World Of Warcraft May Be Seeing A Decline As Blizzard Announces Another Consolidation Of Servers

World Of Warcraft May Be Seeing A Decline As Blizzard Announces Another Consolidation Of Servers
Credit: World of Warcraft

The titan of MMOs known as World of Warcraft might actually be seeing a decline in subscriptions as Blizzard has announced that they are going to be consolidating low-population servers with crowded ones to provide players a better experience.

Makes sense to ensure that players will be able to enjoy the benefits of having the first two ‘M’s in the name of the genre: massively multiplayer. It isn’t the first server consolidation that WoW has gone through, and likely won’t be the last.

Originally debuted in 2004 against what were then the titans of Everquest and the glorious experience that was Ultima OnlineWorld of Warcraft wowed (heh) users with more in-depth skill trees and abilities, questing with dungeons and bosses that required more than clicking until the ugly thing stopped swinging at you.

It was brilliant for its time; some are speculating, however, that its time has passed. Less for World of Warcraft specifically, and more for the MMO genre as a whole.

MMOs were astonishing back in the heyday of the late 90s, placing massive numbers of people within a server that would play with each other, exploring new worlds and lands as they battled side by side against newly-forged friends against fantastical beasts while doing the odd-number quests that crossed their path.

In the modern world, where we’re all constantly interconnected to the point that taking a break from it feels blissful, it simply doesn’t quite hit the same way.

Many MMOs face the criticism of constant fetch-quests that have absolutely zero bearings on the overall storylines a title is attempting to tell (if they try to tell one at all), and the every-day grind of logging in to do the same thing again and again for mediocre rewards is difficult to champion in an era where your friends are a quick message away, Discord has us all aggregated, and there are so many enthralling tales to tell across a wide spectrum of titles that you can play with your friends, or against them.

The entire industry has changed, and MMOs are a massive part of the reasoning behind it; but unless MMOs decide to take a look at themselves and value a players time more than meaningless quests of ‘kill 20 wolves in this small area’ ad infinitum, some are proposing that they could end up left in the dust. Not that the genre is dying; this isn’t a hit piece against it, but more so that it may be struggling to keep up with the times.

Add in a smattering of the Ship of Theseus dilemma, that Blizzard is clearly struggling through at the moment based on Warcraft 3 Reforged being a massive slap to fans, and the writing seems on the wall as far as the number of days WoW has left.

Of course, World of Warcraft will remain one of the most popular MMOs for quite some time, in the same manner that Ultima Online still has a dedicated player base; people are comfortable doing what they know, and what is in WoW isn’t all atrocious to modern-day standards. With Shadowlands still slated to come ‘sometime in 2020’, it could be a massive revamp that is just what the doctor ordered to revitalize the title.