Not the best of days for World of Warcraft news, this, with the announcement of the game's stagnant userbase followed by a revelation most new WoW players barely scratch at Azeroth's surface.
Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime said earlier today that 70% of people playing on a WoW trial account (which I'd imagine would be most new players) fail to progress past level 10 in the game. Considering you can advance your character all the way up to level 80, that's not very far, indicating that most WoW players either hang around doing nothing or, as seems more likely, don't stick around too long.
And that suggests the game has a fairly high turnover rate at the moment, perhaps explaining why WoW's subscriber base hasn't moved past 11.5 million in over a year.
If Blizzard can't address that in the game's upcoming expansion pack, Cataclysm, we really could - finally - be looking at the game's tipping point in terms of popularity. Not its end, of course...just the point where the end is closer than the beginning, and that almighty playerbase begins to contract a little.
Which, to be honest, I've been looking forward to for years. I do love a good struggle over succession. The King is dead, long live the King, etc etc.