Is World of Warcraft really dying?
World of Warcraft was originally released November 23, 2004. The game has skyrocketed more than once to hit the Guinness Book of World Records for being the most subscribed to paid-for MMO at one time, a title the game still currently holds. At the end of Wrath of the Lich King, the subscriber base was up at 12 million. Games similar to WoW, such as City of Heroes, shut down when WoW thrived. During Warlords of Draenor, Blizzard announced that they would no longer report how many subscribers they have.
World of Warcraft has inspired fan art and cosplay, and its community continues to be strong. Players make friends that can potentially last for years. However, people have already quit WoW for their own reasons. Some return, while others do not. While some expansions were preferred over others, statistics do show that Mists of Pandaria was the worst-selling expansion. Some players are also unable to upgrade their computers to run the latest expansion due to a lack of funds. This can force players to look elsewhere.
There would be some surefire signs if World of Warcraft was on its final leg, but these signs are not appearing. In order for World of Warcraft to truly die, Blizzard would need to lose the money that is keeping the game alive and well. They might lose 5 million subscribers, but what’s 5 million subscribers to a game that boasts 12 million? As long as they are making more money than it costs to create the game, they will be turning a profit.
It’s this profit that advances World of Warcraft. This means that, as long as they make cash from World of Warcraft accounts—from people buying WoW tokens, mounts, or other titles from Blizzard stores—they will be turning a profit. Towards the end of each expansion, we see numbers dwindle and people stop logging in. It isn’t because they hate the game. It’s because they are bored and have finished that expansion. They move on to something else until the next expansion comes along to go on this endless grind of leveling and raiding all over again.
If this was truly the end of WoW, you would see players not caring enough to criticize. For instance, you see players in the forums complaining and others telling them to quit complaining or quit WoW altogether. But, the way I see it, these players are complaining because they do care. If they didn’t care enough to tell Blizzard what they like or don’t like, then it would mean they didn’t care about World of Warcraft.
It would appear that while every good thing must come to an end, the end is a long way off for World of Warcraft. As long as Blizzard is making money off of WoW, they will keep the game around. What are your thoughts? Do you feel that World of Warcraft is a dying game? Why or why not? Let us know in the comments!