It's all speculation right now. I think Cata has lost many more subs faster than is typical for an expansion in NA/EU, but I think 4.1 has brought some back, at least temporarily.
If the long term strategy is to off-set this by going international, which pulls in fractional earnings per subscriber, that will be an interesting strategy.
I'm looking forward to dissecting the numbers in the quarterly earnings report, though the 2nd quarter will be more telling.
Cata has been their best expansion to date. The game is highly playable and enjoyable after 5 years. You might see some players leave after coming back to see what Cata is all about but that is normal after each expansion. The overall numbers are slowly climbing as the game expands internationally. If you are short and want to poke holes in this company look elsewhere. Their MMO biz is rock solid.
12 million or 5 million. The raw number of subs are meaning less. Not all subs are for the same amount the NA/EU subs are the ones to look out for since other subs have a much lower per unit value.
My gut feeling..CATA has been bleeding NA/EU subs hard.
I believe they expected the level 1-60 revamp in Cataclysm to bring more new players into the game in NA/EU. Reportedly they were all set up to open new servers, but the rush never materialized. After a month activity plateaued, then started its precipitous decline.
Right now, the lower level quest zones are reported to be very sparsely populated. What a waste of effort that all was.
another serious factor is that nobody has time to play games anymore anyway..
people are having less kids due to economy..
its a miriad of factors.
i know all my friends who use to play games online, now barely can play once a week as they are working or going to school just to keep from being evicted..
Now days, i believe that due to this factor, people would rather just play a free game online and not pay anything, since they dont have much time to play a game like wow that takes hours upon hours just to do anything in the game.
Playing a free casual free game here or there seems to be the mantra in this economy, if people can play things at all anyway.
I do hope wow recovers but i think too much damage is being done right now. once you lose these many subscribers and population starts declining like this.. you have server closing/consolidations, bad press, and it just gets harder to get those defections back.
So in general, it might be too late, but then again if anyone has the shot at turning things, it surely is WoW over any others out there i suppose.
wow sheezy. Your posts are incredible. You're an idiot beyond means. People in a bad economy have less kids? ARE YOU KIDDING ME???
People in a bad economy have MORE kids not less. In a good economy nobody wants to have kids because everybdoy wants to make MOOONEEEEEEY!!!!!! WAke up moron.
Is this why Africa and other poor countries produce kids like they are going out of style? Because their economies are SUPERPOWERS right?
Your logic makes no sense and applies to your direct family not the rest of the world. Just cause you struggle and live off of Ramen and you couldnt get your last piece of loot in your last nights raid, doesn't mean the rest are having the same issues.
The frightening thing it that people are leaving even without another MMO pulling them away. RIFT (for example) is more the beneficiary of the current WoW malaise than a reason for the decline. Awesome timing, Trion Worlds.
I'm expecting the WoW dev team to crack soon and abandon the suicidal vision they had for this expansion. If not, upper management is going to be replacing those responsible.
the team that made the hit game "hitman" is working on a world war 2 based MMO
take a look
it will be a free-to-play game
call of duty MMO better come out soon or kotick will lose the market