2m leave World of Warcraft in one year

The number of World of Warcraft subscribers has fallen from over 12m to 10.3m in one year.

Yesterday Blizzard announced that 800,000 players left the PC MMO between July and September.

During October last year the game reached a peak with over 12m users. Earlier this year that figure fell to 11.4m, and between May and July this dropped further to 11.1m.

Considering the latest numbers, this means almost 2m subscribers have left World of Warcraft in the past 12 months.

Blizzard’s CEO Mike Morhaime revealed the latest numbers in a conference call, reports Gamasutra.

He said the decline came primarily from the East. However, he described World of Warcraft as "one of the most popular online games in China, and by far the most popular subscription-based MMO in the world."

"That said, we know there are improvements that we can make in game content,” he added.

Blizzard will launch a content update pack in the next few weeks.

"[This is] really not intended to go out and drive new user acquisition, that’s a whole other strategy,” said Morhaime. But it does drive engagement with the game, and so that will impact churn if we do it successfully, and will eventually drive winback, as players tell each other about the content they’re enjoying."

Blizzard recently announced a fourth expansion pack for World of Warcraft, titled Mists of Pandaria.

The developer-publisher charges users between 7.69 and 8.99 per month to play the game beyond level 20. Gamers who keep their characters under level 20 can play for free.

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