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Posts with tag sales

Final BlizzCon tickets on sale at 10 a.m. Saturday

We pretty much knew this to be the case, given that it's exactly what happened two weeks ago, but yes, just in case you haven't been paying attention, the second and final round of BlizzCon tickets is going on sale this Saturday, and Neth confirms it'll start at 10a.m. PST again. You'll have to be ready on the ticket page to jump into the queue at the right time, and then hope they don't sell out before you've gotten a chance to grab yours. The good news is that things probably won't break down, but the bad news is that they'll probably go really, really fast, so you'll have to be lucky to get in line before they close the doors.

And if you don't make it to the convention, there's always us: we're planning on covering the heck out of it yet again here at WoW.com, so even if you're not in Anaheim, we'll make you feel like you are. Or if you want to go the streaming video route, we're sure DirecTV will be happy to take your money as well.

So it's not the end of the world if you don't get your purchase done, but there'll no doubt be a lot of disappointed Blizzard fans no matter what. Good luck to everyone -- we'll see you Saturday at 10 a.m. Pacific.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Contests, Making money, BlizzCon

BlizzCon: Arena Junkies ticket giveaway, Tokyopop booth preview

Along with most of the Blizzard fansites, Arena Junkies is also conducting a BlizzCon ticket giveaway, and they want you to design your own Arena. Basically, you come up with an idea, supplement it with whatever drawings or pictures you'd like, and then submit it in their forum thread by June 5th. After that, they'll have the community choose the top three, and each of those winners will be on their way to Anaheim to visit Blizzard's big event. We bet there'll be some awesome ideas coming out of the contest by the end -- Arena players are nothing if not creative.

And in other BlizzCon news, Tokyopop has announced that they'll have a booth at the convention (not a huge surprise -- we'll expect to see most of Blizzard's licensing partners in attendance), and they've got a lot of fun stuff planned: artist Fernando Heinz Furukawa of Warcraft Legends and Starcraft: Ghost Academy will be there and drawing pictures for attendees, and there'll be various art on display and new books to be sold. Plus, they'll have a Blood Elf standup for pictures, and they even leak a little something about fellow exhibitor BradyGames: this year they'll be hosting a convention-wide "fishing quest." Sounds like fun.

If you don't have tickets yet, you have one more chance: they go on sale this Sunday, May 31st. Seriously, don't show up until then. (Ed: Schramm, stop trying to keep people out of your ticket line! The second round of ticket sales is this Saturday, May 30th. Good luck to everyone except Schramm.)

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Events, Fan stuff, BlizzCon, Comics

BlizzCon tickets: how it went, and what's next

Yes, if you were around on Saturday, you know that the first round of BlizzCon tickets sold out, and sold out fast. Tickets went on sale right around 10am PST (which was 1pm EST), and sold out just about 28 minutes later. If the queue numbers are trustworthy, over 21,000 people (we've heard as high as 25,000 at a time) logged in to buy tickets that day, and from unconfirmed reports around the web, it seems like about 5,000 to 8,000 tickets were sold: most people who got in line around number 5,000 were able to pick a ticket up, and that was a few minutes in already. Some of those people are already selling tickets on eBay as well.

We believe (though aren't sure) that they'll be selling more than 15,000 tickets this year, since that's what they sold last year and they're using even more of the convention space. If that's true, then Blizzard probably went through only about half of the tickets, and will sell the rest during the second session on the 30th. But that's probably not much of a consolation -- given the frenzy around this last Saturday, there'll probably be more people trying for tickets, and given the prices on eBay, possibly more scalpers clogging up the queue. We'll see.

Update: Lots of people point out, rightly so, that I missed something in my guesstimates of how many tickets were sold: you could purchase up to five. My personal guess is that the majority of people bought only one or two, but even if you go with three as the average, 5,000-8,000 people in the queue is actually 15,000-24,000 tickets. Blizzard probably did sell the majority of tickets on Saturday then, not just half. So the process on May 30th will presumably go even faster.

BlizzCon 2009 is coming up on August 21st and 22nd! We've got all the latest news and information. At BlizzCon you can play the latest games, meet your guildmates, and ask the developers your questions. Plus, there's some great looking costumes.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Events, Fan stuff, Blizzard, BlizzCon

Wrath of the Lich King falls off the top sales spot (for now)


It only took four months, but a new title has knocked Wrath of the Lich King off the top of the PC sales charts, according to industry trackers NPD. Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II, the much-awaited RTS title featuring that other fantasy universe with "war" in the title, has taken the top spot, knocking Wrath down to number two (and the original version of WoW and the Battle Chest hold their spots around six and seven).

We suppose it had to happen at some point -- with PTR interest kicking in this past week, and the game having sold so many copies already, there had to be a point where something else jumped up above Wrath. But don't count the award winning expansion out of the number one spot yet. While Dawn of War II is getting reviewed very favorably, this little bump is likely due to an audience of fans who wanted to get the sequel on day one. Once first-week sales for that game level off, it's entirely likely that we'll see WotLK back up on top. Not that Blizzard needs any more money, of course. But it is good to be the (Lich) King.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items, Expansions, Making money

The state of the Azerothian economy

Thermalnoise over on the WoW LJ thought of a great poll, and the results are interesting. He asked readers there what the average amount of gold they had on their characters was, and I thought the amounts were relatively high: between 2,000 and 10,000g for about 40% of those polled. The other big chunk is between 200 and 2,000g (a little under 30% of respondents), which is where I'd expect most of the player base to be, but no: apparently Blizzard's bigger rewards in Wrath of the Lich King (not to mention the higher gold sinks, requiring us to try and raise more gold if we want to fly around or ride a mammoth) have made us richer as a whole.

Thermalnoise also asked how much your savings of gold fluctuates, and for most people it apparently stays pretty much the same, or generally increases (probably as they run professions, do quests, or sell off drops and pay repairs). I'd imagine Blizzard is keeping a pretty close eye on just how our gold moves around, and that "steadily increase" is what they'd want all of our money to do, just to keep the game's economy moving around.

In fact, though I'm probably repeating myself here, it'd be nice to have them give us some insight on just what's happening with the ingame economy. We've gotten a few hints at what sells and doesn't on the realms, but it would be interesting to see some official numbers about the average amount of money that players have and keep at the various levels of the game. and exactly where it all goes when we spend it.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Economy, Leveling, Making money, Wrath of the Lich King

Steelseries partnering with Best Buy, credits WoW for growth

We've heard before about World of Warcraft strutting up the PC gaming market before, but could this game also be holding up the PC game accessories market? Seems that way for Steelseries -- they're the makers of the WoW mouse that we've mentioned (the one that might not be quite kosher with Blizzard's Terms of Service, use with caution). They've just recently inked a deal with Best Buy to carry some of their products (including the WoW mouse), and World of Warcraft played so much of a part in the deal that CEO Bruce Hawver credited Blizzard's MMO with creating his "high-quality gamers": "The way I used to pick up the phone after school, now, kids log into World of Warcraft and chat... Online gaming might cost $14 to $18 a month – less than a single movie visit for two people."

It does follow -- if WoW is one of the only reasons left for people to spend money on PC games, it does seem that it would be one of the only reasons for them to spend money on gaming accessories. High-end mice and keyboards use to be the domain of the FPS player -- guys like Fata1ity pimped their own lines and all the mice bragged about their resolution and ease of use. But the PC market has changed, and MMOs are the game of the day now -- everything is about squeezing function into as many buttons as possible and reaching this 11 million player group roaming around Azeroth. If Steelseries and other accessory manufacturers want to sell their products, they've got to try and sell them to us.

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Add-Ons, Hardware

WoW still on store shelves in Australia

Our good friend Tateru Nino (who is in fact an Aussie herself) has a followup over at Massively about the report that World of Warcraft was no longer legally available in Oz earlier this week. The issue isn't in the rules -- those are the same: unclassified games like World of Warcraft are held to the same rules as banned games -- but in the lack of enforcement. Since the issue has gone public, stores are continuing to sell the game (though some have removed larger sale displays of the games), and law enforcement has made no moves to try and get the games off of store shelves.

The real problem here, of course, isn't that Australia wants to ban these games, but that they're falling through the cracks of what seems to be an extremely lax rating system. There's really no rating assigned to these games, so according to the rules, they can't be sold. But the rules make no sense in this case: no one, as far as we've heard, actually wants to ban these games in the country, and no one cares whether they're being sold on store shelves or not.

Still, Massively does expect action, eventually, even if it's an apparently much-needed rejiggering of the ratings system to include these "unrated" games. Bottom line right now is that if you want to buy or sell World of Warcraft in Australia, no one's stopping you from doing so.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Economy, Expansions, Making money, Wrath of the Lich King

Wrath tops the PC sales charts for November

Surprised? You probably shouldn't be -- NPD has released the top sales list for November, and our favorite game is sitting right on top. In fact, the most interesting thing about the list is what's not on it: games. Wrath is at number one, followed up by such great titles like Office 2007 and Trend Micro Anti-virus. The collector's edition of Wrath comes in at number four, and after that it's all utilities except Call of Duty: World at War at number six and Spore at number 10.

That's a sad month for PC gaming, especially during a time when sales are supposed to be at their highest. Blizzard's leading the charge (and they're not leaving PC anytime soon), but they seem to be pretty much the only PC studio able to bring it home this year.

Videogame sales in general are doing just great: even in a bad economy, console companies -- both developers and retailers -- are seeing nice growth. But those saying PC gaming is dead will only have to point to November's sales for proof. Maybe in 2009 we can get a couple more titles quality enough to give World of Warcraft a run for its money.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items, Making money, Wrath of the Lich King

Northrend's Gross Domestic Product: 719 million gold

Our friend The WoW Economist started a little project the other day: he added up, according to the top items lists, all of the products sold from Northrend across the servers, and then multiplied each by what he calls a "median" price (though exactly how that's reached, we're not sure), and landed on a huge amount of gold: 719,918,239.7. Obviously I'm not a WoW Economist (I'm not even that good at math), but that sounds to me like Northrend's gross domestic product: players are creating an economy of 719 million gold in Northrend from week to week.

Unfortunately, that number alone doesn't tell us much, except that there's a lot of gold moving around in Northrend (it would be interesting to compare this to, say, Azeroth or Outland's equivalent, though the more useful numbers would probably be Outland before the new expansion hit, when everyone was still farming and selling items from there). And it will be interesting to see this tracked in the future: the real GDP is usually used as an indicator of both standard of living and a country's economic health, and while there are drawbacks to using that number to gauge both of those qualities, it's probably fair to say the economy in Northrend is booming. Maybe tracking this in the future will let us see how new content patches or item or even class updates can affect what the economy does there.

Very interesting. EVE Online's creators, CCP, have actually hired an economist to help run their ingame economy, and while WoW's isn't generally seen as quite that complicated, there are still plenty of big numbers to play around with..

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Economy, Making money, Wrath of the Lich King

WotLK breaks internal records at EB Games


One of our secret correspondents inside an EB Games store forwarded us this picture of an internal email sent out to the videogame retail company, saying that not only was the week of WotLK's launch the biggest sales week of the year, but it was the biggest week ever outside of last year's Christmas sales, and the biggest launch the chain has ever had. Additionally, at EB Games, Wrath was the highest presale ever, the highest single-format (which means PC/Mac only) week one sales (in just two days), and the highest day one sales of any game ever, multiformat or otherwise.

Pretty incredible. EB Games isn't a small company by any means, and while we knew Wrath was big, it looks like Blizzard's second WoW expansion smashed pretty much every sequel it could in the chain, even toppling some of the console gaming records. Anyone that claimed World of Warcraft had peaked with Burning Crusade should be looking pretty foolish at this point.

We'll have to see where Blizzard goes from here -- there's no doubt that one reason Wrath was so popular out of the gate was that it returned to the "core" of Warcraft III: the story of Arthas and the Scourge. Can Blizzard replicate that with another expansion, no matter what the setting?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King

Wrath sells 2.8 million in the first 24 hours

We knew it was going to be a lot, but I think the game outsold even our expectations: Blizzard has announced that the game's second expansion, Wrath of the Lich King, sold 2.8 million copies worldwide in the first 24 hours, and undoubtedly many more in the weekend after that (we're expecting an announcement later this month around five million in the first 30 days). That makes the game the fastest selling PC game of all time, and by far the fastest-selling expansion of all time (remember that this isn't even a complete game that's flying off the shelves). The previous record, of course, was set by the Burning Crusade, which sold 2.4 million copies during launch.

Pretty huge, but when you consider that the game has 11 million subscribers around the world, those numbers are just about right. Looks like Morhaime is on to something -- as long as they have players ready to buy the game in numbers like this, Blizzard will undoubtedly release expansions as long as they can.

Thanks, Doug!

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Economy, Making money, Wrath of the Lich King

Guessing at early sales numbers for Wrath

Unfortunately, as of this writing, Blizzard hasn't yet released actual numbers for Wrath sales last week (we were expecting around two million, but we'll see what they say eventually). But that won't stop us from guessing -- the list of top ten games sold last week in the UK is out, and Wrath... is number two.

That's right -- Activision's own Call of Duty: World at War beat out Wrath for the number one spot, but before you start worrying whether WoW has lost its charm, don't: not only was Wrath an expansion pack (expansion packs obviously don't sell as well as standalone games, sequels or otherwise), but the Call of Duty game has already outsold its prequel, the extremely successful Call of Duty 4, by a 2:1 ratio. Unfortunately, we don't have numbers yet, but all indications are that, in the UK alone, Wrath did almost as well as a game that outsold last year's best selling game. That all make sense?

If not, hear this: Blizzard made a lot of money last week, and pretty soon we'll hear how much. Even more amazing, Activision Blizzard, who owns Guitar Hero, Call of Duty, and World of Warcraft, accounted for a full 25% of all UK game sales last week. The merger has already paid off.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Blizzard, Making money, Wrath of the Lich King

Gamestop makes another funny

Whoever writes the descriptions for Gamestop and EB Games is quite the joker -- we already reported on their hidden little note for the early preview, but now that we're getting closer and closer to the Wrath of the Lich King release, they've posted another funny on the preview page.

This time, they're making fun of the starting zones -- apparently the "Borean Tundra" is where the Packers play (chuckle), and a "Howling Fjord" is what you get when the windows of your Tauren Taurus are cracked open (guffaw). Cute. Just don't quit that day job of writing descriptions for Gamestop's sales pages.

Thanks, djtyrant!

Filed under: Fan stuff, Expansions, Humor, Wrath of the Lich King

Analyst: Wrath will sell five million copies

Here's our first analysis of Wrath sales (actually second, if you count Mike Morhaime's take on the subject): someone thinks it's going to sell big. Gamasutra reports that Mike Hickey of Janco Partners is predicting sales of five million copies for Wrath's first month in stores, which would basically make it the most popular expansion pack of all time. Burning Crusade, a pack that just barely beat out The Sims, sold 2.4 million copies in the first 24 hours, and 3.5 million within the first month, and so Hickey is looking at a little less than double that for the Northrend expansion.

Huge numbers indeed, and yet they don't seem that surprising -- WoW's population has grown since Burning Crusade was released for sure, and while pretty much everyone agrees that not all players will be buying the expansion right away (our own informal poll has about 13% of our readers waiting, not to mention all of the players in other markets around the world), but if even 1/4 of WoW's 11 million players decide to pick up the game on launch, we're still looking at 2.75 million copies, more than BC.

No matter what, Blizzard will make a lot of money, and very likely break all records anyway next week. Wrath of the Lich King will be huge.

[via BigDownload]

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Expansions, Making money, Wrath of the Lich King

Noncombat pets bought before the patch not selling on the AH

Reader Dave sent word of another bug in the game after the latest patch (thanks!) that might cost players some money. A player was trying to sell his Hyacinth pet on the Auction House (there's a small craze on vanity pets right now, thanks to the achievements) when he ran into a problem -- an error told him that you couldn't AH "an item with used charges." Except that he hadn't used the pet yet -- it wasn't in his pets screen. But Blues have confirmed that with pets purchased or obtained but not used before the patch, this can happen -- the pet will be unsellable.

Darkmoon Faire cards are apparently having the same issue, but as you might expect, it's unlikely that Blizzard will take steps to fix this, both because all we're talking about here is AH selling (not a critical game mechanic), and because this problem doesn't seem to be affecting new pets and cards, only cards that were purchased and owned before the patch. But maybe they will hotfix it, we'll just have to wait and see.

Anyone that horded pets to sell on the AH could be in trouble, though -- if you've got a significant amount of gold stored up in pets you were intending to sell, you might be out ot luck.

Filed under: Patches, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Bugs, Virtual selves, Blizzard, The Burning Crusade, Making money

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