Analyst: Mists of Pandaria Sales “Disappointing”

It looks like Panda Fever isn’t as contagious as Blizzard may have hoped, because according to investment bank Lazard Capital Markets, sales of the World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria expansion have been “disappointing.” The fourth expansion for WoW has sold between 600,000 and 700,000 copies at retail since its launch earlier this week, Lazard estimates, which is 60% fewer than the previous expansion pack, Cataclysm.

Historically, each new World of Warcraft expansion has outsold its predecessors, and while these figures don’t factor in digital sales, Lazard analyst Atul Bagga believes they won’t make up for MoP’s poor retail performance.

About 25 percent of Activision Blizzard’s revenue and 50% of its operating income comes from World of Warcraft, which has Bagga concerned about the game’s continued longevity.

via VentureBeat

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9 Comments on Analyst: Mists of Pandaria Sales “Disappointing”


On September 28, 2012 at 10:45 am

“and while these figures don’t factor in digital sales”

So factor them in and get back to us. It makes since with launch time this year and ease of the digital sale, that most of the sales would come from digital purchases.


On September 28, 2012 at 12:57 pm

yea wel their 2 big reasons you shouldnt buy wow expansions in a store.

1. the software on youre dvd is outdated so youre better off downloading an up to date installer and buying a code directly into youre account,

2, seems rude but… its just another wow expansions… please let wow die now. you cant keep on milking this dead cow forever


On September 28, 2012 at 1:08 pm

Maybe WoW will turn F2P sooner than expected…

I know lots of peoples are tired of the WoW formula, but I wonder how many are tired of the Subscription that forces you to pay for a full month even if you play it only a few times during said month…


On September 28, 2012 at 2:50 pm

I’d worry, but not having the digital downloads figured in really cuts the numbers down. Since people who would have otherwise bought the collector’s edition can just get the digital deluxe edition to get the pets even more box sales have probably switched over.

Also, since the game has been pretty much been marketed as “Pandas and Pokemon” I think a decent number of more challenge seeking people who have been waiting based on this will see reviews and videos of challenge modes and actually give it a shot.

As a player completely disappointed with Cataclysm, I find Pandaria to be a good return to the old school type things that made the game so fun in the first place.

With Guild Wars 2, however, Blizzard has a lot of things to think about for the next expansion as to where the state of the social aspects of mmos are going. If you’ve played Guild Wars 2 and WoW, I think you know exactly what I’m talking about.


On September 30, 2012 at 2:55 pm

Figured as much. But actually blizzard has made billions over the past 7 years on an outdated game which it still is. So if you do the math of 600,000 times the subscription fee the game is still profitable.
The only way you can tell if the game is doing bad is when they decide to close servers down. Like alot of MMO’s do when its time to move on. But WOW has 2 expansions to go to level 100 before it ends.


On September 30, 2012 at 3:54 pm

Digital subscriptions might push it over a mill, but even if it doesn’t, 700k is more people playing an EXPANSION PACK than every game but GW2. They’ve had a helluva run, made more profit off of Pandaria than most MMO’s make over the life of their game, and as someone else said, they can still do two more expansion packs to get to level 100 than call it a day.

The only problem is you are getting to the point where if it goes on too long, it’s like watching Ali in his last fight, or Willie Mays in his last year. It just sorta gets embarassing and you’d wish the legends would’ve quit on top.

I was never a fan of WoW, but I always viewed it incredibly impressive what they were able to accomplish. Fools think that WoW’s success was a fluke, but they earned what they did.

Ron Whitaker

On October 1, 2012 at 5:56 am

@SuperHuman Unfortunately, the only people with those numbers work at Blizzard. Blizzard isn’t about to release those numbers unless they’re overwhelmingly positive.

However, I think we can safely assume that if the total number of subscribers has decreased (which it has), and retail sales are down 60% from Cataclysm (which they appear to be), then digital sales haven’t spiked 60%. I believe that digital sales have probably increased as a percentage of total sales since Cataclysm, as people are increasingly more likely to buy digitally. Still, to expect that number to jump 60% since the previous expansion is very unlikely. Nearly impossible, I would suggest.


On October 4, 2012 at 8:42 am

@Ron Whittaker:

You can correct me if I’m wrong here…but when it launched, I don’t believe that Cataclysm had an option for digital download. So EVERY digital sale is a spike in downloads from launch. Don’t hold me to that, as I’m absolutely not sure.

Either way, Blizzard just released their numbers and…it’s much more significant than 6-700,000.

Ron Whitaker

On October 5, 2012 at 6:06 am

@poolboy87: I’m fairly certain that there was a digital option for Cataclysm (but not 100% sure!). I saw the numbers, and they’re much better than the day one figures. Still, I wonder what the engagement is going to be like. A little over 2 million copies sold out of a little over 10 million subscribers. I wonder how long those other folks will hold out?

Keep in mind that a large number of WoW subscribers are in places like China, where the expansion may not even be available yet.