One of the financial mainstays of Activision Blizzard is World of Warcraft. Month in and month out, it reliably pumps millions into the company’s coffers. But as recent subscriber data tells us, that might not be for much longer.
PC Gamer crunched the numbers from Activision’s last earnings call, and came up with some troubling numbers. First, the game’s subscribers have nearly halved since 2010, from 12 million to 6.8 million. The relatively good news is that the game only lost a million subscribers from July 2013 to July 2014, so the bleeding has been staunched somewhat.
And things could be a hell of a lot worse. It’s the only MMO with double-digit market share, and even respected games have been dying off left and right when it comes to subscriptions. So Blizzard is doing well, compared to its competitors at least.
Of course, there are a whole bunch of people at Bethesda who were drinking heavily throughout the earnings call, since their financial centerpiece this year is a subscription MMO that so far has yet to crack a million subscribers or, for that matter, come out on the consoles it was supposed to be released on. That’s got to sting.
According to data, we’ll have about five years until an angry moon crushes Azaroth or something. Blizzard itself will be just fine; it’s got Diablo III and Hearthstone to keep the doors open. But we suspect at least a few people will be sad to see the end of the World of Warcraft.