World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria may not be all that people are hoping it to be. The upcoming expansion for the MMORPG giant World of Warcraft promises to be a very…interesting expansion on the game. A new playable race, Pandaren, ( a very panda-like race) seem to me to be a little too cute and cuddly to really have mass appeal to the fan base that developer company Blizzard has established.
Turns out there’s a reason for it, though. With subscriptions to the game on the decline, Blizzard is turning its sights on a new market: China. Which makes Pandas make more sense. The new land to explore is also a very Asian-type landscape, which makes further sense as to the fact that Blizzard is targeting China.
World of Warcraft is already very big in China, but with certain government restrictions on games (such as taboos on death themes, like bones and dead bodies), Blizzard has had to make a number of tweaks to how the game looks. And since they’ve already had experience tailoring the game to the way the Chinese want it, why not target an expansion for them?
Another demographic that World of Warcraft is hoping to target is younger children. A new element of battle is being introduced, one in which your character’s pets can do battle with each other. This very Pokemon-like element is sure to be attractive to a younger audience, thus pulling in those young gamers.
Either way you slice it, it seems Blizzard is no longer interested in the hardcore gamer demographic. With other games out there competing with it, this seems like a smart move for Blizzard, if not a disappointing one.
Do you play World of Warcraft? What do you think about Blizzard’s seeming change in marketing strategy? Sound off below.