Actiblizzard announced yesterday that subscriptions for WoW have remained stable over the last quarter (ie. Dec 2011-March 2012).
So despite the current Cataclysm content being widely considered by players to be poor in comparison to previous expansions, and there having been no new content added since last November (patch 4.3), players are hanging in there. That’s not what I would have expected to see. Even allowing for the annual pass tying players in for a year, only a proportion of the player base would have taken that offer up. All you can assume is that Blizzard will feel that whatever they are currently doing with WoW is working, or at least not failing. These long content gaps towards the end of WoW expansions – players clearly are cool with that.
Or not. (I’d disagree that Cataclysm is in its dog days now, I think it has been since shortly after the last patch. But clearly 10.2 mil subscribers disagree ). If you play WoW at the moment, are you surprised to see sub numbers stable over the last few months?
Now, pre-orders for Diablo 3 setting some kind of new record for Blizzard doesn’t surprise me, by comparison.