There's no denying the fact that World of Warcraft is Blizzard's cash cow. With the success behind all that, why would a company want to mess with the winning formula? On the other hand, it might also make sense for the developer to make another MMO for it to cash in even further to feed on gamers' massively multiplayer addictions – something Blizzard intends to do, as it is making another MMO.
Whatever the new MMO might be, it'll be "significantly differentiated" from World of Warcraft, Blizzard COO Paul Sams told Wired.
Sams said that Blizzard aims for its next MMO to be distinct enough so that gamers might be interested in investing time into both, but in the end, Blizzard will be happy to grab customers from any of its products.
"And so maybe they’ll split a little over time, or maybe they’ll decide they don’t want to play WoW anymore, and they’ll go and play this other thing. That’s a high-class problem to have," said Sams. "As long as those folks are hanging out with us, which I believe they will be because we’re going to keep providing the best experience you can have. So, while there could be other games out there, if the bad thing that happens to us is that they leave WoW and go to this other thing of Blizzard’s, then we’ll work through that pain."
Diehard Blizzard fans might find themselves with less time to play WoW when StarCraft II releases, something the developer has already considered.
"With Starcraft II, we may have some of that happen, even though they’re different types of games," he said. "The coolest thing about Starcraft II is, if you’re good, it’s a short-session game. You can play that in really bite-size chunks. You can go onto Battle.net and really whoop someone down, and then go get back and raid. It’s one of those things where I think people will mix their gaming pleasures, and hopefully those pleasures will be ones brought forward by Blizzard."
Of course, with StarCraft II pushed until the first half of 2010, there's still plenty of time for Blizzard to rake it in for WoW.
So yes, they are right to make a new MMO even if it competes with WOW, overall there should be a net gain on player numbers no matter if some migrate away from WOW.