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2-09-2012 @ 4:40PM
That contract racket they rolled out during the peak of Blizzcon's fervor certainly kept that number from going higher.
2-09-2012 @ 5:35PM
Even though you've been downrated into oblivion, I concur that your analysis is at least partially right. The free copy of D3 and MoP beta opt-in, plus the attractive pricing of the annual pass, was certainly a deterrent to the subscription decline.That being said, we're probably not giving enough credit to the effect that the Annual Pass had; sub numbers may have been lower had it not been for this because the incentive to sign up was incredibly attractive, and placed at the right time so that consumers didn't have to think about the upcoming MMOs; the ultimate 'no-brainer' purchase for any WoW fan. It was a perfectly delivered blow timed so that it had maximum financial impact. The interesting call will be next year's investor call in February, when the majority of the Annual Pass subscribers will be forced with the decision of whether to renew or not.The Annual Pass was a brilliant strategic move that not only helped staunch the decline, but may very well put WoW in the positive sub loss/gain numbers on the next call.
2-09-2012 @ 6:03PM
Besides the 1M Annual Pass players, keep in mind that:- WoW released in Brazil. Demand was strong enough Blizzard had to add 5 realms, thanks in part to the $8 subscription rate here.- I'm guessing 1M Annual Pass players means something between 500K and 1M less D3 sales, since those players already received the game for free. Also, 1M players that might potentially purchase that angel horse got it for free. While I think the Annual Pass might have had a positive result for Blizzard - and should have an even larger result in the next year, as players are not able to unsubscribe - it was not without costs.- TOR released December 20. There was not enough time for most players that might leave WoW for TOR to cancel their subscriptions, and for those subscriptions to run out, before December 31. We will need to wait for Q1 2012 to actually see the effect TOR had on WoW.
2-09-2012 @ 6:20PM
@DarkwalkerExcellent points! I completely forgot the Brazil launch. As for the D3 copies, you're absolutely right. They'll lose potential revenue from the Annual Pass free copies, but they more than make up for it with the sub fees from an entire year. Great post!
2-09-2012 @ 6:41PM
I would never have bought that stupid horse, or D3. I only wanted MOP Beta. Of course I'll try D3, snce it's free. Maybe I'll like it. Who knows. Sneaky Blizz, trying to hook me into another franchise...
2-09-2012 @ 7:37PM
For all the ones who hang out on forums and bash Blizz endlessly -No one has ever forced you to play the game. Calling a business 'greedy' or prophesying the end of WoW only shows the majority of us how much of a miserable and petty person you are.If I get tired of a game, I just stop playing. If I think the devs of a game listens for feedback, I give it. One thing I do not do is wish ill will on people.WoW is no where near going away. Because most of us like to play it. Hell I still play TFC with friends.. 14 years later.
2-10-2012 @ 1:45AM
Expect sub numbers to go higher when MoP launches. Also remember that subs aren't just US and EU. MoP will be widely popular in Asia and add a lot of new and returning subs. In Asia they are also behind our schedule in the US and EU so expect a fall before a rise when they get to the doldrums of cleared endgame and waiting for new xpac to come out.I would be curious to know what the subs are for just the US and EU and what that decline was.
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