Blizzard Unfazed by Conan, Warhammer

Blizzard Unfazed by Conan, Warhammer

Blizzard president Mike Morhaime wasn’t shy in calling out competing products during a Wednesday earnings call, as he pointed out how players may leave World of Warcraft for other MMOs, but they often come right back.

"Age of Conan launched toward the end of the June quarter, and Warhammer Online came out in mid-September," he pointed out.

"To date, 68 percent of the players who listed Age of Conan as their reason for cancellation, and 46 percent of players who listed Warhammer as their reason for cancellation have reactivated their subscriptions to World of Warcraft."

Blizzard announced last week that the worldwide player base for WoW has exceeded 11 million players. With the expansion, Wrath of the Lich King coming in November, Blizzard expects more players to reactivate their accounts, and new ones to join the fray.

Wrath of the Lich King is the top pre-order on Amazon.com for all videogames, and Wal-Mart told Blizzard pre-orders were very strong on Wal-Mart.com.

The game is still going strong despite originally launching in 2004. The first expansion, The Burning Crusade, launched in January 2007 and sold nearly 2.4 million copies in its first 24 hours.

During the quarter, WoW managed to accumulate 1.5 million more players than the same time last year.

Blizzard also launched the game in Russia and Latin America during the third fiscal quarter.

The company expects to exceed $1 billion in revenue this year for the second year in the row.