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Reader Comments (21)

Posted: Aug 19th 2008 7:23PM (Unverified) said

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The only thing that will kill WoW, is WoW.

Posted: Aug 19th 2008 7:33PM animagnum said

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MMO developers certainly shouldn't ignore World of Warcraft, but it might be a good idea to look for ways to bring in new players rather than try to siphon players from another game. If you look at Free Realms, for instance, it is still a fantasy-based MMO, but it is aimed at a different crowd.

Posted: Aug 19th 2008 7:47PM druzeltheimp said

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It’s inevitable that people will get tired with one game and move on to another, so eventually there will come a point where wow is no longer the biggest and most popular mmo on the market. The biggest problem I see with the current state of the industry is that developers are putting out the same game over and over with slight variations of the basic theme instead of pushing the genre forward into new, creative directions.

The similarities between WAR and AOC when compared to WOW are undeniable. We could make the same argument that WOW is just another variation on EQ I suppose. However, what Blizzard did was to perfect the whole grind-style mmo and make it approachable to everyone. Ultimately, I think that developers who try to emulate wows success will never be the fabled “wow killer.” Simply put, you can’t out-wow wow.

I’m confident that the next big MMO be something completely different than the basic spawn camping, level grinding, target and hit buttons, static world mmo that most people are familiar with today.

Posted: Aug 20th 2008 12:29PM (Unverified) said

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I kind of agree, but your response implies that WoW is even on the same playing field as these other games.

Nothing will ever come close to WoW's numbers as long as Blizzard continues to pour resources into it and update content. It's too well polished, well done, and accessible. They are on a totally different level from the rest of the MMO market, and it's really too late for any new game to steal any meaningful # of subs from them. If WoW was never released in the first place, the top games would still be lingering in the 1-2 million subscriber range, nowhere near the 10 million WoW has.

Even if a game comes out that does improve on WoW in every way, all new games are unpolished and bug filled, that's just how it is. Because of this, most players will return to WoW rather than go through the growing pains each new MMO goes through until it's as polished and shiny as WoW already is.

So yeah, until Blizz abandons WoW it's futile to try and capture the market. Based on what I see from other recent MMOs, I think that if Blizz turned off the servers tomorrow, most players would quit the genre instead of transfer to the other options.
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Posted: Aug 19th 2008 7:48PM wjowski said

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Maybe if MMO developers focused more on releasing finished, polished games instead of obessing over being 'The WoW Killer' maybe the genre wouldn't be in it's current, sorry state of being completely dominated by a single game with a bunch of pale, poorly-constructed imitators following closely behind.

Posted: Aug 19th 2008 7:59PM TwistedBishop said

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It's the media who obsess over a "WoW killer".
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Posted: Aug 19th 2008 7:53PM (Unverified) said

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Technology moves on and WoW will inevitably lose its crown. My guess is that Blizzard will release their next-gen MMO before that happens and what we will see is a gradual shift of players from one Blizzard game to the next. Games like WAR will undoubtedly steal some customers from WoW, but in the millions... highly unlikely.

Posted: Aug 19th 2008 7:54PM TwistedBishop said

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No, we'll never see a game beat WoW's subscription numbers. It has actually taken on a sort of gravity, yanking players back into subscriptions through chains of friends or relatives. Everyone can run it, everyone can play it, and everyone knows SOMEONE playing it currently.

So sure, you can go play the new MMO. Maybe you can even persuade some friends to cancel WoW and try it with you. But you'll leave people in WoW -- ones who either won't switch or can't. That new game will be good or bad or the same. If it's bad, you'll go back to your friends. If it's the same, you'll go back to your friends. If it's actually good and appeals to everyone you switched over to it with....well, you'll want to spend time with your old friends now and then. You'll be back. Not permanently, maybe only a month here or there, maybe only at expansion time, but still...you'll go back.

WoW is the crossroads of the MMO world.

Posted: Aug 19th 2008 8:06PM (Unverified) said

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I would say that no game will out-WoW WoW. Like a comment above, Blizzard perfected that formula and just has the legions of followers. No significant number of them will ever wander away for a game that still fits the same formula. But there are other formulas yet to be discovered and a MUCH wider audience (that is continuously growing) to tap into. When a game does that, it will beat WoW, but it will be a different game.

A Led Zeppelin MMO!

Posted: Aug 19th 2008 8:13PM (Unverified) said

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I just realized that the question was SHOULD, not WILL.

YES! The games should continue to evolve and become many times more fun than WoW ever is/was.

If WoW is still the best game in town in 10 years, I'm going to be very sad about the state of things.
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Posted: Aug 19th 2008 10:45PM (Unverified) said

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dont worry wow is killing it self if the right times come. you know, kids crow up - and kids tend to outgrow toys.

Posted: Aug 22nd 2008 6:43PM wjowski said

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If that was true the entire video game market'd be dead.
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Posted: Aug 20th 2008 12:01AM Nmaster64 said

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"World of Warcraft says: You are a schlub who has nothing better to do than sit around performing repetitive, mindless actions. Skill and shrewdness do not count for much; what matters is how much time you sink in. You don’t need to do anything exceptional, because to feel good you just need to run the treadmill like everyone else."

- Jonathon Blow, Creator of Braid

Posted: Aug 20th 2008 8:37AM (Unverified) said

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WHO!
FREAKIN!
CARES!
I'm so sick of every game being compared to WoW. WoW did a fantastic job at what it did. Now, developers just need to create a good game, and release it w/ as little problems as possible. WoW, and the players that love it, will always be around. Inovation will strive, and regardless of how long it takes, it's innevitable. No one stays on top forever. Ask Rome.

Posted: Aug 20th 2008 9:29AM (Unverified) said

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I agree. I've played many MMOs that are good in their own right. I think trying to "kill" a competitor only leads to their own downfall.
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Posted: Aug 20th 2008 12:38PM (Unverified) said

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I kind of agree, but your response implies that WoW is even on the same playing field as these other games.

Nothing will ever come close to WoW's numbers as long as Blizzard continues to pour resources into it and update content. It's too well polished, well done, and accessible. They are on a totally different level from the rest of the MMO market, and it's really too late for any new game to steal any meaningful # of subs from them. If WoW was never released in the first place, the top games would still be lingering in the 1-2 million subscriber range, nowhere near the 10 million WoW has.

Even if a game comes out that does improve on WoW in every way, all new games are unpolished and bug filled, that's just how it is. Because of this, most players will return to WoW rather than go through the growing pains each new MMO goes through until it's as polished and shiny as WoW already is.

So yeah, until Blizz abandons WoW it's futile to try and capture the market. Based on what I see from other recent MMOs, I think that if Blizz turned off the servers tomorrow, most players would quit the genre instead of transfer to the other options.

Posted: Aug 20th 2008 8:48PM cray said

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Game makers should definitely make games they think can be a better alternative to World of Warcraft. At the same token they must not assume their game will be the one to kill World of Warcraft.

Its all about balance, knowing how similar and how different they can make their MMO. It will be what's different that will separate it from the other MMOs. So whatever difference it has it must be well executed for it to have any relevancy.

Posted: Aug 21st 2008 10:29AM (Unverified) said

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People left for AoC because it was new, different, and people knew there wasn't going to be anything tossed into WoW before WotLK. I guarantee you will see a giant portion of those people that did not come back to WoW after AoC returning for the expansion, especially seeing as most of them aren't even playing Conan anymore.

As for WAR I totally agree, I haven't seen anything glaring about it yet from beta testers and I think it's on the right track to grab lots of subscribers. 10 million? Absolutly not, but you don't need that many to be a success.
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Posted: Aug 20th 2008 10:26PM (Unverified) said

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Well... yes, there should be. But people use the word "killer" when they should be using the word "competition".

WoW has for too long now dominated the fantasy MMO market. Blizzard has been complacent. They have been slow to release expansions, slow to add content, slow slow slow. They have not, in many cases, provided very good customer service. Being a virtual monopoly breeds contempt for the customer. Over the last 3 years their attitude has largely been "this is the way it is, you will like it".

I think AoC was a bit of a shock to them. It's a badly done game, really; and yet of the WoW players who tried it, only 40% returned to WoW. That means 60% saw fit to stay with a badly damaged competitor's product. It was only after AoC bombed, yet they did not retrieve a majority of their customers, that they really started trying to put a lot of "fixes" into WotLK.

By July, more and more press was leaking out about WAR. I suspect by then that multiple Blizzard insiders likely managed to get into the WAR beta too - don't you think for a moment there's not espionage going on. Blizzard realized that if a crappy game like AoC could steal accounts away, a better done game like WAR would actually hurt them in the West.

Remember, the majority of Blizzard's 10 million accounts are in the East. North America, Oceania, and Europe account for less than 5 million. North America, Oceania, and Western Europe is WAR's target market at this time.

If WAR comes up with 1 million or 2 million accounts, you can bet that some significant percentage of those left WoW. There will be some WAR tabletop devotees who play WAR Online, sure. But most who join it will be people who already played an MMO - likely WoW.

Does Mythic have it within their power to take 25-50% of Blizzard's US/Oceania/Western European market away?

Hell yes.

Posted: Aug 24th 2008 4:13PM masterinsan0 said

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Right...we all know John Blow is the ultimate authority on video games since he made that one XBLA game. If he says WoW is for repetitive-grinding losers, then it must be so.

I feel about the same about WoW, honestly, but I don't feel the need to parrot someone else's ideals. Instead of quoting someone next time, try presenting your own opinion.
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