As everyone has known since last week, the quarterly earnings for Blizzard’s World of Warcraft came out and guess what.
Psst…They weren’t very good.
In fact they lost close to 3 million subs, dropping from 10 million subscribers at the start of Warlords of Draenor to 7.1 million, which is around what they were at the peak of Mists of Pandaria.
Now there are quite a few people saying that some of the changes that were made in or introduced in Warlords are the reason for the decline is subscriptions. Such as the introduction of “Garrison Chores”, how much content that is available to them, no flying in Draenor, professions don’t really mean anything anymore are just a few. To be frank yes those are contributing to it all, but I believe the main factor in it is due to the lack of community that is in WoW now a days.
The lack of central dual faction hubs, the removal of the use of major cities, insta-click LFR (which yes does have a lot of good uses) and Garrisons. They have taken the Massive Multiplayer out of the M-M-O and have reduced it to an Online RPG that you don’t really need to interact with people to play anymore. Except for a few guilds such as CTR on Aerie Peak, which is one of, if not the largest WoW community out there, the community is mostly gone in the game. I believe that is the main reason people are leaving.
With content being put out so quickly now in Blizzards new business model, people are doing the things they want to and then leaving. I’ve seen people on twitter say that they will be back as of 6.2 when the new raid tier comes out, but till then they are gone. I do believe that the introduction of the weekend events such as the Timewalking Dungeons and Mythic Tier 5-mans that it may help pull those people back in.
Now the reason I say that community and the lack there of is the major contributing factor in all this, is to take a look at private servers. When I took my break from Retail, I had decided to go and try out some private servers to keep my itch going for World of Warcraft. The server I eventually ended up on was a Wrath server. Now a bunch of the people on that server played there due to lack of funds, but a majority did it for the community. There were events held that you could sign up for. Some that just started randomly by GM’s of the server, or were announced ahead of time that it was taking place.
It can’t just be a content thing, because even after Cataclysm and Mists of Pandaria came out, those same people were coming back and playing with the same people. There friends were there both in Retail and in the Private server.
Now private servers are not the answer, but I think if Blizzard took a look at some of them, and not for the player base that they are taking from them, but for how these servers after so long still have these people. I think they might learn something from them.
That however is just my two cents and ramblings and may add more on this later. That’s all for now.
Rykter signing off.