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Reader Comments (19)

Posted: Mar 21st 2012 9:42AM Deadalon said

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And thats how they are gonna hold up the 12 million player base overall... even tho the game is fast sinking in US and EU.

Smart move? Not really. It would have been smarter to actually maintain a steady flow of game content in Cata over the past 2 years. Cause there is a reason why ppl are qutting. Blizzard just refuses to face the reason why.

Posted: Mar 21st 2012 9:46AM Lenn said

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@Deadalon I don't think they care much where the money is coming from.
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 9:56AM (Unverified) said

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@Lenn

They don't pay subs in China
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 10:01AM Lenn said

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@(Unverified) So, it's free to play then?
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 10:10AM AlienFanatic said

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@Lenn

No, it's my understanding that Chinese players will pay for cards that hold a given number of minutes. They then use these minutes to play the game. I don't know how Blizzard counts these subscribers, myself. If they're considered "subscribers" then that is a very loose use of the term. Frankly, I'm sure a lot of EU and American players would prefer this method, too, because they could then pay something approximating how little they play.
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 10:13AM Lenn said

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@AlienFanatic The point is, the Chinese are paying, just like the WoWers in the west.
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 10:38AM hami83 said

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@Lenn Yeah but it's trickier because it's not a flat $15/month subscription.
Some pay more, some pay less, a lot less.

It screws with Blizzards sub numbers, course then again, EVERY MMO company plays with the sub numbers to make them look as good as possible.
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 3:53PM Space Cobra said

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@AlienFanatic

I may need to research this and see how it works. I think it's more akin to going to an Internet cafe and paying for time used through the cafe; the cafe buys the "time" from a "service" or "wholesaler".

I think this fills a "penny-pinching need" among certain Asians and what used to be, Americans to.

(I need to explain).... "Back in the day", most things you did online was charged by the hour. Things added up for those who really really really liked a certain game. Some companies did charage a basic flat-rate, but you still needed to pay hourly online connection fees.

Roughly, in that "murky time", between "NeverWinter Nights" coming to AOL and UO/EQ debuting, I remember a contingent of players balking at the idea of subscription fees. I think games tended to be about $30 US (a month) on average, but a very few were over that mark. Gamers (in America) were weighing in on things like, "Unused time" and "getting your money's worth". Basically, "Paying only what you used" was a popular notion because why pay for time you are not logged in?

I think some of that mind-set may be considered by some Asians, given their "work-ethic" and their culture. It is sensible to only pay what you use. To have a subscription, especially if you do not use everything, is "wasting money". The consumers look out for themselves, not necessarily to throw money at a company to support it. At least, that is the common notion their (barring the young and particular rabid fans). It just makes sense in that regard.

Also, someone mentioned that going to an internet cafe is a more social activity than Americans that prefer to stay at home and play from their computers. I do think this is true and an allure, but I also think there is a need to play away from the home, especially if your family, like your Mother and Father still live their (it is not considered a stigma in Asia to still be living with and taking care of your parents as it is in America). Being typical "parents", even if you are an adult/grown and may even have your own family, you gotta respect them and that older generation has dim views on online frivolous gaming, so it's best to do it out-of-sight of them, as with other things (love hotels). Also, if a sub bill comes up, it is easier to hide/talk away something you pay for by the minute/hour than such a "big expense" (or more precisely, the money could go elsewhere and even your wife may jump on you if she feels the family can better spend the money elsewhere or your time is needed elsewhere...in some cases I know about).
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 10:13AM dudes said

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Shocking what with Mists of Pandaria being released.. I'd have thought the Chinese would hate it *joke*

Posted: Mar 21st 2012 10:28AM (Unverified) said

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@dudes
I do, but who am I. The next expansion will probably be bi-pedal hyenas complete with turbans and a middle eastern theme to appeal to the arab nations for more subs
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 11:18AM Lenn said

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@(Unverified) Not very far-fetched. Bi-pedal hyenas are already in the game.
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 11:56AM Utakata said

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@(Unverified)

Hogger of Arabia? o.O
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 2:03PM Daemodand said

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@(Unverified) Gnolls are my second-favorite monsters in AD&D. Shambling Mounds are my favorite.
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 1:28PM (Unverified) said

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"which is widely regarded as being designed with the Chinese market in mind."

does that mean that WotLK was made with the nordic market in mind?

so BC must have been made with the demonic and alien market in mind.

that must have been the problem with cata, they had no clear target market =P.

Posted: Mar 21st 2012 4:06PM Typhron said

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@(Unverified) Dragons.
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 4:35PM Fabius Bile said

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@(Unverified)

Version - target audience
-------------------------------------
vanilla - EverQuesters
TBC - WoWers
WotLK - idiots
Cat - down syndromes
MoP - asians
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 4:51PM (Unverified) said

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@Fabius Bile by that do I take you liked WotLK and loved cat?
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 7:29PM avaloner said

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@Fabius Bile
GW1: Console gamers
GW2: Dumbed down entitled console gamers who want semi-pay to win
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Posted: Mar 21st 2012 3:22PM Space Cobra said

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I'll add in my two cents, even though this has been quoted above:

"GamesIndustry.biz notes that the deal was consumated "just ahead of the launch of the fourth WoW expansion, Mists of Pandaria, which is widely regarded as being designed with the Chinese market in mind."

But see, the "trick" here is that they could easily have *planned* to put in Pandariens, knowing it would attract a Chinese partner and used it as their "selling point" in these talks. I mean, it takes time to code and plan, so they could easily advertise their future plans to prospective clients to "seal the deal".

TLDR : The deal may've been made before the launch, but that doesn't mean they didn't have plans/sketches to show what they were going to do *in the future* to attract a Chinese partner...

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