The WoW sub count has dropped 41% since Shadowlands launch

interesting read from SuperData, a Nielsen Company.
And incase you have no idea what SuperData is or why you should care about some random chart:

SuperData is the world’s leading provider of market intelligence. SuperData offers quantitative and qualitative insights on free-to-play games, digital console, mobile, PC downloadable, streaming media and gaming video content, eSports, and virtual reality.

In simple terms, they are the definitive tool and rating of gaming market performance and pulls their data from accurate market sources that aren’t privy to just any random joe. Ratings provided by Neilsen is what most industries (i.e. television, etc) use to judge the performance, strength and value of their markets.

Worldwide digital games earnings rose by 15% year-over-year to reach $11.6B in January 2021. Revenue was up annually across all device types. Mobile revenue grew by 6%. During the time period, PC earnings rose by 31% and console revenue increased by 24%. While January marks yet another month of revenue growth above 10%, it is one of the last months where year-over-year comparisons to game revenues before COVID-19 will be available.

Valorant earnings and player numbers rebounded in January thanks to the launch of a new character and fresh season of content. From December to January, earnings were up 39% while player numbers rose by 29%. Returning lapsed players accounted for 72% of the growth in monthly player numbers. The game’s long-term success will likely depend on the ability of developer Riot Games to consistently launch content in order to entice players to keep coming back.

World of Warcraft player numbers fell back to normal levels as the excitement around November’s Shadowlands expansion subsided. From November to January, revenue fell by 61% and user numbers declined by 41% (these figures do not include China). This roughly matches the pattern seen for the past several expansions, though Shadowlands had a bigger launch. Blizzard does appear to have found a way to increase how often expansions are able to boost earnings. The publisher recently announced that it will be adding the 2007 Burning Crusade expansion into World of Warcraft: Classic this year. Alternating between releasing all-new and classic expansions could cause WoW revenue to spike annually for the near future, instead of every two years (the typical development time for the title’s expansions).

The PC player base of Red Dead Redemption 2 hit its highest level ever in January and nearly doubled the user count of the console version. In December, Rockstar began selling the game’s multiplayer component, Red Dead Online, as a standalone purchase for $4.99 (raised to $19.99 on February 15). In December and January, PC sales of Red Dead Redemption 2 and Red Dead Online totaled a combined 1.8M, far higher than the console version (611K). The PC edition of the game benefited the most from the deal because some owners of the console version likely picked up the game on PC for cheap in order to take advantage of features like improved graphics.


Is there a problem here? It’s a common trend.


No no, it’s a sign that World of Warcraft is dying for realsies this time, clearly.


Seems normal. All the fotm tourists went back to their gacha games.


Thought it was a good read with supporting data. Also kinda debunks most of the stuff we see on these forms


RIP World of Warcraft.


Why is there another thread about this?

According to the article this is normal behavior and not something to celebrate on the forums.

It’s like people aren’t even reading what they post


I posted the info form the article.

I did not know anyone was celebrating. Seems like your putting emotion in to what you are reading. I read what I posted I thought the data was interesting.


If you start with a bigger launch and lose the same % you still have more players than prior expansions. So its a success.

MMO always lose a big % after a few months because a lot of people get through the content once and then leave to wait for more. Doesn’t mean they don’t like the game.


It’s interesting to me that the decline rate is the same during a period when the pandemic-related restrictions have not been completely lifted as during a time period with no such restrictions on movement.

That is, they still have a somewhat captive audience right now, yet the declines are similar to when people can easily go do something else.

Also interesting, in part, because it may be that the pandemic-related restrictions impacted sub and SL sales numbers. Very hard to quantify that, tho’.

None of this is a judgement, just a description of the situation.


So, WoW is continuing to decline… We already knew that!

Shocking, a normal trend happened


Every. Single. Expansion.

Every expansion these drops happen after launch and the board trips over itself trying to be the first to yell “I TOLD YOU SO!”

What is the point? How does it affect you? Play the game or don’t, no one cares.


It’s not a captive audience when they can go off and play any other game. Nothing about the pandemic is unique to WoW.

That’s not what this says

Yes, it is.



You need to be able to see around the propaganda. Show me anywhere in the stats where you saw an increase of subs.

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A 41% drop in subs after 99 days of release during a world wide pandemic that is giving people (in some places) more time home.

YEAH totally normal guys, I personally can’t wait for the next 6 month mount, maybe this time they will do a good ol’ switch-a-roo and give us a mog! :astonished:


And some people way less extra money.

But I digress.
There have been dozens of posts about how “half” or more of the playerbase has disappeared and now this article (with no real data btw as sub numbers are not released) saying that A) it’s normal and b) it’s 40% not ‘half’ or more and c) it shows that Shadowlands was a success.

Let’s look at the ‘facts’ (intentionally in quotes) , Shadowlands had a bigger launch then normal then went down the same % as past expansions therefore in raw numbers there is still more playing than this time in previous expansions.

Thank you OP for showing that shadowlands was a success, now the question remains … what does it matter ?

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