Friday, November 21, 2014

World of Warcraft Numbers Soar to Over Ten Million

Over time, "World of Warcraft," the world's most popular Multiplayer Online Game, has declined in numbers since it's peak of twelve million in 2010. It's numbers would briefly climb after an expansion, then fall again. While still the envy of other game companies, by June 2014 numbers had fallen to 6.8 million, about half of it's peak.

It was known that the latest expansion "Warlords of Draenor" was providing some boost, as 600,000 gamers signed up ahead of time. As it turns out, far more did. On November 19, Blizzard announced that the number of people subscribing to their game had passed ten million. "Blizzard Entertainment today announced that as of the first 24 hours of the expansion’s availability, more than 3.3 million copies had sold-through and the game’s global subscriber base had passed 10 million, with growth across all major regions." Blizzard had not seen these numbers since early 2012.

Mike Fulter of Game Informer commented, "I strongly suspected WoW would rebound, but not by this much. Whether Blizzard can hold onto these returned players in the long-term remains to be seen. Even if numbers start to trail off once more, it shows that there is still great interest in new content for the decade-old MMO." The magazine also mentioned that day that Activision, which is part of the same corporation as Blizzard but exists as a separate entity, settled a lawsuit concerning a buyout a year ago.

The opening day of the fifth expansion of the game was plagued with technical problems, blamed in part due to a Denial of Service attack traced to China. The size of the numbers of people signing up suggests that the problems were at least somewhat less due to hackers, and somewhat more about the expansion being a bigger success than Blizzard expected.

Sources: PC Gamer, Game Informer, Blizzard 

Bixyl Shuftan

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