WoW Subscriptions Drop Below 10 Million. Again.

Headline aside, it’s far from all bad news for Activision. Yes, the elephant in the subscription-based MMOG room has floundered a bit, with a subscription rate of only 9.6 million by the end of Q4 2012. That’s down 4% from World of Warcraft’s Q3 2012 return to the 10 million mark. Still a dominating number in the (dwindling) subgenre of subscriptionn-based titles.

What’s the good news? Activision had no problem making an incredible amount of money even though WoW had a hiccup during the period. We’re talking billions. Yeah, with a B. The company pulled in an impressive $1.77 billion in revenue for Q4 2012. An increase of nearly 26% over Q4 2011’s $1.41 billion.

The added cashflow was largely due to the Skylanders product, the unstoppable force that is the Call of Duty brand and the combined PC power of Diablo III and World of Warcraft. CoD and Skylanders helped make Activision Blizzard the #1 console and handheld publisher in the West.

MMO gamers know that holding the crown of the largest subscription MMOG is becoming easier and easier as more and more companies opt to launch or change their business model to the F2P model. The arguement continues on if this is the future of the genre or a result of WoW’s dominance.

What are your thoughts?

1 Comment

  1. I think it’s a little of both, more WoW’s dominance than the changing market – when a established MMO exists as a sub-based game like WoW, the other sub-based MMO’s have difficulty “comparing” themselves to WoW; they don’t have enough to attract subscribers to their game – WoW “does a better job”.

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