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Monday, March 14, 2011

Are we all having fun yet?

A lot of people have been posting recently about a possible lull in players on their servers. Here's a few of the posts:

I'm not going to get too much into it because, perhaps I've just had my head down and my nose to the grind stone but I haven't really noticed it.  What I will say is that Rift will kill WoW. Just like Warhammer killed WoW. Just like Aion killed WoW. Just like Age of Conan killed WoW. Just like Eve Online killed WoW. Just like . . .  (Edit: Apparently EVE is older than WoW? Haha, that's hilarious, it only really became a big thing around here a year ago. I guess we're more backwater than I thought!)

It will be foolish to say that WoW will never die.  Just as D2 did before it WoW will probably eventually lose most of its player base when something truly better comes along.  But I do not think that time is now.  So often people have said "x game that is similar to WoW with better graphics will kill WoW" and every time there's a max exodus of players.  Every time most seem to return.

Tell me, do you have a character on every server? Do you have an 85 on more than two servers?  Probably not.  Why? Because we "grow roots."  We have in-game roots in the form of gold, characters, achievements, professions, etc.  We also have intangible roots, like the social interaction of our guilds and perhaps even reputations on our servers.

WoW doesn't hold its players on pretty graphics, it holds us because we have ties here. We have friends here and people like to go venture out and meet new people, try new things. But most people will usually return to their comfort zone.  If there is a slump in sales and in WoW players in general I don't anticipate it lasting long.

Faidian Slip will come tomorrow; my internet and Youtube just are not getting along on the days I want them to!


  1. Guilds Kill MMOs

    When all my mates leave so will I , I play for the community not really fussed about the game but I played most of the games listed and Some are better then WoW .

    But all have there Flaws EvE is truly amazing but the time required to play it is amazing 12hrs PVP ops ( no Joke )

    LOTR Is great I love it but there is just no content once you hit top level and they broke the crafting .

    WoW will die But i will be slow Probably another few Year but in my View the Peak of subs has gone

    Zoxy ( Getting Ready for SWTOR )

  2. EVE came out 18 months before WoW ;)

    Saying that, while I don't think Rift is a WoW killer, I do believe that it is having more of an impact than any of the other MMOs that came before it.

    I'm in agreement with Zoxy that the peak has come, and the slow decline has begun.

    I'm playing Rift, EVE and WoW at the moment and can't bring myself to drop any of them right now, although I did have a whole 2 week break from WoW recently, but I missed the raiding so came back primarily for that.

  3. @Moravec: Well, it wouldn't be the first time Utah was behind the times! EVE only got really big around my college about a year ago! We're just a bunch of squares I suppose! QQ

  4. I have noticed ... something. Something is different, there just isn't the excitement like there was pre 3.1 in Wrath. Be it the overtuned heroics/raids, the change in healing mechanics, or something else. Something is different, I think it is telling Blizz doesn't publish sub numbers anymore. It is fair to say WoW is in decline, but that doesn't mean the end is near, WoW has a huge base.

    Like Zoxy, I too am getting ready for SWTOR.

  5. @Anonymous: I can definitely agree with that. Possibly it's because 4.1 won't even have new raid content? Regardless, I can definitely see what you mean.

  6. How do you "get ready" for SWTOR (or any other new game)? I hear that all the time. As far as I can tell, "getting ready" means talking about it, reading about it, getting caught up in the hype... and still playing Warcraft. Other games are a common topic in /trade or guild chat. But, hey, they're all still playing Warcraft!

    After people "get ready" for these games, they go play them for a month or so, then return to Warcraft where their friends and guild mates are. Where their "roots" are. This is obviously a generalization as it's clear that some players do leave Warcraft for another game and never return, but subscriptions are a numbers game.

    I agree with Faid. Warcraft will continue to survive. Actually, it will continue to thrive. Not forever, but for a very long time to come yet.

  7. I am not so sure about the health.

    I certainly, and correctly, ridiculed the AoC/WH/Aion FOTM WoW-Killer hype.

    This time feels different. Could just be me. But I think Blizzard has a fundamental problem;
    The new guild rewards system and the harder heroics especially are putting a lot of stress on guilds. ( You are much more likely to unsub if your guild fades away than if it is vibrant. ) Bliz decided to up the stress/effort/l2p when there is a non-trivial competitor. Rift may or may not be a better game than WoW, but it is newer and while similar to WoW provides new-to-the-player experiences that killing the 200th TB spider this month can not.

    I used to could spend a fair amount of time on alts. But the linear phased quest chains, and same quests for horde/alli really hurt re-playability esp after your 3rd or 4th 85.

    Three months ago I would have absolutely agreed with your assessment. But Cata seems like the completely wrong expansion to put up against Rift. It's not about WoW going away. But will WoW go from 13m subs to 10? 8?

  8. @Anonymous (12:34 March 21): True and very well put. My guild did not suffer much; we were among the top 3 ten man guilds in Wrath and are in the top 10 tens in Cata. (All the more "hardcore" 25s breaking into tens pushed us down the rankings.)

    We struggled with heroics but by January we had nearly finished Glory of the Hero and had a good amount of geared players to help the new 85s, etc. etc. Admittedly most in my guild didn't feel the sting of difficulty that a lot of people in smaller or less progressed guilds might. Hadn't really thought about that, but you're definitely right, a strong guild is often what makes or breaks someone's bond with the game.


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