Blizzard Entertainment announced today that World of Warcraft, its subscription-based massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG), is now played by more than 10 million gamers around the world.
That’s a full one million more than the number of monthly players World of Warcraft had back in July 2007 six months ago. And all this before the release of the World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade expansion pack in mainland China, which Blizzard expects to give a huge increase in gold farmers, no wait they didn’t say that, they said an increase in new and returning subscribers.
It’s interesting to note that if the World of Warcraft were a nation, CIA’s World Factbook says that out of 237 listed countries it would be the 82nd most populated country on Earth above Hungary, but behind Serbia.
World of Warcraft now hosts more than 2 million subscribers in Europe, more than 2.5 million in North America, and approximately 5.5 million in Asia.
“It’s very gratifying to see gamers around the world continuing to show such enthusiasm and support for World of Warcraft,” said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. “We’re always pleased to welcome new players to the game, and we’re looking forward to sharing the next major content update with the entire community in the months ahead.”
Since debuting in North America on November 23, 2004, World of Warcraft has become the most popular MMORPG around the world. It was the bestselling PC game of 2005 and 2006 worldwide, and finished behind only World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade, the first expansion pack for the game, in 2007. In addition to being the bestselling PC game of 2007 in both North America and Europe, The Burning Crusade holds the record for fastest-selling PC game of all time, with nearly 2.4 million copies sold in its first 24 hours of availability and approximately 3.5 million in its first month. Development is underway on World of Warcraft’s second expansion, Wrath of the Lich King, which was unveiled at the company’s BlizzCon gaming festival in August 2007.
Please note: These subscriber numbers are not for all-time, but they are in fact monthly active subscribers. Blizzard‘s World of Warcraft Subscriber Definition reads:
“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.”