Well it seems Blizzard has more than one cash cow after all, as Diablo 3 made a fair crop of cash for the studio (Polygon article). 20 million sales of the game. The subscribers numbers for WoW have lead some folk to say that WoW is in trouble, and perhaps even the concept of an MMO is in trouble too (MMO’s are dying). I don’t buy into that because frankly I think MMOs are another arrow in the quiver of game styles that gamers like myself enjoy. D3 was popular, as was D1&D2; they’re not the same as WoW, but they represent that games are still able to make a tidy profit and that the audience for games hasn’t evaporated as much as some of the end of the world style blog titles imply. These games don’t signal the end of anything except the short period while one game has it’s pinnacle of popularity. I’ll wait for D4 happily, or a variant clone from another source happily.
The games will transform, might shudder a bit, but multiplayer games have been around for a darn long time, and we’re only seeing better and better graphics and gameplay as the decades roll along. A good game is worth paying for. A great game is worth following, and any studio which can release a solid product often will garner loyalty from wallets. As much as I sometimes dislike small parts of Blizzard’s approach, they do keep creatig things I find fun. I don’t kickstart/crowdfund much at all because I think I could use my money on other things, and the risk is not worth it. That might mean that I’m not on the cutting edge of new games, but I’m also not dropping US$80 every three or four months on the same set of tripe shooter, mmo clone, or games that never get completed.
I would spend something on a single player, turn based, strategy game set either in misc fantasy land or space … if it was a revamped and upgraded Master of Orion 2. MoO3 was awful, and MoO2 hit that sweet spot of fun that I still think about. What happened to the popularity of the turn based games? I guess I’ll wait for them to come back into favor.
Mike Morhaime – “It’s been gratifying to see the results of all of the work we put into this expansion and to hear all of the positive feedback from players so far.”
I’m pleased, as it reflects how good I think this expansion is. Congratulations. There were initial reports that sales were less than Cata and less than expected, and however true they were they were slanted toward the retail sales of boxes which ignored the digital sales. I purchased a digital version, and think it is the logical way to pay. Sorry stores, you do not have a compelling offering. I guess there is Blizzard spin there too. The 3 month figure will be telling, and the 6 month stats will be definitive. As a player we generally know how it is going in a broad sense anyway by who is online and what they are saying.
I’ve seen some players return to try out the game, but not a massive amount of the really “old” players who left with significant burn-out in place. Some folks have had enough of the game, and feel that the flavour of wow’s treadmill is not for them anymore – fair call. I respect that, just as I respect that a player can return and get a new lease on life too. We have to do what we enjoy above all else.
There are also some bloggers returning too, so we should see an increase in the general wow chatter through the internet. It is exciting.
It’s odd to think that games will cycle in this manner on first impression, but it really is logical. Something is new and entertaining, then it becomes old – the manufacturers make a cal of how long to keep content out there, and how fast they can release it. 1 year with an end boss is too long, and the anti-subs reflected that.