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Thread: Virtual worlds are 'worth $1bn'

  1. #1
    popopot's Avatar To Me, To You BT Rep: +5
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Just over there
    Story below. Source:

    Millions of people are flocking to inhabit virtual online worlds, says research by analysts Screen Digest.

    The market for massively multiplayer online games (MMOGs) in the West is now worth more than $1bn (511m)

    Games such as World of Warcraft and worlds like Habbo Hotel are fast becoming "significant platforms" in the converged media world, the report said.

    "There's a whole ream of different genres and spaces emerging," said the report author Piers Harding-Rolls.

    Revenues from subscriptions to MMOGs will hit $1.5bn by 2011, he said.

    But the growth in MMOGs remains limited compared to developing markets such as video on demand, which is expected to be worth $11.4bn from revenues in four years' time.

    The range of MMOGs has started to diversify in recent years with new genres and types of games. There has also been an expansion in the different ways the games generate revenue.

    Subscription MMOGs still dominate the market, accounting for 87% of all revenues, said the report, which examines the market only for North America and Europe.

    World of Warcraft, which has eight million subscribers, has more than a 50% share of that particular market, it said.

    "Over the last couple of years, certainly in Europe, the MMOG market has mushroomed partly due to the success of World of Warcraft," said Mr Harding-Rolls.

    "There are lots of things driving growth. There has been a shift from what were traditional, core games into a more casual space."

    Mr Harding-Rolls said a number of new MMOG genres were emerging, including:

    # Virtual world building games, such as Second Life

    # Virtual pet rearing games, such as Neo pets

    # More casual MMO puzzle games

    # Sports games in which you have to buy items and build up your character

    "There is a spreading influence of MMOGs and their inherent social and community aspects in other parts of interactive entertainment," he said.

    Earlier this month at the Game Developer's Conference, in San Francisco, the developers of MMOGs predicted that big media companies would be moving into the market.

    The Screen Digest report agreed, predicting that "traditional media companies are seeking to bring their non-gaming brands into the 3D online environment.

    "These companies aim to build online communities, increase brand awareness and gain access to key consumers that can be monetised falling offline advertising revenue."

    Mr Harding-Rolls predicted that the continued roll-out of broadband and the availability of next-generation consoles would help drive MMOG growth.

    More than 10 million people will subscribe to MMOGs by 2011, and many millions more will play online games driven by other payment schemes, such as advertising and virtual purchases, the report predicted.


    World of Warcraft
    Final Fantasy Online
    Everquest II
    *determined by subscription revenue Source: Screen Digest

  2. Games   -   #2
    Bucktoof's Avatar Byaaah! BT Rep: +8BT Rep +8
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Just shows that nerds are dominant I don't play any mmorpgs, and I don't plan on it either as I've seen it kill the lives of some people I know.

    Honestly, I think that number has already been reached, a lot of stuff goes under the radar so to speak

  3. Games   -   #3
    World of Warcraft is the most boring game ever. The only MMOG that was any good was Ultima Online and now that's outdated and dead.

  4. Games   -   #4
    I heard they making another Ultima Online game, but yea World of Warcraft is definitely a boring game but I guess its fun for all the people that never try MMO before.

  5. Games   -   #5
    ''The only MMOG that was any good was Ultima Online ''

    Dam you could not more accurate ! Yes UO was such a great mmorpg. No restriction wat so ever. Few years ago there was a german team planning to port UO in a totaly new 3d look. 3d firstperson shooter view and compatible with officials origin servers. Still nothing new appened since, so I guess that the project is dead.. I hope that EA will make a totaly new UO (respecting rules of the old one!). When you enter the mmorpg world with UO,, well, everything else seams boring I agree!

  6. Games   -   #6
    Colt Seevers's Avatar P()()p!3 $CR/-\P3R$ BT Rep: +3
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Anyone play the LoTR beta MMORPG? I tried it but didn't like it, they basically took the same route as WoW as far as I can see. But that just doesn't appeal to me ....

    To have the word Role-playing in this type of genre is just misleading because I very rarely see anyone actually role-playing on these games.....unless I have misinterpreted the other players actions, and they are all playing the role of semi literate R-tards... Of course there are those that try to RP, and they are to be commended.

    Until they invent a way to force people into role-playing or have RP only servers...or something like that - I just can't be arsed grinding my life away....last game of this ilk I really got into was SWG, and look at it now... a barren wasteland populated by very few people, at least the farstarr server became that way at any rate.


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