This is according to a new press release from developer Blizzard Entertainment, which revealed yesterday (December 8) that the game moved 3.7million copies just on launch day, November 23. The figure beats out previous record holder Diablo III, another Blizzard IP, which sold 3.5million copies when it was first released back in 2012.
Blizzard Entertainment also noted that, in part due to lockdowns and social distancing measures stemming from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, player numbers and engagement for World Of Warcraft in 2020 have been significantly higher than any period prior.
“In the months leading up to the expansion’s release and the time since launch, the game reached and has sustained its highest number of players on monthly or longer-term subscriptions compared to the same period ahead of and following any WoW expansion in the past decade, in both the West and the East,” the developer noted.
However, as Engadget points out, the 3.7million figure is likely to be solely based on paid games, and does not include free-to-play titles or giveaways. For instance, earlier this year, the giveaway of Total War Saga: Troy on the Epic Games Store was claimed by 7.5million users in its first 24 hours.
World Of Warcraft: Shadowland was released on November 23, a month after its planned launch date of October 27. Blizzard Entertainment pushed back the title’s release in early October, citing the need for “a little more time for additional polish”.
The developer previously released animated shorts based on the newly released expansion pack. Titled Shadowlands Afterlife, the four-episode series gave players a sneak peek of the ancient and powerful Covenants that rule over the four new zones in Shadowlands.