who enjoy the casual approach than people who hate it. That means Blizzard is doing all they can do to hold onto subs, but the decline is inevitable. It's an old game. The original player base may be mostly gone, but they have replacements.
    If I was bored why would I be playing it now? Fact is, Crapaclysm just sucked in my opinion, it had nothing to do with how easy or hard things were and everything to do with the content just SUCKED, I didn't care about Deathwing which is disappointing because he was one of my favorites in lore but he was barely even seen! The dungeons were crap (hard or easy they just sucked), Firelands imo sucked, the daily hub sucked, the questing sucked.........it all sucked, again I don't care about how easy or hard it was, it was just piss poor content, and I back to playing and have been since MoP.
    "Of all the animals, man is the only one that is cruel. He is the only one who inflicts pain for the pleasure of doing it." - Mark Twain

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by 3stats View Post
    WOD will bring back old players imo.

    All the naysayers will stop their doom and gloom posts and go play the game instead.
    With what exactly? WoD looks pretty bare bones, has a story that's hard to relate, and doesn't appear to be bringing back old features that have been removed. It also isn't dialing back the extreme usability features that shifted most of the game into menus and queues either.
    blah, new sig... something something

  15. #15
    Lets not forget the community as a whole. So many people become jerks every day because on the anonymity. I have played with pugs, guild, friends and the finder and just get really annoyed with the trolls and smart asses. A lot of people just can't stand the childish and ignorant behavior of people these days. Need an example? Read trade chat for 20 mins or read the chat in random group stuff like LFR or LFD.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Aaronese View Post
    I agree to a certain extent. However the two expansions after WoTLK haven't packed the same thematic punch. I believe if we had a story with the same umph in the story the sub levels would not be dropping as quickly. Personally I am looking forward to WoD simply for the opportunity to shoehorn in cool characters from old Lore.
    Because TBC and Wrath were related/relevant from past Warcraft 3 games. A huge amount of established Lore and characters many people remember. After Wrath, its new-ish Lore thats not as well established.

  17. #17
    The problem with the game is that it DOES get old. There are games you can play over and over again and have the same amount of fun each and every time, even though you're playing through the exact same content every time. There is just some charm the game has that satisfies you when you play it. Somewhere along the line, it seems that WoW lost this charm.

    I personally think it's due to the lack of immersion in the world. The world feels very fake a lot of the time to me, like I'm just a player running around in a theme park instead of a part of the world. However, I do remember being immersed well enough in the past, perhaps around the BC to WoTLK time. At that time, I couldn't get enough of the game, and it didn't get "old" no matter how much I played.

    I'm pretty sure it's not just me, not only because lots of players feel the same way, but there are still games that have that charm that keeps me coming back, even after so many years. One such game is Dark Souls, and it's perhaps because I can feel pretty immersed in that world as well as have fun playing my character. That's why I say that WoW lacks immersion now and so it gets old for me, since I can still feel the charming feeling certain games have, even in my mid-twenties with recent or older games. WoW just seems to have lost that charm. Here's hoping WoD brings some of it back.

  18. #18
    Common fallacy you see over and over:

    "DUR, WoW was always a casual MMO, therefore it's not too casual now."

    I'm sorry, but there IS such a thing at TOO casual.

    Maybe EQ was not casual enough and original WoW was the sweet spot?

    Just because WoW was the casual alternative to EQ doesn't excuse it for going off the deep end in "casualization"

  19. #19
    when the game was elite, casuals had something to aspire to. They now have nothing to work toward, they afk their 496 and then que for lfr and afk.

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Zaqwert View Post
    Common fallacy you see over and over:

    "DUR, WoW was always a casual MMO, therefore it's not too casual now."

    I'm sorry, but there IS such a thing at TOO casual.

    Maybe EQ was not casual enough and original WoW was the sweet spot?

    Just because WoW was the casual alternative to EQ doesn't excuse it for going off the deep end in "casualization"
    But the entire MMO market has gone more casual. More games like EQ don't really pop up... most of the games that come out now ARE more casual because that's where the market has shifted. But WoW has always been the most casual. When other more casual games pop up, WoW gets more casual to adjust to the market and competitors. Their ability to adjust is why they really HAVE no meaningful competitors (meaningful is intended to exclude stuff like farmville).

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