World of Warcraft Loses Another 1.3 Million Subscribers

The MMO market is changing, and not even Blizzard's powerhouse MMO is immune. At its height, World of Warcraft boasted over 10 million subscribers. The numbers began sinking in mid-to-late 2012, and Blizzard lost over 1 million subscriptions within a matter of months. When Mists of Pandaria released in October last year, the MMO quickly regained those lost subscriptions.

With players burning through the new expansion content and annual subscriptions from the free Diablo III deal ending, Blizzard's lost yet another 1.3 million subscriptions. Now, the total number of WoW subscriptions sits at 8.3 million as of March 31, 2013. That many subscribed players is still nothing to scoff at, but seeing the enormous declines that WoW's been experiencing (it's lost the player base equivalent of two popular MMOs, after all) it won't be long before Blizzard starts feeling the effects.

The good news is that Activision-Blizzard is well aware of the shaky footing that WoW stands on. "Though the majority of our subscriber decline occurred mainly in the East, where we have more subscribers and lower revenue per subscriber, we saw declines in the West as well," Activision-Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick stated. "While we do believe further declines are likely and we expect to have fewer subscribers at year-end than we do today, World of Warcraft remains one of the most successful franchises in the history of entertainment."

Of course, Blizzard's response to combat the declining numbers is to do the only thing it can do: release more content. "It's important to note that the nature of online games has changed, and with the environment becoming far more competitive, especially with free-to-play games," said Kotick. "To address this, we're working to release new content more frequently to keep our players engaged longer and make it easier for lapsed players to come back into the game. We believe in the long-term value of this franchise and will continue to commit substantial resources to World of Warcraft."

  • edogawa
    I tried playing again just recently, it's just not what it used to be, and I used to be a huge wow player with multiple accounts. I think it's time WoW was shut down instead of continuously making it worse.
  • eklipz330
    "We believe in the long-term value of this franchise and will continue to commit substantial resources to World of Warcraft."
    In layman's:
    " we are going to milk this shit for all its worth!"
  • wildkitten
    I don't believe for a moment they lost most of their subs in the East. Mists of Pandaria hasn't sold as many copies to date as Burning Crusade and Wrath of the Lich King did on their first day of release, and subscribers in the East don't buy box copies, they merely pay their monthly sub fee. Only those in the west pay for the box copies and so to believe that the west has the majority of subs you have to believe the vast majority of WoW players don't have the latest expansion, or even Cataclysm.

    Bobby Kotick has been the worse thing that has ever happened to Blizzard. WoW was at 12 million subscribers when he took over and it's only declined since. Look at the disaster Diablo 3 has been. With the major missteps with WoW and the disastrous launch of D3, way to many people will take a wait and see approach to Titan and that won't be in Blizzard's best interest.
  • rabbit2012
    I'm sorry but if you think WoW is pay to win, you don't understand what that term means. In WoW the only thing you can pay for is pets/mounts that affect nothing. You can't buy PvP or PvE gear with a credit card.
  • daswilhelm
    been bad for awhile now. sad.
  • tobalaz
    I was in the Beta.
    Loved it.
    Played it up until the 5th skill tree revamp.
    Got sick of the constant re-spec and working my tail off in game for weapons and armor to compliment my skills then become meaningless with a re-spec or nerf.
    Something I loved to do became frustrating, and the content would get stale fast.
    There's only so many times you can start over with new characters, its still a grind and grinding gets old after a while.
  • slomo4sho
    I am surprised that 8.3 million still pay to play this game.
  • hotroderx
    I started playing WOW a few weeks into release, and have played off and on. Wow's biggest downfall was how popular it became. The community has steadily gotten worse and worse over the years. Which has caused blizzard to have to dumb down content to the point of being face roll easy.
    When I play video games I want a challenged I want something stimulating. I want to feel excited when I finally do down that boss. I want to feel I accomplished something.
    Wow has almost become the Farmville of mmo's. They removed talent tree's, they destroyed raid difficulty. they added a buff to the raid finder tool (that buffs a raid up to 50% if they continue wipe on content).
    The other major strikes against World of Warcraft are the obscene amount of daily's. Who really wants to be required to run the same set of quest 100-200 times for rep to get gear? Then we have challenger dungons I think there called? There three man dungeons no one does. Blizzard continues to push them on the community. Then there are the insane wait times from the Looking for group. As a DPS your looking at 30min-1hr of sitting in front of the computer waiting for a cue to pop.
    I know a lot of people will argue dont roll DPS. That argument does not work when it comes to blizzard the company. Thats like your cell phone company telling you not to make phone calls during peak if you dont wanna have to wait to be connected.
    So no its not surprising blizzards World of Warcraft is slowly starting to fade out. I think it will be around another 10 years reasonably I think there will be another 1-2 expansions then the game will be shelved.
  • amuffin
    Must be League.
  • itchyisvegeta
    Call me when it is free to play. Until then, not worth my investment in time and money.