has been raking in the dough from its hugely successful subscription-based MMORPG
game World of Warcraft
for many years, but it appears as though the game is a just past it peak. According to the company’s Q1 2013 earnings report, the game lost 1.3 million subscribers in the last three months alone, dropping the game’s subscription numbers to 8.3 million subscribers. This follows the loss of about 1 million subscribers last summer
The current losses primarily came from the East, meaning that the West is still very much in love with the game, but Activision Blizzard CEO Robert A. Kotick seems to accept the fact that it’s only a matter of time until WoW
fizzles out; he also expects there to be fewer subscribers at the end of 2013 than there are now.
While pointing out that WoW “remains one of the most successful franchises in the history of entertainment”, Kotick said, “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. 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.”
The company definitely plans to put plenty of resources behind the game, which makes plenty of sense, as even though WoW’s demise is coming, it probably won’t come for many more years, and in that time Activision Blizzard can continue to milk that cash cow for all its worth.