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WoW Down to 9.6 Million Subscribers
Activision Blizzard's press release states that World of Warcraft is down to 9.6 million subscribers as of December 31, 2012. This is lower than the amount of subscribers from the "over 10 million" announced for Q3 2012. A few other interesting points:

  • Mists of Pandaria was the #3 best-selling PC game at retail.
  • Diablo III was the #1 best-selling PC game at retail, breaking PC-game sales records with more than 12 million copies sold worldwide through December 31, 2012.
This article was originally published in forum thread: WoW Down to 9.6 Million Subscribers started by chaud View original post
Comments 963 Comments
  1. Belize's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Garian View Post
    A 500k drop in subs is huge. Especially if they are in the U.S. or Europe.
    It's a tiny dent really. IT'S NOT A WOW KILLER!!
  1. spoon77's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by kojinshugi View Post
    No it didn't. It peaked at 12 in Wrath. It never hit 11 until Wrath.
    Here is a compilation of Blizzard's publically released subscription volumes.

    Note that WotLK was released on November 13th 2008 making Q3 2008 the last model for BC.
  1. Jtbrig7390's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Immitis View Post
    wow peaked at almost 13 million subscribers at the launch of cata,
    Please show this because the first Report of cata had around a 300k sub lose wow ended WOTLK with 12.5mil subs.

    Feel free to provide me the blizzard report showing me wrong but from what I remember the first report came right after ghost crawlers "DUNGEONS ARE 2 HARD" comment and it was a 300k-500k sub drop. even shows wow never hit 13mil subs.

    Funny thing is i do remember a few tv ad's stating wow had 15mil subs back in WOTLK but it could have been a fuck up.
  1. GrieverXIII's Avatar
    wo iz ded lolilol
  1. Duster505's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by kojinshugi View Post
    Normal raids aren't hard. They're easier than half the stuff in BC. They're about Ulduar level of difficulty at the moment.

    And when has more than 3% of the playerbase ever finished normal mode raid content? If by playerbase you mean every single subscriber, including people who don't raid at all?

    Seriously, in BC most people were herpaderping in Karazhan until the Sunwell patch brought JP loot for all. In Wrath, hardly anyone finished Ulduar until they were decked out in ICC gear. How many people killed normal Ragnaros in Cata?

    It's like you've only ever raided during Dragon Soul with a 20% debuff or something. Trust me, in 6 months, current content will be equally faceroll and puggable.
    True - normal raids are not hard. The hard part is to find the group that bother. PPL are more likely to bother if they dont get stuck on a boss for weeks when the tank got sick or the best spec healer had to take vacation.

    Normal PROGRESSION should be based on guilds that have normal players doing the normal average every day stuff. MOP is way overtuned for that to work. Loose one or 2 players in less deticated guilds and the expansion is pretty much over. And Im talking populated servers....
  1. Necrosaro123's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by spoon77 View Post
    It's rather ironic how you're talking, considering you're completely wrong. WoW peaked at 11m subscribers during Burning Crusade.

    There are plenty of online sources available for you to verify that.
    12m susbs during WOTLK, why? because it was the best expansion of WoW, best boss, heroics, raids and even quests. And i'm not like those hypocrites that tell everyone that loves BC because idk what.... I keep playing WOTLK raids with my friends all the weekends. We go to those old raids because those mobs are "worthy" of being killed. Ulduar, ICC and The eye are my favorite ones, only The Ruby Sanctum sucks, even Vault of Archavon bosses are amazing. CATA was the reason of so many subs being lost, that expansion was the worst of all and the start of the decay of WoW
  1. BlackenedHearts's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by fangless View Post
    What a funny article.

    A game is only down to 9.6 MILLION.

    Wasn't it supposed to be dying in Cataclysm too?


    12 million, 1 million, I still log in to do my own thing regardless.
    Completely Agree, If you play and do your own thing than this doesn't Affect your play at all.
  1. Granyala's Avatar
    Looks good. Certainly not as bad as I expected.

    Though the data is from Dec, so the number will be lower now due to content drought.
    It'll go up again after 5.2.
  1. Lumineus's Avatar
    Predictable. Probably should have done content nerfs sooner.
  1. Immitis's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Jtbrig7390 View Post
    Please show this because the first Report of cata had around a 300k sub lose wow ended WOTLK with 12.5mil subs.

    Feel free to provide me the blizzard report showing me wrong but from what I remember the first report came right after ghost crawlers "DUNGEONS ARE 2 HARD" comment and it was a 300k-500k sub drop.
    i said launch. the first quarter after cata launched yes it had already went down. ill go try to look for it, i remember it was pretty much cata release when they said they had almost 13 million. wasnt quite 13 million but almost... then it dropped first quarter of cata
  1. GrieverXIII's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Lumineus View Post
    Predictable. Probably should have done content nerfs sooner.
    Pretty sure all those subs aren't only garbage raiders.
  1. Canderous1's Avatar
    i love how if you look objectively at a 500k drop out of 10+ million subscribers and you dont really think its much of a big deal, you're a fanboi!

    its gonna affect their bottom line, sure, but will it really affect wow any? not likely.
  1. kojinshugi's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Exodeus View Post
    I'm still subbed but i hate dailies with a passion i'd much rather still be needing to farm 50 soulshards and 20+ essence of air(for the gold for flasks,pots,food,mana oil, scrolls and so on) per day, dailies for silly coins and valour just to give you a edge/boost is beyond boring and you HAVE to do the dailies cause all the valour gear is locked behind it and as soon as you are finally done they release a new faction with yes even more dailies.......
    And as for rep farmin i'd rather farm the damn cave in silithus for twilight texts or run with those dusts then the fucking dailies!!!!
    Atleast then i could do my farming when i damn well pleased and not have to log in every day otherwise i have fallen behind again FUCK DAILIES!
    Thank fucking god Blizzard does not design the game according to the preferences of people who prefer hours of mindless, repetitive grinding to performing the same basic actions in short, structured quests that vary from day to day.

    The idea that missing a day leaves you "behind" is preposterous. Do 45 dailies a week, whenever you want them, and you have enough for charms. You can do that in two days. Miss an entire week of August Celestials, and you're still gaining rep at a speed that's way ahead of how fast you can earn valor to spend.

    It's literally impossible to earn enough valor to require doing dailies every day. It's literally impossible to spend enough charms to require doing dailies every day. You neglected to spend 10 minutes working out your progression path, and deluded yourself into thinking you're "forced" into dailies. You are literally a man punching himself in the face and then yelling at everyone else for "making you do it".
  1. errosync's Avatar
    If a 12 million sub based MMO game is not able to keep their game updated with decent content and good progress... Then it shouldn't be a sub based game. Thats how bad Blizzard is doing atm.
    Yeah, they're doing so bad that, during a world-wide recession, they lost over a million subs and still kept MAKING money rather than losing it. I also love that train of logic that clearly shows you haven't a single clue as to what good business management is or how to even do it remedially.

    Love very often turns to hate. Many of the haters once loved the game and hate to see it in its current state.
    Many of the haters also have illogical thought patterns and, if they ran the show, would drive this game into the ground with their lack of knowledge that honestly puts them at a disadvantage with an average junior-high schooler. I've said it before and I'll say it again: if you really think you can do better, go out and do it. Make your own MMO, advertise for it, keep it updated, pay for the space to house all the hardware (because that doesn't just come from thin air) and make sure it's constantly maintenanced. If you don't want to do that, then quit bitching because you haven't a leg to stand on.

    So - BLizzard already failed to improve on Cata model when it comes to that.
    What issues? Compared to WHAT? Is explaining your stance and supporting in via evidence really that difficult? If you're not going to take the time to explain your preferences and set up a frame of reference for us, then why in the hell do you expect us to spend our time reading what you have to say?

    Cause Blizzard made normals harder than what they were before
    But if heroics were too hard for you, it would be okay? Seriously, what kind of bullshit double-standard is that? If you aren't good enough to do Normal modes now, go back to LFR, read some guides, find a better guild or just stop being garbage and play the game better. There are plenty of outlets for people who are not good at the game to feel like they're succeeding; don't fuck up a good raid progression model because YOU (who used to sit at .0001% of the population) can't hack it.

    Are we seeing the end of WoW? Not really. 9 million is far and away an extreme success. Are we seeing WoW no longer in it's prime? Definitely.
    Yeah, because the world having financial problems, other options existing, games in completely other genres selling enormously well and the MMO-RPG being still a fairly niche genre have NOTHING to do with any of this. I am glad we have so many resident experts in Business Management, Financial Planning, Economics and Trend Forecasting; thank the heavens you guys are here. It's nice to know where this game is going even if none of you coughing up degrees or even coursework that suggest you know what you're talking about.

    I also love how people talk about the game being in its 'prime' when that time forced you to go through long, multi-step attunements, lengthy rep grinds, bosses that were far too difficult for the level they were supposed to be tuned to, a bottlenecked raid design, heroic instances that necessitated specific group make-ups leaving some people out in the cold, mechanics that were incredibly unpolished, and a multi-player scene that shattered beyond belief. I was playing a game from 2007 a couple of days ago and while it was good for 2007, it was garbage for 2013. Do you REALLY want that back?
  1. Duster505's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Lumineus View Post
    Predictable. Probably should have done content nerfs sooner.
    Their nerfs are coming after 5.2... so way to late for most of the players anyway. They are now creating raid content for only very few % of the playerbase. PPL that have played raid content hate LFR cause thats not what they are looking for. I was hoping they would be tuning normal raids better to give ppl really meaningful progression through the expansion. They failed with that. Exactly the same they did in CATA first raid tier where they claimed to few % of playerbase had done the first tier to release next tier after 6 months...

    The progression in Normal raids is not right atm. Pretty much all that bothered to do Normal raids should get it done within 2 months. It takes less than 3 hours to do it in LFR so that should be acceptable.

    The truth about normal raiding is ... that difficulty of the content is not the issue. PPL have real life and when ppl get stuck on a boss for weeks based on different reasons... they will loose interest and quit.
  1. Frozenshiva's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Duster505 View Post
    The thing is... most players playing WOW are looking for the same thing. Blizzard has just not done good enough job to keep those players.

    Let me make one example. There are alot of old WOW players that were raiding but dont have the time anymore. For those players LFR is a total disgrace. Still they dont have the time or the group of players to progress their character through normal raiding modes. Main reason ? Because its overtuned for the normal progression model that players find acceptable. So.. result is that many of those old raiders that knew what raiding was all about ... have LFR or just quit. And the answer is for most... quit.

    Thats just example of players that loved the game but now hate what LFR has turned it into. It would have been better to allow guilds to have a good progression based raiding content. Right now under 3% of the playerbase have done latest tier in NORMAL mode. And the nerf ... is coming after 5.2.

    RPGs are progression based. Give players good progression with MEANINGFULL content and they will stay. LFR and dailies are not meaningfull content.

    See.. this is what i don't get.... You contradict me..fair enough... with an argument you contradict yourself in?

    I don't even..

    Aside from contradicting yourself, you're also advocating something not exactly related to what i said, aside from an assumed sense of understanding what i said.

    You first attribute the drop in subscribers to demographic shifts. Then you continue with the argument that only a select few progress through normal mode, further strengthening your argument with the fact that players require progression to stick around, which goes against your initial state that players quite because they progress? I mean..what?

    That's not even counting the fact that you're referring to a minority as a "majority". We know for a fact the number of subscribers dropped by ~5%. Last i checked 5% is still far away off from 100%, or even 50% for that matter.

    I'm pretty sure i know what you wanted to say, but i'm also pretty sure what you actually said is not what you wanted to say.

    You're also analyzing the entire thing in a bubble, which is simply stupid.
  1. Ozteck's Avatar
    Count this sub done in the Q1.

    Dailies were the death of 8 continuous years.
  1. kojinshugi's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Canderous1 View Post
    i love how if you look objectively at a 500k drop out of 10+ million subscribers and you dont really think its much of a big deal, you're a fanboi!

    its gonna affect their bottom line, sure, but will it really affect wow any? not likely.
    It's a 5% drop. How is a 5% drop a big deal?

    If Rift went from 1 million to 950k, would that be a big deal?
  1. AK_47's Avatar
    Was to be expected, 6 months since Pandaria and the first REAL patch content is not out yet.
  1. Aquamonkey's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Tharkkun View Post
    Point to where that information resides in any of the recent Press releases. THANKS!

    4:23PM Activision Blizzard beats by $0.06, beats on revs; guides Q1 EPS in-line, revs below consensus; guides FY13 EPS below consensus, revs below consensus; increases cash dividend to $0.19/share (ATVI) 12.06 +0.12 : Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.78 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.06 better than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of $0.72; revenues rose 7.8% year/year to $2.6 bln vs the $2.44 bln consensus.

    Co issues mixed guidance for Q1, sees EPS of $0.10, excluding non-recurring items, vs. $0.10 Capital IQ Consensus Estimate; sees Q1 revs of $690 mln vs. $716.16 mln Capital IQ Consensus Estimate.
    Co issues downside guidance for FY13, sees EPS of $0.80, excluding non-recurring items, vs. $0.98 Capital IQ Consensus Estimate; sees FY13 revs of $4.175 bln vs. $4.57 bln Capital IQ Consensus Estimate.
    Additionally, on March 12, 2013, Blizzard Entertainment expects to release StarCraft? II: Heart of the Swarm , the first expansion to Blizzard's award-winning real-time strategy game StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty?.
    It's in the Quarterly Reports. All of them. And I rounded up.

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