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World of Warcraft Sales Figures Soar in Europe

Zonk posted more than 9 years ago | from the that's-a-lot-of-night-elves dept.

Role Playing (Games) 57

GamesIndustry.biz has the word that the sales figures on release day for World of Warcraft here in the states have been exceeded by the game's European launch. Slagged servers crumpled and the account creation site on the Blizzard Europe homepage was taken down for a few hours on release day. From the article: "According to figures released by the developer, the subscription-based MMORPG sold more than 280,000 units on day one - more than it sold on its first day in the States - before sales rose to 380,000 by the end of its first weekend on sale."

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Overcharging Gamers??? (3, Interesting)

ZephyrXero (750822) | more than 9 years ago | (#11680214)

Has Blizzard or any of the other MMORPG guys ever posted the actual cost of running such a service vs. how much money they are taking in on it? The gamers have to pay $50 ($80 for the "special edition") and then a $13 monthly fee, not to mention the expansion packs when they come out. With hundreds of thousands of people playing this game they are making hundreds of millions each year...and I seriously doubt it costs that much to run one of these games properly.

Maybe games like Guildwars can prove you don't have to rip your customers off to be successful?

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (5, Informative)

yotto (590067) | more than 9 years ago | (#11680315)

Not to sound like an economist or, worse, a republican, but the cost of doing business is only one piece of the pie when it comes to charging for what you sell. If they are making the most money possible, then they are charging the correct amount. If they are not, they are not (And the correct amount, if they are not charging it, is something else).

If you don't think it is a fair amount, don't pay it. If enough people agree with you, they'll have to lower (or, strangely, sometimes raise) the price eventually or fold. It's the way the (capitalist) world works.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (2, Insightful)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 9 years ago | (#11681678)

What's more, the "correct price" is almost always higher than the minimum price necessary to get everyone to buy the product. For example, a company could give away their product for free, and pretty much everyone who was offered it would take it, but the company would still make more money if they charged a million dollars for it and only one person bought one.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (1)

generalleoff (760847) | more than 9 years ago | (#11682696)

Yea I didn't agree with the double ended dildo Blizzard wants to screw people with (Pay a high price for the game and then pay a fee to play) so I didnt buy the game. I dont much care that the games expensive or that it has a monthly fee. It's that it has both that pissed me off. If there going to charge me a monthly fee to play the game should have been free or more (in real world logic) $25 - $35. If there going to charge me $55 then I dont want to pay a monthly fee to play. The games a hit though so my opinion is deffinitly in the minority.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (0)

ZephyrXero (750822) | more than 9 years ago | (#11683739)

Exactly! Pick one or the other, but not both! WoW is a great game... I played in the open beta, but I refuse to be ripped off like this reguardless of how good it may be.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (2, Insightful)

mcbevin (450303) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689023)

How do you figure they are ripping you off exactly? If a million people are prepared to pay for it using the current pricing scheme, it makes no sense for them to lower the price to appeal to say a few thousand people who take your stance or simply can't afford it, as the total income they'd get would be less, and they're not a charity.

So accepting they're not a charity, and that their sales figures justify the price, you should accept that the overall price they're demanding is reasonable. Regarding how they balance this price between the monthly fee + initial price, they could of course drop the initial price, but they would then have to raise the monthly fee correspondingly. Or vice versa. But neither option would neccessarily make you any better off. Based on their sales figures, I'd say they've probably found a good balance. Even if the balance could be better, thats just a problem for them and their business model - if they get the balance wrong then less people will purchase the product, however it doesn't equate to them 'ripping' you off.

For example, I buy very few CDs any more, and won't until the music companies find a more sensible business model (i.e. charging me a monthly fee for unlimited or a large number of album downloads - a business model which makes use of the possibilities the internet provides, and doesn't force me to pay for the unneccessary distribution network and associated costs associated with CDs). However I don't say they're ripping me off by sticking with their old distribution model - rather if anything they're ripping themselves off, as rather than receiving a potentially large monthly fee from me they receive next to nothing.

By 'refusing to be ripped off' however you're only hurting yourself (presuming you really do like the game and think the total price is worth it for you), as a million other users have already declared that blizzard isn't ripping them off with the prices by purchasing the game so blizzard isn't going to care if you don't buy it.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (1)

ZephyrXero (750822) | more than 9 years ago | (#11690113)

You really think b/c a few million people agree on something it's right? Have you seen the billboard music charts? More sales do not equal better. If you thought like that, then Madden football is the greatest game ever made (Definitely not!) and Bush actually deserved to stay president....

"Never underestimate the power of human stupidity"...

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (1)

YOU LIKEWISE FAIL IT (651184) | more than 9 years ago | (#11693376)

Unfortunately, in economic terms, the grandparent is absolutely correct. Blizzard isn't marketing some grand eternal truth here, they're marketing a product.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (3, Insightful)

DerWulf (782458) | more than 9 years ago | (#11687578)

From my personal value standpoint, I have to say this: seeing as no game guarantees a month worths fun and indeed, many 50 games I bought didn't even last 2 weeks for me, I'd say that WoW is a pretty good deal, considering that the first month of online play is free. I just know (and have known from the beta) that I'd certainly enjoy this game longer than 4 weeks. But of course there is no argueing about such things, if the price is to high for you, you're right with not buying it.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (2, Insightful)

JavaLord (680960) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689392)

It's that it has both that pissed me off. If there going to charge me a monthly fee to play the game should have been free or more (in real world logic) $25 - $35. If there going to charge me $55 then I dont want to pay a monthly fee to play. The games a hit though so my opinion is deffinitly in the minority.

So which do you think should be free, the development of the software, or the updates and maintainence of the servers/game? I agree that it would be nice if there was a digital distribution system ala steam and the software price got knocked down a bit, but the fact remains you must pay for the software development (this game probably was in development for like 3 years) and for the server mantainence and patches. So you pay $15 a month. If you play just 15 hours a month, you are paying a dollar an hour. That is cheaper than a movie, a trip to the arcade, going out to eat in a decent resturant, etc. I don't think the fee is unreasonable.

Plus, how many players play a lot more than 15 hours a month? I'd bet most people are paying as little as 50 cents an hour to play. Compare that to any arcade you've ever been to.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (1)

generalleoff (760847) | more than 9 years ago | (#11689626)

There is that point also yer right. But from what i have herd regarding the servers... wow...

My buddy Bob got cought in a few roll backs in a row cuz of there server problems. He was very pissed and it was very funny. His opinion on the game is it's good and he is a little bent on the high price but decided he would rather play the game then not play it so he paid but he also feels they ended the beta teast to early and that the game didnt feel complete and they did NOT have the servers ready at all.

I just think charging like this is no diffrent then if AOL had charged you for there software and then a monthly fee to use it. I would think blizzard could do better if they treated the game in the way most Linux distros work. You can buy a pre burned CD for a small fee or you can download the ISO free and burn it yerself. This combined with a free trial like they already have would put the game into ALOT of peoples hands that cant afford the $50 price in one lump sum but might be able to float the monthly fee.

I understand what you mean tohugh and can see the flaws in my opinion on the one side but I can see the possible binifits on the other as well.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (1)

Knightking (810855) | more than 9 years ago | (#11703522)

My buddy Bob got cought in a few roll backs in a row cuz of there server problems.
Significant rollbacks (over 5 minutes) is about the only problem that WoW has not had server related. There have been a few, but well under one per server.
You can buy a pre burned CD for a small fee or you can download the ISO free and burn it yerself.
I'd sure Blizzard would have loved to do that, but Valve barely managed to even sell thier game online. Do you think Vivendi would ever allow Blizz to give a game away free, completly cutting them out of the money?

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (1)

osgeek (239988) | more than 9 years ago | (#11690752)

Not to sound like an economist or, worse, a republican,

That wasn't so hard, now was it?

Now, repeat after me:

"Sean Hannity rocks!"
"Get your hands off my hard-earned tax dollars, commie!"
"James Carville is an incarnation of Satan"


For further reading: Pudge's Journal [slashdot.org]

Nah, it's a bargain, in the long run. (2, Insightful)

deanj (519759) | more than 9 years ago | (#11680345)

I can't speak about WoW, but in Everquest, there are a lot of things that go into the game beyond what's there at the initial launch. (I don't count bug fixes, or game mechanic adjustments).

In Everquest, a lot of things go in. New quests, new gear, new tradeskill items, new spells, new zones open up, etc.

When a LOT of new stuff goes in at once, they do it as an expansion. Expansions were usually $20-$30. There's an upcoming "expansion" (although it's hard for me to call it that), that will be about $5. It's a very small, targeted sort of thing.

People that aren't into MMORPG usually see the monthly charge and recoil in horror. I played EQ1 just about exclusively for 5 years. I played nearly no other game during that time. Before that, I'd buy a $50 game every month or so. I spent a lot more on games before EQ, that's for sure.

Re:Nah, it's a bargain, in the long run. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11680441)

Interesting point, I never really thought about it that way.
Those game seem to be much more involved and last alot longer than...Call of Duty or something.

Good Point.

Re:Nah, it's a bargain, in the long run. (1)

ZiakII (829432) | more than 9 years ago | (#11681457)

Its sad but its true I've been playing EQ1 for about 3-4 years now and it got me from playing both Consoles and PCs just to PCs... granted i'm sure I grew older and got more mature but it was probally EQ....

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (2, Interesting)

snuf23 (182335) | more than 9 years ago | (#11680427)

If you have played Guild Wars and you have played a more traditional MMO, you would realize that Guild Wars is more like Diablo with a 3D interface. Diablo as well did not have a monthly fee, so I hardly see why Guild Wars model is considered so ground breaking. Smaller instanced zones, not much for towns, limited economy, small party size, limited crafting, no player buildings etc. Guild Wars will also charge extra for expansions featuring new zones or new character classes.
Most MMOs develop additional content that is included with your monthly subsription. I find that when I am into an MMO I usually spend less a month on gaming. Since a new game can run upwards of $50, paying $12 or $15 a month is cheaper than purchasing even one new game. Considering I probably purchase 2-4 games a month when not heavily into an MMO.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (1)

ZephyrXero (750822) | more than 9 years ago | (#11683271)

That's interesting... I wasn't aware that it was so stripped down, if what you are saying is correct. It claims to be a MMORPG from what I've seen...but Diablo definitely was not one.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (1)

snuf23 (182335) | more than 9 years ago | (#11683799)

I played in the beta weekend events. Guild Wars is definately an interesting game, but the feel really is more Diablo. For example the starter town is very samll and even has a bunch of guys standing around that serve the same sort of functions as in Diablo. The weaponsmith, the crafter who can combine items, the level up trainer etc.
As far as I could tell, the quest party size maxes out at 4. You can also get NPCs to join you in your party if you can't find live players which was a neat feature.
The one element I really didn't like was that you can only take a limited number of skills with you on a quest. You have sort of a skill load out. If I recall correctly, you get to take 4 skills from your primary class and 2 from your secondary (all characters are dual classed, such as fighter/necromancer etc.). You can change your buildout for each quest.
The game engine is very nice looking but suffers from some odd limitations. You can't jump, so any difference in terrain level acts as a barrier. You may need to wind your way down a path rather than slide down a hill for example.
If directly compared to World of Warcraft, it feels much more limited and sort of restrictive (I'm not a huge WoW fan, but I did play the open beta).

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (1)

JVert (578547) | more than 9 years ago | (#11810517)

I wish they made it a bit clearer of what you were playing. It was a preview event, call it the first level of quake, not the first episode of doom.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (3, Insightful)

UDGags (756537) | more than 9 years ago | (#11680853)

I doubt they are overcharging gamers. The game sells for $50/$80 but that is not what Blizzard gets back. There are a few middle men/businesses in between that get a good portion of that revenue. I would say that the money they made from the buying of the game covers developement costs or close to it. Let's assume they have 500,000 active accounts per month at $15 a month. That is a total of $7.5 million dollars monthly. They have probably around 200 servers. Their bandwidth I would assume would be extremely large including the game and websites. Buying the servers and maintaining the bandwidth is not cheap. Along with the people running the servers, making patches, secretaries, artists, etc...If you think for a moment at how much each person makes it adds up quickly. They also need to invest in their future so they have money at downtimes. Also as new hardware comes out and games advance servers need to be upgraded. I would agree they are making some money but I do not think it is a huge amount. Plus at $15 a month say you play 1 hr a night that is $0.50 an hour. Most people play more then this. It is not like they are ripping you off.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (1)

VisualStim (130062) | more than 9 years ago | (#11681729)

They have probably around 200 servers.

Where did you pull that number from? Just in the US, there are around 100 game worlds, usually mistakenly called "servers". Each game world is serviced by a cluster of actual server machines. Additionally, several game worlds share access to one of several database servers. I would estimate the actual number of server machines in the 1000+ range.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (1)

C0rinthian (770164) | more than 9 years ago | (#11686605)

There are 88 realms in the US. That's a hell of a lot of hardware. I don't know how many they have in Europe or Asia, but it will probably be comparable.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (0, Troll)

rizzo (21697) | more than 9 years ago | (#11682175)

You'd also need to include the cost of a WinXP license.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (1)

rmccann (792082) | more than 9 years ago | (#11682369)

Or the cedega licence. Friend of mine used to dual boot. Cedega plays WoW for him, so he's ditching windows.

Oh please (0, Flamebait)

M.C. Hampster (541262) | more than 9 years ago | (#11684513)


Well, don't forgot the cost of your computer. And the cost of the electricity you use while playing the game. And, do you drink more Mountain Dew while playing? Add that in too.

Seriously, your comment has to be one of the stupidest I've seen in a long while. Not everything is about Windows and Microsoft.

And BTW: you can play the game on Mac OS X also, so you don't have to have WinXP.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (2, Insightful)

njfuzzy (734116) | more than 9 years ago | (#11681781)

I think you are confused. Businesses are allowed to make a profit. Taking in more than you spend isn't a crime, it's the *point*. You are confusing capitalism with overcharging.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11683649)

Blizzard's cost of "running such a service" is irrelevant. Almost a million people think the price they charge is fair (otherwise they wouldn't have bought it). Why do so many morons think "oh no they're overcharging". WTF? Who cares... this is entertainment, its not like not buying it will cause someone to lose their kidneys.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (4, Interesting)

Psychochild (64124) | more than 9 years ago | (#11683675)

Has Blizzard or any of the other MMORPG guys ever posted the actual cost of running such a service vs. how much money they are taking in on it?

FWIW, I run a smaller online game called Meridian 59 [meridian59.com] . My costs are a bit different since we're a smaller company. I'll talk about that later.

Anyway, you can find a discussion on this topic at http://www.legendmud.org/raph/gaming/busmodels.htm l [legendmud.org] which was written by Raph Koster of UO and SWG fame.

To summarize: Development costs are high, especially for more recent games. WoW and SWG each cost tens of millions of dollars to develop, which is a lot of money in game development. They employed large teams of people, much larger than your typical standalone game charges.

Now, running the game is an ongoing cost. The biggest expenses are bandwidth, network support, and customer service. People get very cranky when they can't log onto the game, and will post mean things if they cannot. (See other posts in this very thread for examples.) Network administrators don't come cheap, and when you're talking about hundreds of machines running these games, you're going to need a large number of these administrators. And for those times when your service is unavailable, you need CS representatives to handle the crushing wave of calls you will undoubtedly get. All this doesn't come cheap. Now figure in the cost of things like development of bug fixes and expanded content (including content you can't just charge for in an expansion), and you have a lot of expenses.

In all honesty, the price paid is probably too low. As someone pointed out, playing 1 hour per day means you're only spending about $.50 per hour to play the game. Compare this to watching a Pay-per-view movie where you'll probably pay $2-3 per hour for that entertainment.

Further, low subscription rates hurt the smaller developers. Meridian 59 is significantly cheaper that other games (only $10.95 per month instead of $15 like other large games) and doesn't charge for expansions. However, we make much, MUCH less money than a large company does and it is harder to maintain and expand the game on that much smaller of a budget. We mostly run M59 as a labor of love, though, so this isn't as big an issue for us. But it's unrealistic to expect an online RPG that is run on centralized servers with as much uptime as possible and that is expanded on a regular basis to be free or even significantly cheaper that current rates.

Some information for you.

Have fun,

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (3, Insightful)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 9 years ago | (#11685705)

How could it possibly be construed as over charging?

They sold over a quarter of a million copies in a day. Things are worth what people will pay for them.

The only way the customers are ripped off is if a monopoly is being abused, or they are fooled.

Blizzard doesn't have exclusive MMORPG rights, and they are being upfront about the costs.

It is not like EA selling shitty football or Sony using their past reputation to trick people.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (1)

MayonakaHa (562348) | more than 9 years ago | (#11686571)

*Applause*

Very well put. People buy what they want, when they want, at a price they think is fair. If Blizzard was overcharging for WoW I don't think over half a million people would have bought it. I've played many an MMO and I can honestly say WoW is one of the best and well worth the price. Especially considering a new game is $50 and I used to buy one every month or so. The first month of WoW was $50 which is normal for a game in my case (I usually don't play them more than a month). After that it's $15 a month to play. Think about it. If WoW is good enough that you want to keep playing it instead of buying a new game, then you can stretch that $50 you would have spent on a new game of the month into three months of enjoyment.

And it's definitely not like paying EA for the same football game on the same console using the same engine just with a few numbers and names changed or Sony selling you a television for $700 when nearly the same exact TV from Toshiba or Panasonic would cost you $400.

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? FB!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11687215)

One pays more for Warcraft in Old Europe! FB!

Re:Overcharging Gamers??? (1)

will_die (586523) | more than 9 years ago | (#11697683)

SOE posted some round about numbers for EQ1. They said it was costing around $30 million a year for all costs(servers, new dev, people,etc). And they were bringing in close to $45 million(subscription, expansion packs, marketing of license,etc).
Some smaller MMORPG said they needed around 70,000 subscribers to make a profit and stick around. So it really depends on what how profitable they are.
As for box costs, you can figure that only around $15 of the $50 box(expansion pack they get less) goes to the development company(the reseller, manufacturer and distributer get the rest) so profit wise it is as if they released a new game every 3-4 months.
However sales of MMORPGs suck, during the same time the WoW has sold less then 1 million world wide, warcraft III had sold close to 8 million.

I'm not surprised. (1)

Surye (580125) | more than 9 years ago | (#11680479)

This is the first game I bought since Diablo 1. And I have no regrets. The monthly cost is more then worth the entertainment I get out of it.

Re:I'm not surprised. (1)

Kris_J (10111) | more than 9 years ago | (#11682846)

Oy, it's a time sink. My initial subscription ran out almost a month ago and I seriously have not had the time to play since. Since it absorbed about 47 days from about day three after retail release (10-day guest pass, 30-day initial subscription and 7-odd days of "free" time due to problems), it's like I'm having to catch up with a month's worth of stuff while the next month's stuff happens at the same time.

It's great fun and I've even got one of those fancy WoW keyboards and the limited edition strategy guide on their way to me, but at the moment I'm not even sure I'll ever have time to play again...

Re:I'm not surprised. (1)

Surye (580125) | more than 9 years ago | (#11683368)

I sleep about 3 fewer hours a night then before. This seems to have worked.

Wow! (no pun intended) (0, Redundant)

kendoka (473386) | more than 9 years ago | (#11680496)

Good for Blizzard! I love playing World of Warcraft... it's the first game I can actually say I've enjoyed playing in years...

It won't last for long... (2, Insightful)

ringbarer (545020) | more than 9 years ago | (#11682457)

I will start this out by saying that if any blizzard fanbois respond to this with a flame...you're just trolling and are even more out of line than you consider me to be.

I will save the whole "my history in mmo's" speech and instead cut to the chase...

I bought WoW about 3 weeks after release expecting to find a game that does what it says: caters to the hardcore and casual gamers equally. I played WoW for about 2 months only to find out that this game caters to one kind of player: non-mmo vets looking to get their feet wet in the genre. Don't argue it...it's dead on spot true.

When I first started playing I noticed how this game had phenomenal graphics (anyone who says otherwise is on crack or blind), awesome characters, an immersive world, and many many many different ways to customize your characters skill/abils as well as equipment.

However, as time marched on I made the following realization about WoW: If I play more than a few hours a day I can ding lvl 60 with virtually NO hold ups. I never have to unlock any zones, never have to do anything in any order.....hell, I don't even have to do a quest to hit the cap. That's not an MMO, that's some kind of RPG/Action hybrid aimed at appealing to what is in fact the average wow gamer: a high school kid who loves the idea of playing an mmo, rotting on the forums etc...but has never succeeded at one before. WoW takes your fifteen bucks and then hands you the key to instant uberness. When I stand around in IronForge I see DOZENS upon DOZENS of people running around at the cap, pissing and moaning about the game being to easy and that they have nothing left to do except retreat old ground. This has got be the first MMO that hit this state in less than 3 months.

Added, that for a game that boasts PVP and BG content as it's selling points, and as the main things that make it "better" than other mmo's, there's really nothing in the way of purposeful pvp and BG's are probably another 6 months away. And 6 months is realistic....blizz has recently stated that they plan on releasing the first expansion roughly 12 months after release. Let's give them the benefit of the doubt and say they release it on time...which would be a first for the genre. That's another 9 months out. Ironically...this week blizz has stated that they feel it would be in the game's best interests to hold out BG until that expansion. So, as you see, my stating of 6 months for battlegrounds isn't even realistic, that's how hopeful it is. 9-12 months is much more realistic. Imagine if this is the way it really pans out...there will be half a million lvl 60's with nothing to do, and nothing to make the GREAT and HARDCORE players stand out in any way shape or form. That's not an MMO.

I understand that you'll point to sales numbers and tell me how wonderful wow is doing...the bottom line is this: It's selling at the rate it is b/c of it's mass appeal. It does something other mmo's have never done, and for the purpose of not ruining the genre like every other gaming genre has had happen to it. It appeals to gamers who really don't belong on an MMO. They want instant gratification, instant uberness, and instant action. Problem with that approach is it always will equal instant burnout within weeks, and at best months.

Purpose of this thread is not to bash wow....to be honest, a part of me is asking for advice on why wow is worth it long term. I own and subscribe to both wow and EQ2 and as of now, I give 100 percent of my time to EQ2 because of the following reasons: I know, that no matter how good I get, or no matter how much progress I make any night...I'm just scratching the surface...no matter WHAT I do. There are so many enemies and so many "goals" that people won't even come across for another two years, that I truly feel that I'm one character, in a whole world of heroes. Also...in EQ2, EVERY (and I mean EVERY) single thing that you do is recorded on the web as YOUR achievement and then ranks you against all those on your server, as well as all those in the WORLD (real world...every gamer who plays EQ2 on earth). I can see how I rank against all others in the world in everything from time played, items discovered, kill/death ration, guild contribution, grouping performance, abilities learned, etc etc etc. Not only that...but every guild is given a "free" (included in subscription) web site and forum. Guilds are also ranked server and world wide...and all of the things I just mentioned are easily viewable and comparable by going to eq2players.com. Everything each individual, as well as each group of players do is broadcast worldwide.

Let me hint on something else: I haven't downloaded a patch or official content update since Christmas in WoW. Why is this? I've had over 30 updates on EQ2. So, if you're looking for content to be added faster than you could POSSIBLY play it, then you do have an alternative out there. Forced Grouping on EQ2? No. It's soloable, it's just done much more logically. Never will a lvl 50 be seen raping through a dungeon in solo, that's recommended for a full party of lvl 20's. Nobody is so powerful that they can literally OWN the world. However, some are so powerful that they own everyone else. Something possible in EQ2, but blizz says is not possible unless you cut out casual appeal.

This genre is not for the casual, nor the impatient. It really isn't for the younger teens, and it's definitely not for the FPS, RTS, or action gamers. It is for fiends who like to grind away and quest away for years with the goal of creating a truly sick, sick character.

Blizzard has appealed to the style of gamer that hardcore mmo players (in their 20's and 30's and up...since we were creating the genre when today's teens didn't even know how to read yet) don't want in their games. They have given you instant gratification b/c they knew this is what you want. That my friends, is not the concept of an MMO...and if you need any proof of what I'm saying just compare the EQ2 forums with the WoW forums and see how many people in EQ complain of "nothing to do" at the lvl cap...if you can even find someone at the lvl cap.

As for anyone who chooses to keep this logical...and as I've said I love WoW, is there any saving grace for me in the future? Anything other than the bs promise of battlegrounds and honor ranks that will make this game stand the test of time? (already having problems with it...lvl 60's are leaving in unison). After 8 months of someone playing 20 hours a day will they have anything to show for it other than being a lvl 60 alongside the kid who played 4 hours a week? As of right now I just get the answers of "no no no " to all of these questions....

Maybe someone else knows something I don't about the future of this game...

I also apologize if you feel "threatened" by my statements or if you find them offensive. WoW and EQ2 are both two of the best games to ever grace this genre...they are also the future of it. However, when I look into my crystal ball, I see a gradual process of non true mmo players all packed on wow, while the old school hardcore powergamers are all grinding away for loot in groups on EQ2. I'm actually watching it presently (forget the ball) as every night more and more ex wow players are popping up on EQ2 servers and citing the EXACT same issues/concerns I just did as their reasoning for switching over.

I will add one more time...I am both a wow gamer, as well as an EQ2 gamer.

Anyone else having this split like me? And anyone else feeling the same things I am about the future of wow?

p.s. The mountain of disgusting, biased Blizzard fanbois who will not hear ANYTHING needs to be improved on their game...need not apply on this one. However, they can keep in mind that it's their first taste of an MMO as well as blizz's. Their plans to "take over the genre" are really plans to cut the genre down to it's roots, and rebuild it , so far as even retargeting a different group.

Re:It won't last for long... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11683701)

Its too bad you littered what appeared to be a rational posts with paranoid delusions of fanboys coming down and attacking you from all sides.

1. Yes, getting from 1 - 60 in WOW is easy. It is also not particularly time consuming.

BUT, I dont think blizzard wants that to be the "hard part" of the game.

2. Post 60, there are things which are leaps and bounds harder than just getting to 60. Onxyia? Molten Core? Raid instances --designed to take 6+ hours, 40 people, and at least one of them requires you to complete a lengthy and difficult quest series from other smaller end game instances. By no means "Casual friendly".

I agree, there really isnt much to do besides level an alt to 60 and start over again. But seriously, the end game stuff will probably take you longer to do then getting to 60.

Re:It won't last for long... (1)

kendoka (473386) | more than 9 years ago | (#11685502)

lol, dude, chill out - all I'm saying is I think it's a really great game. I guess I'm just a coder/unix nerd because I don't play games often and I don't run with the I need the latest graphics card crowd. All I'm saying is, it's a great game 'cause even old Apple II farts like me are playing it.

It sounds like you're really familiar with this game, 'cause I don't even understand what in the hell you're talking about.

Are most /.tters these days gamers?

One MEELION players (1)

white1827 (848173) | more than 9 years ago | (#11680503)

This means that they have sold over 1,000,000 boxes in North America and European releases so far. World of Warcraft has single handedly proved that the MMO market is by no means saturated.

Re:One MEELION players (2, Informative)

tillerman35 (763054) | more than 9 years ago | (#11681777)

Saturated? Hmmmph! I'm still stuck playing EQ2 because I can't buy a copy of Wow. I had one literally taken out of my hands by a mom at Target the other day with nothing more than a "if you're not going to buy that, my son wants it for his birthday." I seriously considered summoning a L23 Security Wight. The only thing that stopped me was the fact that I knew they're not accepting new subscribers until they get their hardware issues ironed out. Happy birthday, Junior!

Re:One MEELION players (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11689928)

That's odd. Myself and 4 of my friends just bought and added new subscriptions. That mom ripped you off.

If you really want a copy, check Ebgames.com, blizzard.com, and amazon.com a few times a day. Eventually one of those sites will get it in stock.

Re:One MEELION players (1)

ZephyrXero (750822) | more than 9 years ago | (#11683388)

So, by that estimate that's $50,000,000 just from game sales (not even taking into account the limited edition $80 ones)...and then that's a steady $13,000,000 a month...or 195 million a year if they're all playing. So, in theory, if they sold a million copies, and everyone played for a year that would be almost 250 million dollars!!! That's a whole lot of money I'd say.... and last time I checked I don't think there's ever been a game that cost over even 10 million to make, and I seriously doubt their servers/bandwidth even costs a million a month...
(see above post*)

Europe underestimated...again (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11680652)

Most companies think of Europe being "just some" market after the US and Asia.

However, considering many customers hence feel like "second rate", many don't fall for the products.

Now a good one comes here, not looking like a "cheap" European version of some game (like Mythic -> GOA DAoC), and people are surprised ...

Thinking seems to be harder than I though.

Re:Europe underestimated...again (1)

AHumbleOpinion (546848) | more than 9 years ago | (#11686421)

Most companies think of Europe being "just some" market after the US and Asia.

One would hope that Vivendi, the French owner of Blizzard, would not think that way. ;-)

WoW is facing serious problems in Europe now... (4, Insightful)

zyzko (6739) | more than 9 years ago | (#11681774)

It's great to see WoW being such a great success also in Europe, however Blizzard should really do something about their servers.

Right now logging in is impossible to many European servers (just check the EU tech support forums...) and people have been experiencing disconnects and signup-problems from day one not to mention the huge queues on some servers.

The ridiciously short beta and the problems they had in the US should have warranted a more thorough analysis about what is required to serve the big audience. For a subscription (time) -based game this is quite unacceptable.

-Kari

Re:WoW is facing serious problems in Europe now... (3, Insightful)

Shazow (263582) | more than 9 years ago | (#11681902)

I'm sure they'll append additional playtime to all those who suffer from downtime. They did that for the US server users.

But yes, they should have learned from their mistake... But I can imagine their thought process.

"Wow, we did amazingly well in North American, it blew our servers out!"
"Yeah... let's hope we do half as well in Europe" ...
"Holy crap, we did even BETTER in Europe... That was unexpected *servers go boom*"

Re:WoW is facing serious problems in Europe now... (1)

DerWulf (782458) | more than 9 years ago | (#11687639)

Not to forget that stupid users bring this on themselves when they absolutly MUST join high population servers. I still remember the hype 'the inwow server is the best'. Well, I am not so sure people still think that way. The sad truth is: There are enough servers. But as in the US, some have almost no population while others are constantly maxed out.

Re:WoW is facing serious problems in Europe now... (1)

floyd59 (861712) | more than 9 years ago | (#11744470)

I bought it on 17.Feb, an have not had a single problem with it. Neither with registration, nor with running the game. With most games, i tend to have problems till the first patch is out, but not this one. Nice job!

Apart from that, the game experience is simply amazing, a so i think i'll move away from diablo2 after several years...

Ob. Strongbad (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11681898)

According to figures released by the developer, the subscription-based MMORPG sold more than 280,000 units on day one - more than it sold on its first day in the States - before sales rose to 380,000 by the end of its first weekend on sale.

That is not a small number! That is a really big number!
Flagrant premature rollout error
WOW Over = Very Yes.

Re:Ob. Strongbad (1)

carninja (792514) | more than 9 years ago | (#11686446)

COMPYYYYY!!!!!

Sounds like they are making too much money (2, Interesting)

tod_miller (792541) | more than 9 years ago | (#11682623)

I am glad I didn't buy this only to find I couldn't log in.

I do see these are historical games... in the future such server issues will go, so enjoy the stories of server outtages and record sales, before this becomes just another command and conquer or doom gaming fad, and becomes old news.

I personally like the genre, but do not play games. I think it is important to keep up with the field though, so I regularly read up on them.

You'd think... (0, Redundant)

C.Maggard (635855) | more than 9 years ago | (#11682810)

...that they'd have learned from their American launch.

WoW experiences (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11687118)

I bought WoW last Friday, when it launched here in the UK. Experiences so far, despite what I've seen posted here in this thread and on the Blizzard forums, have been generally positive.

When I get home from work at 5:30PM on Friday and install the game, the registration servers are down. I'd kind of expected this - pretty much an inevitable hazard of buying the game on the first day of its release. Fortunately, I play FFXI, and KOTOR 2 had also come out that day (and yes, I wound up buying that as well), so I had plenty more to keep me entertained until they fixed the reg servers and I didn't have to sit there hitting "refresh" like a muppet and no doubt making the problem just a little bit worse.

The registration servers come back up at about 10:30PM, about an hour before my usual bed-time. The registration process himself was a bit crap; a lot of pages to click through, which are, pretty much inevitably, very, very slow. To make matters worse, there's a time-limit on the whole process which, if exceeded, means you have to start again from the beginning. With the pages taking so long to load, it takes me about 4 or 5 goes to actually register. To add insult to injury, Blizzard have one of those annoying "text in image" things that you have to fill in to register. This is on the same page that you have to enter your VALID CD KEY on. Were Blizzard worried that people were going to buy dozens of copies of the game and make automated scripts to register them all? Oh, the horror, the horror.

On reflection, I guess I'd have been better waiting for Saturday morning to do the whole registration process.

Once I've created the account, logging in to the game and setting up a character is pretty much flawless. I guess most other people are still stuck at the registration page by this point (11PM Friday). Once I get into the game, the newbie zone I spawn in is highly congested - it's a bit of a race to pull mobs to fight. Of course, this is something else I was fully expecting and I can't really complain. The problem continued over the weekend but it's alleviated slightly now that I've moved away from the newbie zones. I've not experienced ANY problems logging into my server and pings have been generally ok, even in the big towns. I guess this is because I didn't have any particular preference over which server I wanted to play on and was able to take the under-loaded server that the auto-select function recommened. I'd advise any other new players to do the same.

And how good is the game? Well... it's ok. It's not going to draw me away from FFXI in the long run, though. Don't get me wrong, there are a lot of things that WoW does that I really wish FFXI did. The ability to gain experience and levels through doing quests is perhaps the biggest plus point. However, the game's infrastructure seems, in many ways, vastly inferior to FFXI's. The search and trading functions, such as they are, can barely even be described as adequate. I'm also really not a fan of the way you can just keep on soloing, even at the higher levels. It'll be a fun occasional distraction from FFXI, but won't hold my attention for too long.

Re:WoW experiences (2, Insightful)

shepuk (588339) | more than 9 years ago | (#11688091)

> Were Blizzard worried that people were going to
> buy dozens of copies of the game and make automated
> scripts to register them all? Oh, the horror, the horror.

More likely they were worried that people would make automated scripts to brute-force themselves a valid retail code... in which case, smart move by blizzard, imho.

Population (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11687421)

Well. A lot more people live in Europe than in the USA, so that it sells more in absolute numbers doesn't seem very surprising.
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