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Post by Eorl @ 09:25am 09/05/13 | 66 Comments
Activision Blizzard has today revealed their latest financial report for the first quarter of 2013, and with it news that Blizzard's MMO, World of Warcraft, has again dropped in subscriber numbers, down to 8.3 million subscribers from last reports of 9.1 million (via ShackNews).

Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick stated during the financial conference call that the company is "concerned" about the recent drop . "While we have had a solid start to the year, we now believe that the risks and uncertainties in the back half of 2013 are more challenging than our earlier view, especially in the holiday quarter," he told investors in a prepared statement. "The shift in release dates of competing products, the disappointing launch of the Wii U, uncertainties regarding next-generation hardware, and subscriber declines in our World of Warcraft business all raise concerns, as do continued challenges in the global economy."

Kotick believes that in "releasing new content more frequently" the still number one MMO will be able to soften the recent subscriber drops, although admits that numbers for the title will still be down by the end of the year, citing recent competition from free-to-play titles as the major concern. Kotick also added that "we want to make it easier for lapsed players to get back into the game."

Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime also stated that competition from China's more prominent free-to-play titles played a part in the subscriber drop, with a decrease in the casual player amount as well. Morhaime also said that when casual players return, the company needs to make it easier for them to do so.

"It is important to use the transition from when players leave and then come back to make the experience less overwhelming," Morhaime said. Blizzard also plans to continue looking at player behavior and preferences when creating and releasing content updates for the MMO, one of which is coming later this month. "People consume content quickly. We need to create more innovative content to keep people engaged."



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Latest Comments
CaffeinatedTech
Posted 10:10am 09/5/13
World of Warcraft is a different game now than what it was when it was THE game to play. They've alienated the players who loved it for what it was, in an attempt to capture more of the casual gamer audience.

The problem is, the casual gamer doesn't play the same game day in and day out. They're playing new games all the time, wanting the quick fix of new stuff, cheating on Blizzard. So now they have casual gamers getting sick of it, as well as the hard core Warcraft fans now that its all different and casual friendly.

When they joined forces with Activision with all of their big ideas, they should have worked on a new title; only introducing minor tweaks to playability in existing titles. Instead they somehow wanted to capture a larger, different audience as well as keep the existing loyal customers. Clearly its not working.

Still, 8.3 million times $15 each month is some serious income. They'd want to snap out of it if they want to hang onto it. Kotick blaming everyone else isn't going to get him anywhere.

This being my opinion.
Khel
Posted 10:49am 09/5/13
If they hadn't changed WoW at all since Activision took over, I'm sure they'd have a lot less than 8.3 million subscribers now, people would have stopped playing it years ago. Take off your rose coloured glasses :)

Theres plenty of so called 'hardcore' people still playing WoW, in fact this most recent raid tier was considered by a lot of the 'hardcore' guilds to be one of the best and actually took a fair while to complete relative to previous tiers, so that doesn't really gel at all with your idea of the game becoming more casual.

I think its just the inevitable arc any game thats been out for 9 years or so will follow, people are going to get sick of it and move on.
Mosfx
Posted 12:44pm 09/5/13
Yeah I stopped playing this a year ago, there are better games around now.

On Khels comment WoW has evolved over time, its had good moments and some bad ones but they'd have alot less then 8.3million subscriptions if they hadn't made the moves they have.

There has been a huge spike in F2Play games over the last few years and even more MMO style games coming into the market, Blizzard will let WoW fizzle out in time for 'Titan'
DK
Posted 12:50pm 09/5/13
F*** wow really does cater for the lowest common dominator now and they are openly saying it. I don't understand that attitude when complex games like dota2 and LOL are doing so well.
Dazhel
Posted 01:14pm 09/5/13
Betsy the bazillion dollar cash cow isn't producing as much milk these days? Oh no!
skythra
Posted 01:35pm 09/5/13
Take off your rose coloured glasses :)

Woah, probably read that back to yourself in the mirror and see yourself wearing them too!

Not that your point is invalid, but it certainly is no less fanboyish than yours.

You really think that a game is unsustainable even with new content, complete graphics overhauls and constant innovation? What if you applied that to any other product in the world? If it's still relevant it will continue on.

The worlds population isn't decreasing, there shouldn't be a loss of subscribers unless people are interested in their 15 dollars more than their game.

Honestly I think he has a point; if you are an icecream shop (ragnarok), and your sales pitch is you have icecream, the new kid on the block sells botique gelato (wow, pre-expansion), and you steal some of his customers, but overall grow the interest in frozen treats so the exposure helps both.. but then you get greedy and you also introduce normal icecream into the mix, and lose your competitive edge, then new competitors will be more desireable as you've lost your boutique status.

This is a product issue. Not a "gamer" one. If you try to make yourself great at everything and perfect at none, your crowd will have a lot of customers with no loyalty.

Considering how big an emotional and time investment wow is, that's not really a nice thought.

What WoW player doesn't get instantly excited about a rival MMO? They test it, if WoW's brand is strong, plus the emotional investment, it will retain it's players who try out these different MMOs. But if the other MMOs hold enough value to supercede these emotional investments people have in WoW (and often 100-300 days played is a lot of emotional investment) then WoW has to look at how people are losing this bond or what they can do to rival the new products.

Brand loyalty is a strong strategy!

Also wow should be replacing it's lost users with new ones. If it can't do this, isn't that bad? It's not like the pool for MMO players is getting smaller. They're just losing touch with a percentage of players. Be it too easy or too hard or too casual or whatever, individuals seem to not be feeling important to the game. Consumers disillusioned by any product will switch products.
Khel
Posted 02:01pm 09/5/13
Woah, what? I'm not really sure what the argument is anymore, all I was saying is what MosFx said, WoW had to make the changes it made to try and stay relevant and keep subscribers/attract subscribers, and that the "The game was better back in BC days and we should go back to that!" arguments are just nostalgia driven, but not really viable. I enjoyed the game back then too, but I think the people who want to go back to those days, have forgotten about all the rough edges that have been smoothed off since then. The bar has been raised since those days and people expect more, it just wouldn't fly now.

All your other points are pretty valid, but I just see it as the life cycle of the game, I mean they're not going to spend the time or the resources at this point to completely overhaul the engine and everything cos I'd imagine all that effort is going into Titan. Plus theres just so many other options around these days, free to play or otherwise.
groganus
Posted 02:36pm 09/5/13
I feel as if this is just the start of them inciting a stock price drop before leaking more details about the next big thing.
reload!
Posted 04:35pm 09/5/13
Betsy the bazillion dollar cash cow isn't producing as much milk these days? Oh no!

haha my thoughts exactly.
s***, we might actually have to come up with a new game after almost 10 f*****g years?
Technosis
Posted 04:57pm 09/5/13
Stoped playing this about 5 or so months ago now certainly looks diffrent from back in vanilla it's just not as hard as it once was not as.... epic which is a bit of a shame to be honest

After Wrath it just went down hill -_-
Taipan
Posted 05:40pm 09/5/13
F*** wow really does cater for the lowest common dominator now and they are openly saying it. I don't understand that attitude when complex games like dota2 and LOL are doing so well.


Mate they always did cater to the lowest to the lowest thats how it got so huge in the first place. The difference was that they had had significantly tougher top end s*** bottle necking progress to the middle/average gamer. The thing being by the time those gamers reached it they had already invested enough time into the game to not want to just give it up at the first sign of things getting rough. When wow came out its game play in general was pretty damn forgiving and for lack of a better way of putting it it was easy mode mmo. Most of the people playing it couldnt of dealt with the mmos of the time because they were pretty crushing to noobs or anyone less than a little bit hardcore. Jesus i can imagine the horror of a noob to mmos that picked up a game like shadowbane for example where pvp ment win or lose everything in some cases even the gear off your back.

Blizzard did a hell of a job opening up the genre to the average punter and thats where the core of their success has been. They have been very good at staying at holding players for as long as they have.
Tiny
Posted 06:47pm 09/5/13
Khel, i completely agree with everything you just said.

I have played WOW on and off for about 8 years. I have played through and enjoyed the game casually and advanced to end game content in Wrath of the lich king. I myself bordered on casual but mostly was fairly serious about raiding at set times etc and enjoying some of the high end content. Every time i left and went back to the game you could see the changes being made to cater for the more casual gamer. People complained, people carried on about why this should have been done etc. At the end of the day, when its all said and done, WOW was a fantastic game. IT was developed by extremely talented people and had some god dam awesome content. It was fun, engaging and had great social aspects about it. It will no doubt spiral down eventually, but I see no reason why it can't keep going the way it is for another 10 years. Gaming isn't all about catering for hardcore people. There is still going to be kids, teenagers and adults who just want to fire up a game and have some fun. WOW delivered that in every aspect and it still does to this day.
Reverend Evil
Posted 07:02pm 09/5/13
I'm sure Blizzard will be fine. For a game that's been out for 8 years it's doing pretty well.
Taipan
Posted 07:04pm 09/5/13
Sorry about my f***ed up post i was kind of half paying attention and working.
Tollaz0r!
Posted 07:37pm 09/5/13


F*** wow really does cater for the lowest common dominator now and they are openly saying it. I don't understand that attitude when complex games like dota2 and LOL are doing so well.



They are clearly doing well, not as well as WoW is currently doing, 8.3m in monthly subscriptions surely beats the crap out of dota.

They certainly know how to milk this WoW cow.
Sc00bs
Posted 07:45pm 09/5/13
whats the bet they are in the works with some sort of wow 2
BladeRunner
Posted 08:27pm 09/5/13
Ive been on WoW for a couple of years now. I have also stopped playing MMOs in general, unless you count Planetside 2 and world of tanks. Kotick will be fine, he will wipe away his tears with sweaty wads of cash.
Phandaal
Posted 06:50am 10/5/13
Considering the explosion of MMOs since WoW launched, I would be curious to see what their market share % drop of players was over the past five years or so.

I'd wager it makes their drop in raw player numbers look like a gentle slope.
Creepy
Posted 10:30am 10/5/13
In other news, an 8+ year old game isn't quite as new and exciting to play as it used to be, in a market filled with alternatives.
Khel
Posted 10:35am 10/5/13
Not super up to date, only goes up to part way through 2012, but their market share is still pretty significant

Subs-1.png


And for the sake of completeness, everything else with less than 1 million subs

Subs-2.png
Crakaveli
Posted 10:54am 10/5/13
Anyone got a scroll of resurrection? wouldn't mind giving this another go.
TicMan
Posted 11:12am 10/5/13
Try Neverwinter first - bloody unreal game!
typo
Posted 01:42pm 10/5/13
Try Neverwinter first - bloody unreal game!


It's literally the worst game that Cryptic has ever released.
Hogfather
Posted 01:44pm 10/5/13
It's literally the worst game that Cryptic has ever released.

Nah its fun, you are literally bad at almost everything so this is a compliment IMO.
Eorl
Posted 01:50pm 10/5/13


It's literally the worst game that Cryptic has ever released.

I wouldn't say it is the "worst game" that Cryptic have done, but it isn't for everyone. It is very PvE centric, so if you don't like doing dungeons and teamwork you won't like Neverwinter. I'm having a blast on my Guardian but each to their own.
skythra
Posted 01:57pm 10/5/13
the "The game was better back in BC days and we should go back to that!" arguments are just nostalgia driven, but not really viable.
They are nostalgia driven, often misrepresentations of their feelings of feeling like the game doesn't represent how they want to play it anymore. I'm not agreeing with all the points, but he really hit has hit a valid point with:
They've alienated the players who loved it for what it was, in an attempt to capture more of the casual gamer audience. The problem is, the casual gamer doesn't play the same game day in and day out. They're playing new games all the time, wanting the quick fix of new stuff, cheating on Blizzard.
I think this is a perfectly reasonable statement by itself. It's unqualified and simple, but a plenty good point that blizzard are trying to probably trying to address:

How do they make a casual gamer into a hardcore gamer, to keep them invested in their product? They've really got a fantastic formula and the community really can be misleading when it complains because noone will like it if they remove all the new smoother way of end gaming to the rough, laboriousness task of the old. But I definately believe that players think that the 'high end' is too accessible, which I would suggest to mean that there's no prestige for the best gamers.

In other games it's easier to define. In the Old WoW pre-expansions of any kind, it was pretty well defined (and honestly, as much as everyone pretended they did it, nax 40 was only cleared by a few guilds per server).

Is that what they're missing? I don't know. Maybe. If i knew, im sure blizzard could employ me to grow their userbase again.

PS: I have very little investment into wow. I quit a few years back so i only hear winging. I meet a few people who play it now and again in a bar or at a party but i prefer once i hear that to disassociate with them. However from a purely marketing point of view, i see it as a fun little exercise. Much like how bitcoins was a fun little economic theory.

:)
Hogfather
Posted 01:59pm 10/5/13
I love WoW but every time I load it it just feels really old. I didn't even finish the padaspansion, f***ed if I know what Im gonna do when the next one comes out.
defi
Posted 02:18pm 10/5/13
Does anyone else think that dungeon finder / cross realm dungeons killed it a little?

I remember forming up a group actually meant something and you made friends with the people you dungeon-ed with because if they were baddies it was going to suck. Also Dungeons were decently difficult, and 1 wrong pull meant you could get destroyed. E.g Strathholme Baron run, when you accidentally pulled a bat.

Since BC its pretty much been AOE tank, dps burn etc for dungeons and the only challenges are boss fights, which are just tank and spanks with a little bit of movement.

Also the realm I am on since Xferring from Blackrock in the 5000 que days (Now Dreadmaul) is dead. And I really CBF xfering all my characters back over to a popular realm.

Basically Im over it
Hogfather
Posted 02:39pm 10/5/13
Yeh the dungeon finder is weird. It adds convenience at the cost of community. Every cross realm dungeon run I've been on has felt disconnected from the party, almost like a single player game for some reason. These are people you are very unlikely to ever see again.

The entire dungeon experience is watered down and tedious after the first run or so. GW2's dungeon difficulty was refreshing if brutal :)
Khel
Posted 02:54pm 10/5/13
Thats why they introduced challenge modes I guess, challenge modes are quite difficult. Lots of fun with a group of friends, evokes memories of heroic shattered halls runs.
Tollaz0r!
Posted 03:11pm 10/5/13
I really hope that Blizzard end WoW with a big bang, a last Hurrah!

That they release 1 last expansion that will see the game come to a close, a final conflict between Horde and Alliance, with 1 side the total victor. Then when it is finished, release their next big thing.

I would think their numbers would jump for those last few months, the hardcore will see a TRUE end game, the casual will play it just to experience the end and those that have left may also rejoin to see the end. It could be spectacular.

Of course that will only happen if Blizzard have a replacement product ready to go and are happy to finish the game on a high note instead of milking it until it dies a dehydrated pathetic death.
Hogfather
Posted 03:24pm 10/5/13
Of course that will only happen if Blizzard have a replacement product ready to go and are happy to finish the game on a high note instead of milking it until it dies a dehydrated pathetic death.

Yeh, like some sort of unannounced MMO title or something..!
TicMan
Posted 03:34pm 10/5/13
LBRS, UBRS, Scholo, Strath .. waiting hours to get a group, these 5/10-mans taking hours to complete.. ah yeah, the good old days (I mean it, those were fun).
Hogfather
Posted 03:46pm 10/5/13
LGuk, Sol B. Waiting hours at dungeon ent on a list to get into a s***** PUG to maybe have a chance to roll on FBSS, SMR or GEBs..

Its amazing the sort of s*** that looks good in hindsight!
Taipan
Posted 03:59pm 10/5/13
I really have to wonder where they are going to go with their next mmo? Itd be hard in a way for them to make sonething thats very different given the undeniable success that wow was. However recycling the same old crap likely wont hold anyones attention for to long and doom it.

I cant say that i am confident that they can pull off something huge because i keep looking at D3 which was a massive swing and a miss as far as i am concerned. Personally i think it only sold like it did because it had a loving fan base from prior installments.
redhat
Posted 04:14pm 10/5/13
Having to do enough dailies every week to keep up with gearing for extra rolls was pretty much the reason I finally quit in MoP. It's not fun.

Hopefully titan is better and they learnt from D3.

WoW is just getting old.
Khel
Posted 04:20pm 10/5/13
Yeah, having to do the dailies for those tokens f*****g sucks. I didn't mind it so much when I was on my priest, cos I had done so many dailies anyway to get rep with all the faction, I had like 900 spare lesser charm thingies. Recently swapped to my monk that has none though and it f*****g SUCKS. I like the bonus rolls, thats a cool idea, but they need to find a better way to do the tokens. Or maybe make them account wide or something, I dunno. All the ones on my priest just sit there un-used now :(
Reverend Evil
Posted 04:32pm 10/5/13
I didn't do any dailies in MoP except for when IoT came out and after a few days I said f*** it and stopped. Hit reverend with the sunreavers and never went back to the island. I'm having more fun rolling new toons and just mucking around in LFG. The only thing I hate that Blizzard has done is say they're not making any more 5 mans for this xpac because I f*****g hate using the LFR option. It doesn't feel like you're part of a group using that thing.
Ha
Posted 04:32pm 10/5/13
vanilla wow was awesome.

as soon as they released bc, i got to 70 and quit. it just didn't have enough appeal to make me want to do 'it' again.

no regrets, the year or so i spent playing wow i look back on fondly. good times.
defi
Posted 04:37pm 10/5/13
LBRS, UBRS, Scholo, Strath .. waiting hours to get a group, these 5/10-mans taking hours to complete.. ah yeah, the good old days (I mean it, those were fun).
I totally agree. I remember UBRS runs before Leeroy Jenkins, and how epic they were. Before DPS counters, Before dedicated Tanking gear. So much fun.
redhat
Posted 04:59pm 10/5/13
Actual lols by ctrl-alt-delete for once:

FTH
Phandaal
Posted 08:05pm 10/5/13
"LGuk, Sol B. Waiting hours at dungeon ent on a list to get into a s***** PUG to maybe have a chance to roll on FBSS, SMR or GEBs..

Its amazing the sort of s*** that looks good in hindsight!"

I played EQ on Tallon Zek, where this kind of carebear garbage never happened.

You got a group together and went traveling to see what you could find. You might run into some enemies and PvP or check out a few dungeons and see what sort of mischief you could get up to.

If you wanted an FBSS, you would go and fight whoever was at the spawn and take it from them. Of course, then you would in turn have to defend it yourself as they went crying to their friends and bring a dozen guildmates down on your heads.

That kind of evening could turn into a massive guild on guild pvp slaughter, and you would actually be fighting over territory as the winner would get to camp said FBSS unmolested for days.

Sometimes, your group of explorers would poke their noses into a area and lo-and-behold a raid boss your guild needs has spawned. Quick smart, you get the band together and rush on down to try and drop him before your rival guilds get wind of it and come to crash the party.

EQ was an accidental pvp hit, pretty much all the problems that existed on the PvE servers were not problems at all on the PvP servers but rather became "player generated content".

Instanced dungeons and the implementation of the dungeon finder killed any sense of exploration or immersion that WoW may have had. It reinforced the idea that the game world was an inconvenience standing in between you and your lootgasm.
TicMan
Posted 08:42pm 10/5/13
I didn't play EQ but have similar fond memories of WoW. World PvP existed and you'd go running around trying to find people to kill.. Crossroads or Tarren Mill - that was epicness right there. There was hours spent in those two places!

I was a lucky b**** in an UBRS run and got one of those deception orbs that sold for hundreds of gold so was able to buy the ridiculously expensive epic mount (800g?). My mage then turned into a POM + POLY + PYRO spam machine on his way up and down Eastern Kingdom.

S*** I even remember waking up one morning hung over and deciding to go from Undercity to Booty Bay on my mount through all the alliance territory. Got plenty kills, got plenty killed, got camped, had huge gangs of lower level guys ganging up on me, etc. Was a lot of fun!
skythra
Posted 08:55pm 10/5/13
i remember when a lvl 60 would be smashing noobs in booty bay and you'd call up all your guild to come kill him, once. They'd res and cheer and all were level 40 because you didn't quest to 60, you grinded.

Remember: it wasn't fun at the time though, but it was rewarding. In that sense that you never thought that one day you'd sell your char for only 500 dollars on a dodgy auction, which came to about 2 dollars a day played.
JakeG
Posted 10:28pm 10/5/13
Yeah WOW provided some good times.. me (priest) and a mate (mage) used to farm huge crowded areas together. Draw aggro with our mounts, meet up, he'd spam AOE and i'd heal the s*** out of him. I only played when the lvl cap was 60.

PVP was the bomb, I don't think I ever raided..

JakeG
Posted 10:36pm 10/5/13
Remember: it wasn't fun at the time though, but it was rewarding. In that sense that you never thought that one day you'd sell your char for only 500 dollars on a dodgy auction, which came to about 2 dollars a day played.


That's bi-winning!

Grinding wasn't fun but damn good MMO's can suck you in.

Now I only play pick-up put-down games. Even DOTA annoys me that I have to commit to the next hr and if something pops up i'm fked. Wish Quake Live had servers in asia.... so lame.
infi
Posted 11:21pm 10/5/13
Well I never played WoW because I heard how addictive it was but I did play GuildWars2 which I expect is virtually the same thing. It was addictive to start off but once you hit max level, all there is left: is the 100% complete missions and the occasional new feature they add in Halloween Christmas other specials.

World vs World get boring real quick, and the PVP in GW2 was fundamentally broken.

What is so good about WoW that could keep someone playing for 9 years.....?
TicMan
Posted 11:46pm 10/5/13
Infi, come join Neverwinter! It's like GW2 but heaps better.. and free.
Ha
Posted 11:50pm 10/5/13
What is so good about WoW that could keep someone playing for 9 years.....?


I'm having more fun rolling new toons and just mucking around in LFG.


basically this. it's nothing but the people who think 130kg is 'a little overweight' that think that spending 9 years on wow is time well spent.
infi
Posted 12:01am 11/5/13
free huh

tried to sign up the site is borked.
Khel
Posted 12:27am 11/5/13
it's nothing but the people who think 130kg is 'a little overweight' that think that spending 9 years on wow is time well spent.


Why does it have to be time well spent? Its a game, how is any time spent playing games time well spent? Fun though, and thats the important bit (and by that I just mean games in general are fun, obviously whether or not someone finds wow fun is a subjective thing).
Lithium
Posted 03:25am 11/5/13
I wish WoW would just keel over and die already. half their player base is probably filled with Chinese gold farmers.
Taipan
Posted 08:41am 11/5/13
Khel there is a pretty sizable difference between the punter playing games and the average Wow player. You don't get anywhere or anything if you just jump into wow for an hour here and there (that's the average punter). Wow players devote enormous amount of time to hitting max level and gearing up via instances. The bulk of wows following is no way in hell average 1-2 hour a day gamers because the game wouldn't hold f*** all interest for them because they'd never achieve anything at all.

Nine years of Wow is a massive investment of personal time and that's what the game demands if you ever hope to get anywhere in it. I have mentioned this before in another thread, I was living with a mate of mine from work and in the first 3 years of wow he had one of his chars hit 365 days played and that was just one of his 4 or 5 chars. So for 1/3 of his existence in that 3 years he spent playing Wow, seriously how f***ed is that? The scary thing is he isn't alone in doing this it was common place in my guild and other guilds I knew. I don't know any BF or CS players that would sink that kind of time into their respective games, I don't doubt there are a few but not like there are in Wow not even close.
Khel
Posted 06:13pm 11/5/13
Oh yeah, absolutely, theres nothing healthy about that, I'm not condoning that sort of behaviour, but it seems a little unfair to blame games for that when it seems the problem lies more with the person playing them.
Taipan
Posted 07:33pm 11/5/13
The trouble khel these games like most games are on some level competitive and for people to stand on an even footing with their peers they have to sink f*** loads of time into it. Thats a design issue but i wouldnt outright blame the devs for that because they are kind of damn if they do damn if they dont when it comes to striking a balance between casualish gamers and hardcore no lifers.
skythra
Posted 07:47pm 11/5/13
Oh yeah, absolutely, theres nothing healthy about that, I'm not condoning that sort of behaviour, but it seems a little unfair to blame games for that when it seems the problem lies more with the person playing them.

But by that logic you can say there's no such thing as problem gambling only problem gamblers.

Imagine if their whole group of friends reinforced the gambler that what they're doing is a good thing?

Honestly, i've met more wow players who will admit more than 40 hours a week on the game (basically 4-6 hours a night after work plus weekend time) than i meet those who just play it casually.

That's why i don't play wow anymore, i was one of them. At one point on a uni semester break i was clocking in over 120 hours a week. Literally to get grand master it was necessary to do that for more than two months.

Obviously those days are gone now, but people are putting that much time in and calling it 'social' but it's just surrounding themselves with people with the same problem.
Taipan
Posted 08:06pm 11/5/13
Pretty much spot on there.
shad
Posted 08:26pm 11/5/13
Oh god I remember how bad it was when PVP ranks first came in. Managed to get Marshal. For Grand Marshall, people were playing in teams on a character 24 hours a day.
Taipan
Posted 08:48pm 11/5/13
Yeah there was a guy in my bracket that had his enitire family constantly rolling him through battle grounds 24/7 and he held the rank for months which was totally f***ed up.
Khel
Posted 09:34pm 11/5/13
I don't think they could have 10 million subscribers (or 8.3 million now) if they didn't have a very large number of casual players, cos there just isn't that many 'hardcore' gamers anymore. It might seem out of proportion because we're in a community built from gamers, but I'd imagine the sort of person who plays that seriously is in the minority, or at the very least, is not the majority. And if it wasn't WoW for those people, it would be another game. I mean, people have died playing Starcraft 2 because they played it so much they forgot to eat (and I remember stories of people back in the day dying while playing Everquest, I think they even put a timer in the game to tell you to take a break because of it). There'll always be something for people with obsessive personalities to obsess over, I guess its just MMOs offer the deepest rabbit hole to go down for those types of people.

The argu,emt pf whether WoW is friendly for casual people seems to be a rather tricky one to tackle because there doesn't seem to be any safe ground to stand on, I mean this thread started off arguing that WoW has become TOO casual and is now ending up arguing that WoW is too hardcore, so I don't really know where to start :P But you can still play it for a few hours here and there and make progress, you wont be level 90 in a few weeks and raiding heroics, but if you're a casual player just playing for a few hours here and there, thats probably not something you're aiming for anyway. It takes all sorts, there was people in my guild on alliance who did nothing much but play the new pet battles and level up all their pets (and by all accounts the pet battles have been massively popular amongst the playerbase in general), so I think the casual wow player is alive and well and represented amongst the population.
skythra
Posted 10:30pm 11/5/13
Oh god I remember how bad it was when PVP ranks first came in. Managed to get Marshal. For Grand Marshall, people were playing in teams on a character 24 hours a day.

Yeah i ran a BG team for between 10-16 hours a day all regulars and we had to make sure we kicked people at certain times to make sure they sat under certain points. IE: only GM for that week got the top points in the server, and the aimed at hitting GM the week after etc came second. If someone decided to bot it actually slowed everyone's progression for at least a week+ by throwing all the numbers off.

It was super stupid.

Yeah Khel they must do, but i mean i meet people, not just guys, i mean girls and guys who i've met for the first time, from a group of non-gamers who literally talk about playing 40 hours plus. I mean like uni kids, highschool dropoout band members, people with jobs or kids, all kinds of worrying situations sometimes. Heard firsthand what sounded suspiciously close to neglect of recently born children to play wow.

But we've got so many topics running around.

Back to the definition of hardcore though: I know sc2 players who don't play as many hours as a lot of wow players I've met, but are up in the grandmasters, winning tournaments. And that's where i'd like to draw my conclusion: hardcore shouldn't be meaasured by time played.

Although there's no doubt that time played will be incredibly important for training to be hardcore. There's no doubt, but i think some of these 'casual' wow players are putting in a *lot* of hours because 1) its easy to, and 2) because its needed politically to do any of even 'casual' end game. The once a week raiders still have to get their reagents, potions, etc even if the raid is only 2-3 hours long on a thursday night.

Most of the time i found that for raids, it took more time to prepare for a raid than to raid. There was no diablo money for gold mechanic, so you could either buy gold illegally (my preference as a casual raider later on in my wow career) or spend time farming reagents, gold, etc to get the mats needed to be prepared.

Anyway i'm not sure my point anymore; but time doesn't equal hardcore, or rather it shouldn't. I'm not sure a MMO hosted in america can be hardcore in different ways though. It can't be based on skill if 200-500ms is the ping that's for sure. Not in its current format.

Anyway what topic are we on or have we covered every issue that MMO's have?

edit: also i'm really out of date about wow, the last expansion i played was about 3 months into wotlk. Some of this might have changed. *shrugs* feel free to correct me.
Taipan
Posted 11:17pm 11/5/13
I think the point if there is one is that Wow casual gamers aren't the same as Battlefield 3 casual gamers or CS casual gamers for example. They very well have been when they first picked up Wow but the nature of the game required them to put in more time. A casual Wow gamer probably still pulls something like 12 hours a week at a minimum but a FPS casual gamer probably wouldn't crack 6 hours a week. Sure those numbers are a guess but I based them conservatively around what I consider for myself when I am not going all out to kill the s*** out of a game. Hell 12 hours a week wouldn't get you 5 fifths of f*** all in reguards to progress in wow particularly at level cap.

Wow was good at bringing in people new to the genre and it was even better at getting them to sacrifice more time and effort to the game than they otherwise usually would. Like Skythra said about having 20 other people dragging you into it which would of played into the whole deal.

I was glad when I finally put wow to rest after BC it honestly felt like I had gotten a monkey off my back....... a big fat hairy sweaty bastard he was too
Tiny
Posted 07:54am 12/5/13
Since BC its pretty much been AOE tank, dps burn etc for dungeons and the only challenges are boss fights, which are just tank and spanks with a little bit of movement.


Nah, not Really. Wrath was aoe tanking. Cata and Pandaland were more crowd control and strategy intensive. You did actually have to watch what you pulled and in what order etc. Not as much as vanilla but they still brought that back into the fold.
defi
Posted 09:11am 12/5/13
Cata and Pandaland were more crowd control and strategy intensive
Not as soon as your tank and healer were geared, then farming was back to Aoe tanking. Really in Vanilla, there was such a lack of gearing it stayed so strategically intensive for much much longer.

I may or may not know a guy who played on a private vanilla server, and tanks semi regularly. I may or may not get f***ed up when trying to aoe tank often.
Exibus
Posted 10:34am 12/5/13
Anyone got a scroll of resurrection? wouldn't mind giving this another go.


Send me your email and i'll send one through!
Khel
Posted 09:08pm 12/5/13
Agreed that normal 5 mans are pretty much just aoe tanking spamfests now, but they're intentionally easier these days cos it'd be too frustrating to do hard 5 mans with random made groups. Really, try the challenge modes, you can't aoe tank that s***, and you need CC and you need to play smart. Can't outgear them either because all your gear is scaled down to the level of dungeon blues and all the mobs in the instance are scaled up to be level 92, bosses are given new abilities, etc. Its fun!
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