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World of Warcraft Now Has 11.5 Million Subscribers, Lich King Sells 4M in First Month

Blizzard's World of Warcraft is now more popular than ever, as the developer announced today that the MMO, launched in 2004, now has over 11.5 million subscribers worldwide.

As of October 28, the popular fantasy game had 11 million subscribers worldwide. Blizzard cited the November 13th arrival of Wrath of the Lich King, the game's second expansion pack, as a factor in the recent growth--Lich King sold 2.8 million copies on its first day at stores, with Blizzard dubbing it "the fastest-selling PC game of all time."

Since its debut, Lich King has continued to top the PC sales charts, with Blizzard today noting that the expansion sold over 4 million copies during its first month at retailers.

"The base World of Warcraft game and the World of Warcraft Battle Chest are performing better than last year," noted GameStop VP Bob McKenzie. "That type of traction is very impressive for a game that is going into its fifth holiday season and speaks to the enthusiastic player base Blizzard Entertainment products have."

World of Warcraft's Subscriber Definition
World of Warcraft subscribers include individuals who have paid a subscription fee or have an active prepaid card to play World of Warcraft, as well as those who have purchased the game and are within their free month of access. Internet Game Room players who have accessed the game over the last thirty days are also counted as subscribers. The above definition excludes all players under free promotional subscriptions, expired or cancelled subscriptions, and expired prepaid cards. Subscribers in licensees' territories are defined along the same rules.

Chris Faylor was previously a games journalist creating content at Shacknews.

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From The Chatty
  • reply
    December 23, 2008 7:43 AM

    So now it's news when WoW gains .5 mil? Honestly you couldn't just wait a few more months until it hits 12m?

    • reply
      December 23, 2008 7:47 AM

      It is news when it's just before a holiday. 'Get our name in the press and make more people play over the next week or two!'

      • reply
        December 23, 2008 7:59 AM

        Does Blizzard need more press about this? I mean...... really. People who have never played MMO's before have heard about WoW. We don't need an update everytime WoW gets another 10 customers. Come on Shack, why not start posting about stuff other than WoW, L4D, and Mirrors Edge?

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          December 23, 2008 8:09 AM

          Have you read the last day's news? I don't think Left4Dead was mentioned at all....

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            December 23, 2008 8:16 AM

            I read the Shack daily. If you'll notice I never said "I hate how Shack has posted so much about L4D in the last <insert time frame>". I'm saying we don't need to hear every tiny detail about titles that already are bleeding with press. To respond to losimagic below this one, I don't want Shack to start making up news. Get as sarcastic as you wish to, but there is plenty of gaming news out there that doesn't revolve around the same titles over and over and over again. Some of the games I play are really good games that never get mentioned on this site, yet they seem to make plenty of room to post "news" about the same games over and over. I'm asking for more diversity.

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              December 23, 2008 8:46 AM

              Which games? I'm always ready to hear about new games or games I've heard of but have never played.

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                December 23, 2008 8:53 AM

                I'll take one for example. I play Lord of the Rings Online. It has been mentioned before on this site, yes, but only with major updates. We recently got a patch that fixed a bunch of issues but I don't remember seeing it at all on Shacknews. Was I broken hearted? Of course not. But it does kind of suck to not see any news about it yet to hear about every tiny patch that WoW gets, as well as to see the patchnotes duplicated on here.

                My point is not to argue one game. I'm not here to promote that game. My purpose in bringing this up is that I KNOW there have to be more games out there that deserve some credit on this site. I would rather see news articles about games I've never heard of or played as opposed to a dozen articles on the same games over and over. That's all I meant.

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                  December 23, 2008 9:01 AM

                  You know for a second there I really thought you were being genuine. I thought you were talking about small or independently developed games. LOTR is what you want to hear more about.....? Jesus, Mary and Joseph. I'm going back to sleep.

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                  December 23, 2008 9:11 AM

                  easy, WOW > LOTR:Online. How many subscribers does LOTR have? Exactly, there are more people who care about LOTR than WOW. Take a statistics class someday...

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                    December 23, 2008 9:15 AM

                    Re-read my message, genius. I said I was using it as an example. I'm sure you can't see the forest for the trees.

                    Do you really think that all the WoW players who read this site care that another half million people subscribed? If so then I hope it makes your ePeen all tingly and juicy. If it was a matter of posting actual news like patches and stuff then fine - that's good gaming news. Hearing about every time WoW gains another 10 people can't be something that the majority of WoW players care about. If it is, then you guys certainly live up to the stereotype you've made for yourself.

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                      December 23, 2008 9:25 AM

                      10 people is different than 500,000. Think of it this way: WoW gained more subscribers in the past 2 months than LOTRO has altogether. It's worth mentioning...

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                        December 23, 2008 9:42 AM

                        I certainly agree with your stat that WoW gained more people that LOTRO has altogether. My point is..... how many times do we need to hear about it? First it was every million, now it's every half million that we hear about WoW subscriber numbers. I'm very happy for Blizzard's success, don't get my wrong. I'm just saying that there are better things that can be covered on a news site.

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                          December 23, 2008 9:52 AM

                          That was my point, WOW's numbers increase more than the total numbers of another game. So yes, I'd to like to know. I'd like to know that the world's most popular MMO is still the world's most popular MMO. But I don't see this posting taking away from all that great news that they decided to NOT post.

                          So my question is, what news? What is better than is not covered? Are we missing out on something? Also, try not to exaggerate when attempting to make a point, it doesn't do much for your credibility. 10 != 500K . But honestly, I was kinda in agreement with Sabin, might as well wait till it hits 12mil, because for WOW those numbers are easy, for any other game, those numbers are a pipe dream. But then you realize it's the holiday season and days before xmas....

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              December 23, 2008 8:56 AM

              Look homie what you need to do is stop bitching about small shit like this and if you have something to add to the site they why don't you contact an admin about it. It's not unheard of you know.

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                December 23, 2008 9:00 AM

                Sorry G dawg. I hope my mad skillz of reasoning and using big words didn't break bad on your mad rhymes.

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                  December 23, 2008 9:02 AM

                  I suppose if your idea of a big word is "The" then yes you were using big words. Look at the big brain on you. Good boy, your such a good boy.

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                    December 23, 2008 9:08 AM

                    I figured anything higher than "homie" probably threw you off. If you've got something useful to contribute to my opinion I'd love to hear it. However, telling me to stop bitching after calling me a "homie" just makes you look stupid. So tell me, what is your opposition to hearing more about other games? Clearly you must see something wrong with it or else you wouldn't have taken time out of your super busy schedule to call me a homie.

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                      December 23, 2008 9:43 AM

                      For one thing, who said I wasn't stupid? Secondly no one wants to hear about how you think blizzard is getting too much attention, only you and three other people care about that. Third next time you don't want to read something on the shack. Simply don't read it. It's hard not to thread shit, I know this personally but it is possible. Fourth If there really are games that the shack doesn't know about then why don't you show them up and make some informative posts about specific games that are coming out.

                      And by the way I wear a special sideways cap that covers my ear, it costs more than a regular cap, but I think it's worth it, and I call everyone homie, Homie!

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          December 23, 2008 8:10 AM

          Yes, come on Shacknews, stop posting news and make stuff up to fill in the gaps!

    • reply
      December 23, 2008 9:07 AM

      It's news when no other MMO can do numbers like half a mil total, and WOW increases by that. I hope you aren't among the type of people who complain about a free blow job because the chic has bad breath.

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        December 23, 2008 9:19 AM

        As long as there's a shower handy. Don't wanna walk around with skunk-cock for the rest of the day.

        • reply
          December 23, 2008 9:54 AM

          Haha, you made me LOL at work, and my office is QUIET...

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