World of Warcraft’s newest expansion, Shadowlands, releasing November 23, has the most pre-orders in the game’s history.
In a report by PC Gamer, Activision Blizzard CEO Robert Kotick said in a recent earnings call, “We’ve seen unprecedented engagement trends since the subscriber base doubled following the launch of Classic last year. Pre-sales of the upcoming Shadowlands expansion are the highest we’ve seen at this stage ahead of any release.”
Kotick went on to say that World of Warcraft is one of the few IPs that still produces “over $1 billion” in annual net bookings, alongside Candy Crush and Call of Duty. Citing this, he went on to state the player base is “quite healthy”.
Activision Blizzard COO Daniel Alegre said, as the conversation continued, “Franchise engagement is at its highest level for this stage ahead of an expansion in a decade”. While this is the largest number of pre-sales in the game’s 16-year tenure, this does not necessarily correlate to post-launch sales. However, current engagement suggests changes that players are receptive to; the player base in the beta is excited at the changes being made in the pre-patch, with a resurgence in player interest and engagement at the leveling revamp and squish. Time will tell if these changes are substantial enough to keep players in the world of Azeroth for a little while longer.
The expansion was set to be released October 27, but the company decided to delay the release for the opportunity to make more adjustments and finishing touches based on player feedback during the beta, as well as continue adjusting to a work-from-home environment due to the pandemic.
Shadowlands fully releases on November 23.
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