Activision boss Bobby Kotick has said that he thinks it would take an investment of half a billion to a billion dollars to combat WoW, and even then success wouldn’t be guaranteed.
“We don’t think that even if we made the $500 million or billion-dollar investment to get a product out [to compete with WOW] that we would even be successful doing it,” he said in an investor meeting.
“When we first started looking at it, it appeared to us like a game in an insurmountable product category… EA, Microsoft, Sony and scores of venture capital investments had been put to work unsuccessfully in trying to develop massively multiplayer games as a product opportunity,” Kotick said. “When you… Look at all the money that’s already gone to these businesses that have failed, there didn’t seem a likelihood that even a well-managed company like Activision would have the prospect for profit any time soon in this category.”
The answer to the riddle of how to compete with WoW was, obviously, to merge with Blizzard. Bet companies like Funcom and Mythic are encouraged by his words.