It's not all doom and gloom: EG.Fear returns to Dota 2

Warlords of Draenor will herald the end of Justice and Valour point currency

Capcom release public beta for Ultra Street Fighter IV to K.O. netcode issues

World of Warcraft

Don’t call it a decline: World of Warcraft subscriptions are back up a bit

Warlords of Draenor is scheduled for release before the end of the year.

MMO doomsayers like to characterise World of Warcraft’s twilight years the way Telltale describe The Walking Dead - like a man slipping inexorably down a hill, desperately grasping for things to hold onto.

In actuality, Blizzard are playing ongoing WoW development more like Tiny Wings - keeping their heads down to ensure the highest possible peak after each trough. Mists of Pandaria came out at the tail end of 2012, and first annual expansion Warlords of Draenor isn’t due till later this year - but the books have already turned up again.

The MMOiest of the MMOs currently hosts 7.8 million monthly subscribers, Blizzard told investors last night. That figure’s up 200,000 from November, when the developers last talked numbers.

WoW subscriptions peaked in late 2010 at a positively silly 12 million. They’ve declined steadily since - contributing to a 25% decline in Activision’s PC revenues, from $1.071 billion in 2012 to $805 million in 2013.

It’s still far and away the most successful subscription MMO in the business. And while Hearthstone will be funded through in-game pack purchases, Blizzard head Mike Morhaime dismissed the idea of a free-to-play option in WoW as recently as November.

“We've always taken the business model on a case by case basis,” said Morhaime at BlizzCon. “In the case of World of Warcraft, the first 20 levels are free. It wasn't designed as a free-to-play game. I don't see that type of transition happening in World of Warcraft, although we are always looking for new ways to make the game more accessible.”

Warlords of Draenor will catapult new players to level 90, allowing them immediate access to its great-looking RTS-ish garrison features. Will that make subscribers of any of you?

Login or Register
1
+1
-0
Shriven's picture
1340

I must admit, the changes and planned changes have me more than a little curious, so much so that if someone were to have a scroll of resurrection to send me, id use it.

2
+2
-0
Tim Edwards's picture
313

I'll send you one - what's your username/battletag?

Alienware - Game VictoriousNvidia Shield - Titanfall
Warlords of Draenor cinematic revealed; expansion launches on November 13th thumbmail

World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor

Warlords of Draenor cinematic revealed; expansion launches on November 13th

Warlords of Draenor will herald the end of Justice and Valour point currency thumnnail

Warlords of Draenor will herald the end of Justice and Valour point currency

Take a whirlwind tour of Warlords of Draenor  thumnnail

Take a whirlwind tour of Warlords of Draenor

CLOSED: We've got 1000 Warlords of Draenor beta keys to giveaway thumnnail

CLOSED: We've got 1000 Warlords of Draenor beta keys to giveaway

Watch the Warlords of Draenor cinematic and street-date reveal thumnnail

Watch the Warlords of Draenor cinematic and street-date reveal

World of Warcraft's 10 year anniversary will be filled with corgis and violence  thumnnail

World of Warcraft's 10 year anniversary will be filled with corgis and violence

Here are all the new cards coming to Hearthstone: Curse of Naxxramas thumbmail

Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft

Here are all the new cards coming to Hearthstone: Curse of Naxxramas

Blizzard previews Warlords of Draenor's Nagrand: home of the Warsong Outriders thumnnail

Blizzard previews Warlords of Draenor's Nagrand: home of the Warsong Outriders

Slap your eyes on Warlords of Draenor's cinematic trailer on August 14th; launch date reveal planned, too thumnnail

Slap your eyes on Warlords of Draenor's cinematic trailer on August 14th; launch date reveal planned, too

World of Warcraft's Alliance is getting a chopper after all  thumnnail

World of Warcraft's Alliance is getting a chopper after all

Full steam ahead: World of Warcraft's Grimrail Depot dungeon is sure to become a favourite  thumnnail

Full steam ahead: World of Warcraft's Grimrail Depot dungeon is sure to become a favourite

A British MP asked for in-game theft to be treated like real-world theft thumnnail

A British MP asked for in-game theft to be treated like real-world theft

The best Hearthstone decks for beginners thumbmail

Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft

The best Hearthstone decks for beginners

Elder Scrolls Online apparently has more than 750,000 subscribers thumnnail

Elder Scrolls Online apparently has more than 750,000 subscribers

World of Warcraft's art director unveils Draenei 2.0 thumnnail

World of Warcraft's art director unveils Draenei 2.0

Hearthstone's Curse of Naxxramas won't cost you your soul thumnnail

Hearthstone's Curse of Naxxramas won't cost you your soul

Hearthstone's Curse of Naxxramas expansion will kick you out of the tavern and into a dungeon next month thumnnail

Hearthstone's Curse of Naxxramas expansion will kick you out of the tavern and into a dungeon next month

World of Warcraft's human male MKII thumnnail

World of Warcraft's human male MKII

Why Heroes of the Storm is the MOBA Blizzard always wanted to play thumbmail

Heroes of the Storm

Why Heroes of the Storm is the MOBA Blizzard always wanted to play

Blizzard reveals your first steps into Draenor: Tanaan Jungle thumnnail

Blizzard reveals your first steps into Draenor: Tanaan Jungle

Ding: World of Warcraft player hits level 90 on his neutral Pandaren thumnnail

Ding: World of Warcraft player hits level 90 on his neutral Pandaren

Warlords of Draenor's patch notes will keep you reading until launch thumnnail

Warlords of Draenor's patch notes will keep you reading until launch

World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor alpha invites in the mail (for some) thumnnail

World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor alpha invites in the mail (for some)

Ben Foster to play prophet Medivh in Warcraft movie thumnnail

Ben Foster to play prophet Medivh in Warcraft movie