World of Warcraft: next major update due ‘in coming weeks’

Friday, 8 February 2013 12:51 GMT By Dave Cook

World of Warcraft subscriptions are down due to a change in attitude from gamers, according to Blizzard chief Mike Morhaime. The studio has responded by rolling out more frequent updates to satisfy gamers who come and go regularly, and as such, the game’s next major update is being worked on now, and is due in a few weeks.

Speaking as part of Activision’s investor call last night, Morhaime explained the shift in player behaviour, “We have seen an evolution in player behaviour since the launch of Cataclysm. Players consume content quickly – they’re more apt to come and go from the community, which is why we are targeting more frequent updates.

“The development team continues to stick with the plan of more frequent content updates in the wake of the expansion launch, applying lessons that we have learned from past expansions.”

He added that the game’s next update will drop, “in the coming weeks”.

On the decline of WoW subscribers posted last night, Morhaime continued, ” I think another thing to note is, if you compare the month following Cataclysm and the month following Mists of Pandaria, the trailing months have been stronger with Mists and have seen an increase in engagement in all regions.

“We’ve always had competition for World of Warcraft in all markets. I think it’s fair to say that competition has increased, but I think it’s also important to point out that World of Warcraft is competing against all forms of entertainment for leisure time, and so that just underscores the need for us to continue creating new content to keep up engagement.

“With respect to China, despite the decline in subscribership it’s important to note that the engagement levels of the core audience did increase with the launch of the expansion.”

What do you make of Blizzard’s new approach and the falling WoW subs? Let us know below.