|The World of Warcraft is serious business. So serious that I write on a WoW-based site and you get to visit. So serious that even mail-order brides can be ordered within leading to amazing relationships right before our eyes . So serious that even shrinks are being brought in to help the addiction. Obviously the game makes Activision Blizzard a truck load of cash month to month with over 11.5 million subscribers, but how many copies of the game have actually sold in US stores?|
NPD Group, the cats who have the means to track such data have an answer and it is quite impressive. Realize that these numbers don't track digital sales, downloading the client and paying for a key or figures outside of the United States. According to NPD the lifetime sales of the game are 8.6 million. That is standard, all the expansions and every collectors edition. That is over 153,500 copies a month and over 5,100 copies a day; absolutely jaw dropping.
It is a bit difficult to compare this to other games that have a much higher sales like Wii Play, Pokemon R/B/Y, Sims 1/2, Starcraft, etc. Numbers we have for their lifetime sales are generally world-wide. Starcraft for instance has moved 11 million copies but those are world-wide figures as are Wii Play's 22 million plus. (check more here via wiki sources). I figure with sales from around the world included WoW probably tops all but a few of Nintendo's console/hand-held titles which dominate the console charts and maybe the Sims 1 and 2 and their expansions on the PC.
Besides for the whole "Chinese rights transfer" business the game is still showing few signs of slowing down. People may come on here and gripe about the game, arena, PVE or Serennia never winning a tournament. Largely though the masses move on playing away in their vast social networks within game. New people pick up the game as others move on to new MMOs or new genres in general and the money continues to pour in.
I am with the train of thought that there may never be a MMO that tops these kinds of numbers. I would even go as far to say that WoW 2 or Blizzard's next project may not either. Its possible but I almost think that maybe this was the right game at the right time with low enough specs to reach a massive audience. Thoughts?