WoW loses 800K subscribers, Blizzard hangs hopes on panda-filled future

Last October we heard the subscriber base of MMO juggernaut World of Warcraft had slipped some since its peak of 12 million players. In fact it lost almost a million users in less than a year. In the recent Activision-Blizzard earnings call we found out that downward trend has only continued, as WoW lost another 800,000, bringing the total to a still monstrous 10.3 million. If Blizzard is worried, they aren’t showing it, as the mega-developer believes the user base will expand again soon thanks to the magic of pandas…

In yesterday’s earnings report Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime blamed the slump on a lack of engaging casual content in the last expansion Cataclysm. That’s something the next one, Mist of Panderia, intends to fix, with plans for Pokemon-esque monster collecting and fuzzy, lovable Brewmasters. Also, there are other smaller updates coming along the way to keep the current install base happy. That’s all well and good, but what’s really annoying is they didn’t use this call to finally confirm a true Diablo III release date. Sigh…


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  • mubobi7593 - November 10, 2011 7:31 a.m.

    I don't care what people say, I'm PUMPED for Mists. I think they'll be able to get a lot of mileage out of what was originally a "joke" race. So excited!
  • stitchjones - November 10, 2011 6:07 a.m.

    Not going to happen, Cataclysm was such a huge let down that many people are just burnt out with the game.
  • Balaska - November 9, 2011 10:44 p.m.

    Hah Nightcrawler, Bobby Kotick has platinum buttscratchers to buy, WoW won't be going feee anytime soon. For me, Wrath of the Lich King was the Zenith, I just didn't enjoy Cataclysm as much. After playing the game since day one, I have finally quit and I fully understand why the other 800000 have as well. Roll on Star Wars :D
  • rballa2 - November 9, 2011 10:26 p.m.

    Henry, when does the embargo on skyrim reviews end?
  • GamesRadarMatthewKeast - November 9, 2011 11:50 p.m.

    You'll be seeing my review early tomorrow morning.
  • rballa2 - November 10, 2011 6:48 a.m.

    I live in Central time zone, so early is relative.
  • Evanesco - November 9, 2011 9:09 p.m.

    This game will stall.
  • Octaviux - November 9, 2011 7:13 p.m.

    I love the Warcraft franchise but I think Cataclysm was the zenith of WoW for many. This expansion will only be a continuation of the long slow death of an increasingly graying King on the throne.
  • NightCrawler_358 - November 9, 2011 6:36 p.m.

    I'm no WoW player, but if Mists doesn't do well, maybe they'll remove or at least lower the subcription fee. Its already free to lvl 20, maybe itll be free to the cap in the original WoW. Just look how popular LOTRO and DCUO got after they became free. Then again, over 10 million subs is too much money to lose.

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