Showing posts with label Is World of Warcraft Fun?. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Is World of Warcraft Fun?. Show all posts

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Is WoW Dying?

Is Wow dying?
    This is a good question to be asking at this stage in the life cycle of World of Warcraft. This post was brought upon by two factors. Factor one is the recent price drop in moving characters from one realm to another. The other factor is the disturbing fact that if you type "is wow" into a google search box, you get something similar to the following search suggestions.
Is wow dying?
Is wow fun?
Is wow free to play? 
    From the above results, it's easy to conclude that you have basically three categories of people who are interested in World of Warcraft at this point. Those who have played it but are not currently subscribed; those who are playing currently and are concerned with the state of the game; and finally those who have been able to resist the games "Siren" call thus far and want a little more information.
If it is dying then why?
    Another good question. But where do we start to try to discern a primary reason? Chances are, multiple factors contribute to the report that World of Warcraft lost 1.3 million subscriber in a three month period. This is pretty significant considering they have lost four million subscribers since 2010, during which time they went from 12 million to 8 million subscribers.
    The following reasons why they could have lost so many subscribers, at least from my own perspective of one of those players who are currently trying to decide if I want to continue playing are as follows.
 1. The game has been out a very long time. 
    It's hard to remember the world without Wow. It came out in November of 2004. I'd be willing to bet that most of the people who left are just tired of the game. It's just like eating ice cream. No matter how good ice cream is, the more ice cream you eat, the less you are going to like it. I myself have been sick of the game at least half a dozen times and walked away for extended breaks only to come back with the release of a new expansion.
    What is causing people to become tired of playing the game in the first place? In my talks with other players, especially those who have drastically decreased their playing time or flat out retired from the game, they have given the following reasons.
  • Tired of grinding daily quests
  • Wiping on the same boss and seeing no improvement after several months
  • There is no clear cut direction to the game as it stands. There is simply so much that can be done in the game that some people have a hard time getting anything done at all. It's like turning a child lose in a yard filled with hundreds of toys. The result is very little focus on any one toy, instead it's a frantic run to play with every single toy a little, then moving on to the next one as fast as possible. This would explain the discrepancy in the gear score of one raider over the other.
  • Looking for Raid is not an option for some people.
  • Real life gets in the way.
    You have to pay fifteen dollars a month to play. This one wouldn't seem to need an explanation at first thought, but if you dig a little deeper, the cost of the monthly subscription isn't the only monetary factor. If someone is playing on a dead or imbalanced faction ratio server, there are costs associated with moving all those characters to a server with a higher population. After all, if people are going to play, it's always nice to have others to actually play with. Since most people can scarcely afford the twenty-five dollars for one toon transfer, the thought of leaving all those precious 90's on the dead server is a little hard to bear. I myself have four level 90's on dead servers.
3. Free to play games.
    Free to play games are pretty much everywhere you look now. In theory, these games are designed to be completely free to play. Any one of these games alone don't stand a chance against World of Warcraft, but consider this. On the website there are currently ten pages full of top free mmos. Each one of these games, while not being able to go head to head with the big fish, are instead all taking little bites out of World of Warcraft. Some of these are on pace to take more than a little bite out of the reigning mmo champ. Some of the games that are drawing a lot of interest are:
  • Neverwinter
  • Star Wars The Old Republic (newly free to play)
  • Dragon's Prophet (from the makers of  Runes of Magic)
  • Rift (Now free to play)
  • Elder Scrolls Online (due out Q2 2014)
My opinion
   World of Warcraft is still the king of all mmo's but it's losing ground. They are doing everything they can to stem the tide of the mass exodus by reducing the price of transferring to another server by half (for one week only). There are rumors of many more positive changes rumored to be in the works from the developers and I'll do my best to keep you guys updated on them as they become official.