Blizzard Entertainment announced earlier that World of Warcraft lost a pretty big number of subscribers again. As of June 30, the most popular MMORPG of all time can account for 6.8 million subs, down from 7.6 million it had back in March. That’s a 800.000 drop in just a few months and the numbers will probably continue to go down for at lest a while longer. This can be attributed to the fact that the current content is at the end of its life cycle according to Blizzard President Mike Morhaime. However, he is confident that things will pick up once again as we approach the release date of World of Warcraft’s latest expansion pack, Warlords of Draenor.
“We anticipated fluctuation in subscribership due to seasonality and the fact that the current game content is at the end of its life cycle,” Morhaime said. “And as expected, we did see a decline in subscribers, which mostly came out of the east. This pattern is right in line, percentage-wise, with the drops that we saw at Cataclysm’s cycle in Q2 2012. That drop in 2012 was followed by an uptick in subscribers just ahead of Mists of Pandaria’s launch. So we’re hoping to see players return once we draw closer to the release of Warlords of Draenor later this year.”
Pre-orders for Warlords of Draenor are reportedly around the 1.5 million mark so we can expect the subscribers to rise again once the expansion kicks in. Morhaime also mentions that player feedback from the Beta has been very positive so far and the community appears to be ready for new content. The expansion definitely looks very promising so a lot of players might return to World of Warcraft to check it out. Meanwhile, Blizzard’s President says that the Battle.net community keeps growing and is about 40% bigger compared to 2013. This is hardly surprising as the company has a lot of other project going on at the moment besides World of Warcraft.
Earlier this year Blizzard released Hearthstone, a free-to-play CCG which has attracted a lot of attention and is currently one of the most popular esports around, especially after the release of its expansion, Curse of Naxxramas. The company is also working on a MOBA game called Heroes of the Storm, which features heroes from the Warcraft, Startcraft, and Diablo franchises. Needless to say, this upcoming title has attracted a lot of attention as well, even though it’s currently just in its Technical Alpha testing phase. The release date for World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor will be announced on August 14th as part of a premier event where its cinematic will also be revealed.