Orc Villains, Best Villains – WoW Passes 10 Million Subscribers Again

IRVINE, Calif.—November 19, 2014—On November 13, millions of Azeroth’s champions enlisted for the war against the Iron Horde with the launch of World of Warcraft®: Warlords of Draenor, the fifth expansion to the world’s #1 subscription-based massively multiplayer online role-playing game.* Blizzard Entertainment today announced that as of the first 24 hours of the expansion’s availability, more than 3.3 million copies had sold-through and the game’s global subscriber base had passed 10 million, with growth across all major regions.

Blizzard Press Release

It looks like orcs might trump pandas (and destroying the old world) when it comes to igniting the WoW player base.

Chieftain Cheat Sheet

Warlords who get it done

I am not sure what it means when you have more than 10 million subscribers, up 2.6 million in the last month and a half, but are talking about moving 3.3 million units of the expansion in the first 24 hours.  Does that 3.3 million number include all the early sales?  Is that an indication of what the US/EU player population is, as the rest of the world was waiting for the expansion to drop? (It launched in South Korea, mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau today according to the press release.)

Subscriber numbers (what constitutes a subscriber is mentioned in the press release) had dropped to 6.8 million in the second quarter of 2014, down further from the slight dip to 7.6 million in the first quarter when the first blush excitement for the expansion had passed, and which was likely only that small because Blizzard said they sold through 1.5 million pre-orders of Warlords of Draenor back then to people interested in getting their insta-90s early.  Then in the third quarter subscriptions bounced back, hitting 7.4 million, with the announcement of a date for the expansion.

Now WoW is back above the 10 million mark, something we have not seen since the post-Cataclysm climb down from the 12 million subscriber high water mark before pandas appeared on the scene. (First quarter of 2012 the subscribers were listed as 10.1 million.)

Now, where will the number be in a month and a half, when we close out the fourth quarter of 2014?

Addendum: Visual aids from Twitter on subscriptions.

I am surprised that WotLK held as many subscribers as it did over its two year run.  I mean, I sat there and ground out everything in the Argent Tournament during that second year, I just didn’t think so many other people did as well.

9 thoughts on “Orc Villains, Best Villains – WoW Passes 10 Million Subscribers Again

  1. Lonegun

    “where will the number be in a month and a half”
    I wonder about that too. Leveling seems to be pretty quick and I am not even trying that hard. Who knows if the end content is enough to keep me around when I get through all the content.


  2. Shintar

    Well, that goes some way towards explaining why they were surprised by just how many people were trying to play! Can’t say I would have expected that much of a jump myself, but I guess the power of nostalgia is not to be underestimated. We’ll see whether it lasts past the launch spike.


  3. Jaxxx

    two lessons here. give every inactive account 7 days free a month before launch and you can count all those as active subs in the expansion press release hype.

    a year without any content and subs will drop.

    I hope they focus on lesson two.


  4. SynCaine

    Puts a nice bow on the whole WotLK/Cata/MoP story in terms of whether the general direction of those expansions was the right one or not, although as mentioned it will be interesting to see how far down the number drops after the free month. Nothing of great interest comes out anytime soon however, so once again WoW finds itself in a bit of a perfect storm scenario.


  5. Wilhelm Arcturus Post author

    @Jaxxx – Well, your first point is covered in the press release. I mentioned that they defined subscriptions in the post for a reason.

    “The above definition excludes all players under free promotional subscriptions, expired or cancelled subscriptions, and expired prepaid cards. ”

    So no, 7 day free accounts aren’t part of that number.

    The second point though, I do hope they have that figured out.


  6. Random Poster

    I liked Wrath and Cata over all themes. Enjoyed Cata’s raids right up until they got hit with a Nerfbat. But eventually got burned out doing too much. Running guild site, GM, raid leader, peace broker. Got to a point that I could no longer just PLAY. So I quit logging in as much which led to guild fracturing which lead to most of my group quitting WoW.

    Bought MoP last year but never actually got to any of the Pandaren stuff because I started a monk I never got past 54 and then quit since none of the people I really wanted to play with got serious about playing again..

    Was going to miss out on this one for a bit(baby on the way in Decemeber, yay) even though I really did want to play, but one of the aforementioned friends bought the expansion for me when he saw me log in the other day and I mentioned I wasn’t going to be getting it yet. He bought it and convinced me to restart our old guild. Haven’t decided what I want to insta 90 yet. Not going to use it on my old main which is at 85 because I DO at least want to see the panda zones briefly.So count me as one of the millions returning. We shall see how this goes heh


  7. Pingback: 7 is (Not) Enough | I HAS PC

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