Launched in November of 2004, World of Warcraft quickly became the preeminent MMOG in North America. Its first expansion, The Burning Crusade, was released in January of this year to massive success, selling almost 2.4 million copies in the 24 hours following its unveiling. Blizzard is currently working with The9 in preparation for the Chinese launch of The Burning Crusade.
Mike Morhaime, President of Blizzard Entertainment, said, "We're thrilled that gamers around the world have continued to embrace World of Warcraft so enthusiastically. We've worked hard to provide a compelling experience for our players, and we plan to continue updating the game with exciting new content for them to enjoy for many years to come."
According to the Blizzard web site, a subscriber is defined as an individual who has a paid subscription, an active prepaid access card or is within the free 30-day period that comes with the purchase of the game. Also included are internet game room players who have accessed the game within the previous 30 days. Free promotional subscriptions, expired and canceled subscriptions and expired prepaid cards are not counted.