Analysts describe Mists of Pandaria sales as below expectations.
How is Mists of Pandaria for you?
Most of the folks I speak to -- I haven't had chance to play it myself yet, that will change shortly -- are quite positive about World of Warcraft's latest expansion.
However, as reported by Venture Beat, one analyst believes that MoP is not going to perform as well as previous releases.
Atul Bagga, of investment bank Lazard Capital Markets, proclaimed that retail sales of MoP are 60% below those for Cataclysm. This figure does not include digital copies, but Bagga believes that purchased downloads will not make up for the shortfall on overall sales.
This speculation has to be of concern for Activision/Blizzard due to the huge importance of World of Warcraft in regards to the companies' overall revenue.
In my opinion, it's too early to be hammering a nail in the expansion's coffin for a number of reasons.
Firstly, there's no doubt a lot of players were disappointed by Cataclysm and could still pick up MoP if there is positive buzz regarding its content. Though certainly rates of early adoption would have been affected, it doesn't count out the possibility of long term players coming back if their guildies report that all is well in Pandaria.
Secondly, many people -- including myself -- are moving to digital and it could be easy to underestimate the size of that avenue of sales for the overall performance of the expansion.
Still, there's no doubt that WoW finds itself challenged by the success of Guild Wars 2 -- the biggest launch of any competitor to WoW -- as well as its own longevity. It is a game that has been around so long its player churn could be starting to catch up to it.
Are you playing MoP? What do you think so far?
Did you pass on buying it? If so, would you pick it up if there are enough players giving good reviews?
Let us know below and be sure to check out Wowhead for all the tools and resources your panda could need.
Scott "Jarimor" Hawkes, Editor in Chief