World of Warcraft subscribers drop to 9-year low

Blizzard is getting ready to reveal the sixth World of Warcraft expansion at Gamescom later this week, and it seems the news can’t come soon enough. The latest subscriber numbers for the groundbreaking MMORPG show it sitting at a level not seen since just after the original game’s launch in 2005.

This certainly explains why Blizzard is seen to be rushing into the new content so soon after the 2014 launch of the latest expansion.

Blizzard has confirmed that as at June 30, 2015, World of Warcraft is sitting at 5.6 million subscribers. Nine months ago, following the launch of Warlords of Draenor, that number was over 10 million.

The publisher also acknowledges that the latest WoW update, Fury of Hellfire, launched on June 23. The new content is credited with helping to “stabilise the subscriber number towards the end of the quarter,” implying that the number could have been even worse.

In response, Blizzard president Mike Morhaime says his company will be speeding up the release of new content as a way of helping to retain players. He also hopes that the Warcraft movie will bring newcomers to the game.

The sixth expansion for World of Warcraft will be revealed on Thursday of this week – rumours (and trademark filings) suggest it may be titled Council of Glades.

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