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Diablo III sales and World of Warcraft subscriber count revealed in Activision earnings report

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World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria

Buried among the dividend dealings and funny terms (challenge: use "Generally Accepted Accounting Principles" in normal conversation) of Activision's latest report to its shareholders are two intriguing info-nuggets for a pair of Blizzard mega-franchises: Diablo III sold more than 12 million copies through the end of 2012, and subscriber numbers for World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria dropped to 9.6 million according to "internal estimates" at the publishing giant.

Though Diablo III's community troubles were renewed with the recent exit of Director Jay Wilson , the raw numbers still firmly place the gear-grinding RPG as a multi-record breaker . Its latest update, 1.0.7, implements long-awaited PVP duels and additional crafting features.

On the other paw, the launch of Warcraft's fourth expansion originally pushed player counts above 10 million as eager heroes swarmed into the new zone of Pandaria and tried out the Monk class. The most likely culprit for the slippage, we assume, is players exhausting or growing bored with end-game offerings, including repeatable content such as pet battles and daily quests. The incoming 5.2 patch aims to fix things up with new world bosses, raid encounters, and more quest hubs.

If you're yearnin' for more earnin', check out the rest of Activision's report here .

Omri Petitte is a former PC Gamer associate editor and long-time freelance writer covering news and reviews. If you spot his name, it probably means you're reading about some kind of first-person shooter. Why yes, he would like to talk to you about Battlefield. Do you have a few days?