Category Archives: World of Warcraft

WoW Tokens – PLEX with Price Supports

Well, they went for it.  I was predicting against it due to the frenzy of bitterness left over from the Diablo III real money auction house fiasco, but it looks like there will be a PLEX-like item from Blizzard, as was previously brought up, that people can buy for real world money and then convert into in-game gold in World of Warcraft.

Current prices are around 800 million ISK in Jita

Current prices are ~800 million ISK in Jita

Called WoW Tokens, Blizzard will join the other games that have followed EVE Online and its PLEX model to help combat/sate the pressure some players feel is on them to buy the in-game currency in order to get what they want out of the game.

The WoW Token highway has no exit

The WoW Token highway has no exit

While Blizzard is not the first to take their cue from CCP on this front, though they do appear to be one of the few, aside from SOE, to avoid a cute acronym.  And even Krono (as in “Chrono” as in “Time”) strikes me as a bit cute.  But for WoW it is just a token.

Past versions of PLEX from other companies include:

  • KronoEverQuest & EverQuest II and maybe other titles.
  • CREDDWildStar
  • GRACEAnarchy Online
  • DUELDarkfall
  • REX – Rift
  • APEX – ArcheAge

Avoiding a cuteness however is not the only thing that sets Blizzard apart on the PLEX-like front.

Process diagram

Process diagram

First off, the WoW Tokens are good for one sale and one sale only in-game.  You cannot buy one from another player, then hang onto it until the market price goes up in order to resell. This avoids speculation and investment buyers that have been driving up the price of PLEX in EVE now and again.

Then there is the gold you get for your WoW Token.  As World of Warcraft has over 500 servers outside of China the last time I looked, the market would seem to be fractured in the extreme.  Yes, the more recent server pairings have reduced the effective number of servers by joining them in every way short of a full-on merger, there are still a lot of servers out there.

The Blizzard plan appears to be to join WoW Token sales into unified markets based on regions.  These regions will be:

  • Americas, Australia, and New Zealand
  • Europe
  • Taiwan
  • Korea
  • China

This should prevent the low population server problem, like Daybreak has with their Krono, where prices can vary wildly because of demand on a given server.

Within these markets, you will get a price quote up front when you list your WoW Token for sale.  I find this to be the most interesting bit, as within this special marketplace, it really looks like Blizzard wants to be able to inject gold into transactions to keep the market stable.

Blizzard is setting up a region-wide, cross server, cross faction market, with no fees, promising a specific amount of gold up front, and not necessarily matching up buyers and sellers directly the way it works in the auction house, all with an eye towards stopping illicit RMT.  It does not seem like very much of a stretch for Blizzard to step in now and again and complete outstanding orders now and again when the buy and sell prices get out of alignment.

That makes complete sense if you view this as Blizzard attempting to apply a topical antibiotic to the festering sore that is illicit RMT.  For this service to have any impact, it needs to feel like a viable alternative to the gold sellers.  So I suspect that, when this service goes live, you may end up buying a bit of your gold directly from Blizzard.  I suspect somebody diligent like Gevlon will watch this market and will be able to “prove” at some point that Blizz is kicking in some gold now and again.

All that is left is to set the price of a WoW Token.  Blizzard has left that in the TBD file, but the price has to be more than $14.99 to cover the additional overhead that this program will entail, but I doubt the price can exceed $19.99 per token if Blizzard wants it to succeed.

And then we will have to see what the in-game market will bear.  A quick Google search shows gold sellers going down to fifty cents per 1,000 gold.  Now Blizzard doesn’t have to match that price, since they offer a safe and legitimate method of buying WoW gold, but they can’t be off by a huge factor either.  So I couldn’t see a WoW Token for selling for less than 30K gold given a high estimate price of $19.99 per token.

Which doesn’t seem that bad I guess.  Blizz might not even have to get into the price support business to aggressively at that level of pricing.  But how that will play out in the longer term will be interesting to watch.

Anyway, you can read the sum of all knowledge on the topic over at Blizzard’s site.

And, of course, this being a WoW related topic, lots others have opinions.  It is big enough news that my wife caught it on a Yahoo headline.  A few posts from the local blogesphere you might care to peruse:

February in Review

The Site

I did have my first failure of my current Rube Goldberg MMO blogesphere feed this month when somebody decided that Pinboard, a key player in the chain of events that moves things from my Feedly feed to the sidebar of this blog, was picked to receive a DDoS attack for a couple of days.

FeedDownFortunately things came back together in a couple of days, but for a while there the side bar was back to depending solely on the VirginWorlds feed for links to posts on other blogs.

And then VirginWorlds feed started to have some problems.  I think there is an RSS problem in one of the blogs on Brent’s list, which is causing only a few sites to get picked up.  Plus Massively is no longer updating, long a staple of his feed.  And then another site on his list became a spam site and some odd things started showing up in the feed, so I took it off the side bar and dropped Brent a note.  We’ll see how that plays out.

One Year Ago

A lot of people got their panties in a twist about Steam tags.  It was the literal end of civilization as we knew it… for about 30 minutes.

EA handed over the running of Camelot Unchained and Ultima Online to Broadsword.

I spent some time with Warcraft III attempting to discover the pre-history of WoW.

There was Diablo III version 2.0, and the changes looked promising.

On the World of Warcraft front, we were still talking about Warlords of Draenor.  Pre-orders were announced an there was a rumor that the expansion would cost $60, which seemed a bit steep.  Also, insta-90s looked to be coming as a cash shop item.  Would all of that stem the tide on subscription decline?

Meanwhile, I finished the last of the LFR raids, witnessing the downfall of Garrosh Hellscream.  For all of the complaints about LFR, I enjoyed my raid tourism.  The instance group did Grim Batol, then made the jump to Pandaria before returning with slightly better equipment for Heroic Deadmines.

I was wondering why PvP seemed to be a requirement for all MMOs.

I got into The Edler Scrolls Online beta and declared it Skyrim-like enough for me, then never played it again.

Brad McQuaid’s Pantheon: Further Falling of the Fallen Kickstarter campaign was winding down, doomed to failure.  There was talk about what would happen nextPlan B anybody?

I ran another EVE Online screen shot contest to give away some items from the Second Decade Collector’s Edition which I scored for free… after having bought it for myself.  And then there was the monument and drone assist and campaign medals and the repercussions of B-R5RB to talk about.

And I wondered what was going to happen with people being given free reign in Landmark.

Five Years Ago

We learned SynCaine’s dirty secret.

I was invited to go play in the beta for the web based Crown of Byzantus.  It didn’t really stick with me, though I wrote about it a couple of times.

There was another press release or some such for a Wheel of Time MMO.  My call: It isn’t going to happen.

Ten Ton Hammer made a list of their Top Ten PvP MMOs, and there was some chagrin that Ultima Online didn’t make the cut.

For reasons I cannot recall, Conner at MMO Fallout started looking into how MMO companies ranked over at the Better Business Bureau.

There was an announcement for a new game… World of Tanks!

In World of Warcraft, the instance group got as far as Zul’Farrak in our horde adventures, though we were still forgetting we could use the Dungeon Finder.  Otherwise we were running around doing holiday events and the like.

Oh, the Dungeon Finder.  My first runs with that were… not so good.  I seemed to run into some cliche bad groups.

Meanwhile, WoW decided to emulate WebKinz and start selling stuffed animals that had codes for in-game versions.  They are still around.  My daughter wants the Windrider Cub.

The Azeroth Advisor went buh-bye.  Thanks 38 Studios!  I saved all the email tips they sent me, however they are all pretty much worthless post-Cataclysm.

Finally, there was Star Trek Online.  The head start ended, The game went full-live, I was fiddling with my super special pre-order collector’s edition junk, and I gave out some codes in a caption contest.  There was even some new content.  But by month’s end, STO faded for me.

New Linking Blogs

The following blogs have linked this site in their blogrolls, for which they have my thanks.

Please take a moment to visit them in return.

Most Viewed Posts in February

  1. WoW Insider Reborn as Blizzard Watch
  2. The Mighty Insta-90 Question – Which Class to Boost?
  3. The End of Sony Online Entertainment, the Coming of Daybreak
  4. On Departures from Our Corner of the Web
  5. Shot at Daybreak – First Casualties of the Acquisition
  6. A Warning to My Fellow Dummies
  7. Two Paths Forward – Blizzard Watch and Massively Overpowered
  8. Pet Battling Across Azeroth
  9. SWTOR Returning to that Fourth Pillar
  10. Too Late for Torchlight II?
  11. Quote of the Day – Skepticism Blooms
  12. Crowfall Kickstarter Commences

Search Terms of the Month

pirating star wars galaxies for emu
[You mean, for the pirate server?]

eq2 100% weight reduction bags
[I’m pretty sure weight is no longer a thing in EQII]

wow epic dungeon group
[Wow, have you come to the wrong place]

fastest way to get sky golem mount
[The auction house]

EVE Online

I started off somewhat active in New Eden.  There was a reavers operation going on in Period Basis, and those are always good for me because you can drop in at just about any hour of the day and find something going on.  Granted, “something” generally means shooting a structure, but that something is better than nothing.  And I can always tab out and do pet battles in WoW if there is no opposition.  But then that op wrapped up and there hasn’t been much else going on that I have been able to get to.

World of Warcraft

There are days when I feel like I am stuck in my garrison.  With five garrisons running, there are evenings when my play time is just about exhausted when I have finally done every little thing in every garrison and whatever daily quest and the daily pet battles and checking the auction house.

Coming Up

I actually have a couple of outstanding posts I haven’t gotten to yet.  That is “outstanding” as in “on my list of things to do” and not a measure of their quality.  The instance group went and ran the Iron Docks… like four times.  I just haven’t gotten around to putting that post together.

I also have a list of things to write about when it comes to WoW Patch 6.1.

There is another EVE Online expansion coming along, because every five weeks is the way they roll.

A couple of Kickstarter campaigns will be wrapping up, so there will be some dollar totals to write about.  And I am sure there will be something new on Daybreak front to talk about.

I am also waiting for Raptr to send out their 2014 game play summaries, so I can see where I wasted my time last year.  It is, frankly, one of the few reasons I still run Raptr.

Otherwise it will be March and something about a salt marsh harvest mouse.  There was so much going on in February, maybe things will just take it easy in March.

Notes from the Field in Azeroth

Unlike some people, I usually prefer to keep my posts on a single topic.  But some days I have a couple of topics that don’t feel like they rank a post on their own, so they have to share.  So some tidbits about World of Warcraft.

Pet Battles to Level Cap!

So in about three weeks of focusing on pet battles with a level 95 character, I now have another level 100 character.

Level 100 with a victory

Level 100 with a victory

The pity is that in that fly through he barely accumulated any garrison resources, so he’ll be stuck doing that for a while to upgrade his garrison.

Of course, having gone on and on about pet battles for a week and having shown it to be a viable leveling strategy, I have gotten some questions in the guild about how to get into pet battles.  Everybody else seems to have level 1 pets, which just gets the “How do I get to Carnegie Hall?” response out of me.

However, it looks like Patch 6.1 is going to change that.  After that hits, level 100 characters who have upgraded their garrison to tier 3 will get an item in the mail that will boost a pet to level 25.  Insta-levels again.

My daughter was especially keen on that.  I told her she had best use it on the Molten Corgi or the Terrible Turnip, as both have skills akin to the Pokemon False Swipe attack, which will never reduce your foe below 1 hit point.  I favor the Terrible Turnip, since the Molten Corgi’s skill has a four turn cool-down on it.  But if you only have one, you go with what you’ve got.

Patch 6.1 is Nearly Here!

Speaking of Patch 6.1, it will be arriving on Tuesday the 24th.  Blizzard announced that the other day and the launcher has started pre-downloading the data.

There are a lot of new and interesting things coming with the patch.   I am not sure Twitter integration is a huge thrill… oh how we suffered when Rift launched and everybody linked their accounts to Twitter and bombarded the world with every little achievement… but I’ll still hook it up to my “gonna spam you” Twitter account.

The heirloom consolidation though, that does interest me quite a bit, if only because I think I have totally lost track of all the heirlooms I have collected over the last few years.  I know that there are some heirlooms from Argent Tournament that are socked away somewhere.  I like that I will be able to check out a copy of an item on as many characters as I need.  I may soon have an army of alts I never play so equipped!

Now they just need a tabard organizer.

Eye on the Horde

I have been watching my daughter play her main character, which is a Horde Pandaran monk, and that has given me a desire to see the Horde side of the story in Draenor… and Pandaria… and Northrend… and, honestly, Outland.  I have a collection of horde characters, but the highest level is in the low 60s.

Anyway, while I am in no way done with my alliance characters yet, doing the Horde tour is on my list of things to do again.  That sounds like another project to run through when the inevitable group hiatus comes during the summer.  But the first question I considered was which character.  The heirloom update will make equipping him easy.  If I don’t have the right heirlooms now, I will once a few more Darkmoon Faires roll by.

I do want a character in a guild, if only for the perks.  That sort of lets out most of my Horde characters.  Our guild on Lightninghoof was stolen from us.  No more “friend of a friend of a friend” invites to our group guilds any more.  All our characters now have these blank tabards.  On Garona, our temp guild moved servers, while on Thrall I do not think we ever got around to forming one.

Anyway, my eyes landed on the Orc hunter I still have on Eldre’Thalas.  I have had him for a while.

Mounted up on his new wolf mount!

Mounted up on his then new wolf mount!

He is level 42, he hit level 40 back in October of 2007, and he still has a quiver equipped and it still has arrows in it for his crossbow.  I almost hate to sell those.  But he’ll have a set of heirloom gear to replace that.  I also wonder if I should change his profession.  He has the whole leatherworker/skinner thing going on right now.  That will allow him to make himself some armor.  But I almost want to switch him to Engineer right away so he can make his own item level 630 gun in Draenor.  Plan for the future!  We’ll see about that.

But the best thing he has is ownership of a Horde guild dating back to 2006, back when you needed an annoying amount of signatures in order to create one.

Tumult the Guild

Tumult the Guild

He has to earn rep with the guild, but at least he doesn’t have to level it up in order to get the perks.  So perhaps, come the summer, I will return to my old Orc hunter.

My WoW Addon Overview

Back when I first really got into World of Warcraft, I dove into the who addon thing pretty heavily.  The UI at the time was even less flexible than it is now (though I am sure that isn’t saying much for some) and there were so many options and things to be improved and so on.  I filled my plate to overflowing at the addon smorgasbord.  I even had addons for things like WoW Census to help them get play counts.  You can go hog wild with addons and end up with a very different looking version of the game.

Not the stock UI

Hey, I know where that is!

(screen shot of the Ultimate Raid & Leveling UI pack)

And then the reality of addons began to hit.  Some of them were buggy or leaked memory or conflicted with other addons.  There was the usual nightmare of patch day when everybody needed to update their addons, whether or not they broke due to some change.  Finally, long term support for addons has always been a bit dodgy.   Somebody who was enthusiastic addon developer one day was likely just to walk away from their projects the moment they stopped playing WoW.

Addons became a pain, which wasn’t helped when Blizzard made it clear that you couldn’t charge for addons or solicit donations for them in-game.

Around the time of that big quest tracker addon I changed my tune on the whole addon thing.  I was going to be an addon minimalist.  By that point Blizzard had improved the game enough, often by incorporating the functionality of some popular addons directly into the game (to the annoyance of some) that I did not feel like I needed as many addons.

I cut my addon count down to the bare minimum.  I think at one point I only ran Auctioneer, because knowing the market value of things is too useful, and one damage meter or another, just to keep myself aware of how I was doing.  In addition, I limited the potential pool of addons to those supported by Curse, since they make updating easy.

Over the years since then, my addon count has crept up slowly.  I have added and remove some, but the really useful ones persist.  So my count as of today is 8 addons.  They are:

Auctioneer – This is my market tracking addon of choice, and probably my one absolutely essential addon.  There are other options in this category, but I have stuck with this one out of habit as much as anything else.

GTFO – I picked this up when I did the LFR’s in Pandaria to ensure that I wouldn’t be “that guy” standing in the fire or what not.  It basically plays audio alerts when you are standing in the fire, ooze, or other zone of impact so you know to get out.  Very helpful as a melee DPS player where your view of the world is often restricted when standing next to a giant boss.  Probably less necessary when ranged, but still nice.  Several people in our weekly group run this, including Earl who runs the sound through his speakers and Skype through his headset, so I can hear when he is standing in the fire during a fight.

Master Plan – Makes garrison missions more manageable, lets you assign the optimum followers on your team to a given mission, lets you complete all outstanding missions with a single click.  Not absolutely indispensable, but I would want to try and run five garrisons without it.

PetBattle Teams – Suggested by several people and mentioned in my post last week about pet battles, this really helps to overcome the limitations of the pet battle interface.  I am not sure I could really be serious about pet battles in any way without running this addon.

Pet Tracker – I may have mentioned this in passing last week as well, this fills addon in a few more of the blanks when it comes to pet battles.  It lets me know in a battle if any of the pets I am facing would be an upgrade over what I have already caught, including if I do not yet have a given pet.  It also gives a readout in each zone of available pets, which ones I have left to catch, the quality break down of those pets in my collection, and where any uncaught pets might be found in the zone.  This is all stuff I could look up on the web, so not indispensable, but still very nice to have.

My Rare Finder – Also just Rare Finder, I picked this one up one night when we were out hunting rares as a group.  It just puts them on your map so you know where to look for them.  Great if you are obsessing about rares, but I feel like I could remove this one.

Recount – What looks to be the most popular damage meter on Curse.  Certainly, at 64 million downloads, a lot of people have tried it.  Mostly used to just see how I am doing.  I never throw numbers around these days.

Tiffy’s Junk Seller – This isn’t even up on Curse anymore, so I might need a replacement some day.  This was somebody’s addon test project, and it basically sells all of the gray quality items in your bags when you open up the vendor interface, listing out what it sold and how much it totaled up to in the chat window.  Almost essential in WoW, where bag space is at a premium on any character I play regularly.

And that is my list.  It is probably a very short list compared to some, and no doubt extravagant compared to others.  I have had other addons around at times.  I used to run Gatherer until Warlords of Draenor put all my gathering needs in my garrisons.  When I play as a healer I run Healium, though I haven’t done the healing thing for a while.  I also was running an addon that would show the X,Y coordinates of positions on the map, but it broke with 6.0 and I haven’t really needed it in Draenor, so I haven’t bothered replacing it.

What is your view on addons?  The minimalist approach like mine, where I am always trying to pare them down?  Do you go full bore in changing things up?  Or do you ignore them altogether?

Pet Battle Enthusiasm Unleashed

I often find that there is a threshold of knowledge that, once passed, really enables me to get into something.  One moment I am tentative and uncertain.  Then I hit that critical mass of information and suddenly everything accelerates and I feel like I am, for lack of a better phrase, “really into” whatever that is.

That can be quite a transition.  I remember clearly hitting that transition with Civilization II, which is probably part of the reason that it remains my favorite game in the franchise.

Anyway, I am pretty sure I experienced a similar transition when it came to pet battles last week.  Before my last post on the topic, battle pets were something I did a little with every day, but it was really a secondary activity where I had little focus.  After that post, thanks to just a few bits of information that flowed my way via comments and Twitter, it was almost ALL I did i Azeroth.

So a big thanks to the people who left suggestions.  I think the biggest one was the PetBattle Teams addon, which made managing regular sets of pets… well, I was going to say easier, but since the standard UI does so little for you in that regard, I am going to go with “possible.”

PetBattle Teams on the right side...

PetBattle Teams on the right side…

With that I was able to organize some regular sets.

I also found that spot in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms, over by where the Golden Lotus daily quests are, that a couple of people mentioned.  The many pet groups that spawn over there… enough to keep three very active players leveling pets up going non-stop it seems… are mostly aquatic types and, as it turns out, I have quite a few pets good against aquatic at this point.

Fighting a multiple blue spawn in the Vale

Fighting a multiple blue spawn in the Vale

While crows were suggested as a pet, I found that the pair of my level 25 Waterfly and my level 25 Sandy Petrel were good enough to keep me going during the 8 minute cool down on pet heals.  I boosted quite a few pets over the course of the week.  In that area, if your level 1 pet can survive that first round and get swapped out, it jumps to level 5, after which it can generally survive a round even if it takes a hit.  From there the pattern seems to be two levels per fight up to level 11 or so, then one level per fight up to 15, and then two levels per fight up to about 20, at which point I am generally ready to let them face the world for the last few levels.  20 levels in less than 20 fights isn’t bad.

Of course, the area has its oddities.  I am not sure what is going on with that lake in the middle, but it seems to have two surfaces.  That makes the spawns there a bit problematic.

Under one surface, but over another

Under one surface, but over another

And when that spot got over crowded a couple of times, I was able to fly down to the river along the southern border of the Valley of the Four Winds where another host of aquatic encounters are available.  Lots of turtles and otters.

Amongst the first pets I raised up were Rascal Bot and a Shimmering Wyrmling, both of which are strong versus flying type pets.  I needed those because the first couple of battle pet masters I met after Ashlei were heavy on flying types.  Once those were available, I was able to add two more masters to my daily list of fights, and then a third once I leveled up a mechanical type.  You can see I have teams set up to battling them with their names, Vesharr, Taralune, and Cymre.

And with those opened up for daily farming, the suddenly I have 16 pet charms coming in each day, and for fifteen I can buy a Marked Flawless Battle-stone, since I have levels covered from another direction now, which upgrades any pet to rare quality.  So a lot of those poor quality pets I picked up along the way can suddenly become viable team members.

With all of this activity my rogue, who was just shy of level 96 when I posted last week, rather suddenly found himself hitting level 99 based on little more than pet battles.

Pet battle experience, it is a thing

Pet battle experience, it is a thing

Pet battles are something I need to spread out amongst alts it seems.

And, of course, with all that activity on the pet battle front, I rolled up a few achievements.

Yes, all those pet battle achievements in a row...

Yes, all those pet battle achievements in a row…

The most important on that list was probably Draenic Pet Battler, which unlocks the level 3 pet menagerie building in your garrison.  Well, it does if you are level 100 and such, but it is account wide, so Vikund was able to benefit from all this work by alts.

Another building to level 3

Another building to level 3

On the list of achievements, I do find it amusing that I got the one for raising 30 pets to level 25 before I got the one for raising 15 pets to level 10.  If you catch them above level 10, as I have on many occasion, they do not count as being raised to level 10.  You have to actually level them through that point.

So while the score of my profile over at Warcraft Pets has not changed dramatically, it is poised to improve if I keep up on this path.

score up from 1352

score up from 1352

On my list of things to do now is to work on the remaining battle pet masters in Draenor and find some more pets to fill out areas in which I am weak.  I am not well stocked against undead, I need a couple more mechanical types up to 25, and I have to find a few more flying type pets.

Quote of the Day – Bad Directions

Alliance characters that complete the Primal Combatant achievement are no longer being told to go to Orgrimmar to receive a reward.

World of Warcraft Hotfixes for February 9

That one just made me laugh.  It is a good thing that nobody reads the text, right?  Showing up in the enemy city looking for a reward might end up in an awkward situation.

Not that I haven’t spent time as an alliance player in Orgrimmar before.

 

Activision Blizzard Making More Money, WoW over 10 Million Subscribers Still

The Activision Blizzard results for the fourth quarter of 2014 were announced yesterday and, to probably nobody’s surprise, the combined companies reported making huge amounts of money.

ActiBlizz450What with Destiny still selling well, the latest Call of Duty installment somewhere out there, a World of Warcraft expansion, and Hearthstone apparently worthy of repeated mentions, the money was pouring in.

Actual footage of Bobby Kotick and Mike Morhaime during the call

Actual footage of Mike Morhaime and Bobby Kotick during the call

You can find summaries of the announcements around the web, or you can go to the Activision investor relations site to see the full financial report and the presentations.

Of course, I am more interested in Blizzard around here than the Call of Duty Activision side of the house.  The Blizzard slide shows about what we would expect.  Best annual revenues ever.  More registered users.  More good stuff coming.

Blizzard slide from the presentation deck

Blizzard slide from the presentation deck

Still, there is a point there that will be seen by some as losing by not winning enough.  Only 10 million subscribers?

I know, it says “over” 10 million, but if it was over, say, 10.5 million, they would have said over 10.5 million.  Past behavior indicates that.

And 10 million was the number they gave back in November after the expansion finally came out.  That only got us up to the Mists of Pandaria peak.  With the history of the game, anything less than 12 million will be failure in the eyes of some.

But at least this chart hasn't changed!

But at least this chart hasn’t changed!  Lich King, Best King!

Of course, that dissatisfaction with not getting back to the peak subscriber number ignores the scale of WoW’s subscriber base.  The jump from 7.4 million subscribers to over 10 million at the launch of Warlords of Draenor… 2.6 million subscribers… how many other popular MMOs would we have to stack up before we hit 2.6 million subscribers?  Not just registered users or those tagging along for free, but people who signed up to pay that $15 a month?  And what about that 10 million number?

The churn of users just coming and going since the expansion launched would probably kill some games.  You can sure as shit bet if EverQuest II had 10 million subscribers… or 7.4 million… or even 2.6 million… Smed would be telling the PlayStation people what to do rather than being sold into bondage.

World of Warcraft remains the outlier that distorts the scale when we talking about MMOs.  Comparing it to other things just doesn’t work, because even down from its peak it is still too big.

Anyway, that is the big news from Blizzard.  All money, all the time.

Oh… and one more thing.  StarCraft II – Legacy of the Void.  The mention of it being the “Final” expansion to the StarCraft II series stands out for me.  Maybe they said that back at BlizzCon and I missed it, but seeing that word “Final” on the financial presentation makes it stand out for me.

So what will the RTS team at Blizzard be doing when they have wrapped that up?

Should we read anything into the fact that the RTS team appears to be playing around with the Warcraft III assets?