Will Star Trek Online suffer the effects of the WoW Tourist?

First let’s define “WoW Tourism” I believe that this term was first used by SynCaine I cannot find the exact post but he is the first one I remember using the term. WoW tourism is the phenomenon that occurs when a new MMO has massive initial sells then after the first month looses a large percentage of its subscribers back to WoW. Now I am not sure that this is exactly what happens but that is how it is going to be defined.

The first time that this phenomenon was really observed in the wild is the release of Age of Conan, it initially sold over a million copies of the game now it is sitting well under 500k subscribers. Shortly after that Warhammer online released to critical acclaim and sold over a million boxes now it sits at 4 servers and some claim it is on life support. Then Aion sold millions of copies and lost a lot of its subscribers. I think it is holding onto more than the others though.

Normally I would say that Star Trek Online would be a niche title like EVE or Darkfall due to its sci-fi setting. But with it being one of the most popular IPs ever and it having a huge non gamer following that goes way back before video games even existed I think it has potential.

Initially the game will pull in some huge numbers and pull them from the same places that WAR and AoC pulled them from. The MMO player that is looking for a new home the “WoW Tourist”, they will announce over a million copies sold and promptly loose 3/4 of those subscribers. Then something strange will happen, they will start to gain subscribers again and these will all be new people to the Genre they will be the people that see it on the shelf and think “HOLY CRAP A NEW STAR TREK GAME” they will then quickly purchase it and not even realize that it is an mmo may not even know what an MMO is. A few hundred thousand people will purchase the game this way and a large percentage of the people will stay with it for a long time.

My final prediction for the game after one year will be around 300k subscribers. So to answer the initial question, yes it will suffer the “WoW tourist” effect but it will recover from non-wow players.

Buy Star Trek Online

7 Responses to Will Star Trek Online suffer the effects of the WoW Tourist?

  1. is the game good btw? im really not sure about buying it, waiting for first reviews. i bought champions and it sucked, i think this will be the same. you cant release two mmos in a such short time period like this, them not being very alike… it will also lack content imho, but i hope i wont be right (i really respect blizzards marketing, and i know wow was important for mmo gaming, but im really really an anti-wow person)

  2. Jim says:

    I still have not formed an opinion on the game yet. Right now I am having fun playing it but it has not really sucked me in like some games.

    I doubt I will play it long. But we shall see.

    I purchase most of the games that come out just because I want to encourage other developers to make games. It is my way of “Donating” to the cause.

  3. yeah its the same with me, but now i bought many fresh games (global agenda on monday for example), and STO seems a bit like a waste of money. and yes, just by looking on the videos / screens the game seems to be lacking content. and im not relly trusting cryptic… S:

  4. Jim says:

    I am not convinced that cryptic actually knows how to make a game.

  5. yeah, im on the same opinion. it feels like they arent willing to put enough time into a game. but maybe if they can get some $$$ with STO they wil start making a decent, more complex mmo.

  6. Adam says:


    Don’t buy bad games and they won’t make more bad games.

    They might start making good games or they might go die and let someone else try.


  7. Mike Rota says:

    Sorry I have played alot of different MMO’s and nothing comes close to WoW. Although I do agree people are finding that they are running out of things to do on WoW but I take an exception to this because to do everything that can be done on WoW would take forever and people are just looking for new content to play. I think WoW will be around long after the rest of these games wither up and die. Why? Blizzard makes sure they have a solid game before they release it. They don’t have a publisher pushing them to release a game by a certain date Blizzard takes the wait till it’s done approach which I wish more companies would follow!

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