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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

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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 (opens in new tab) 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 (opens in new tab) , the raw numbers still firmly place the gear-grinding RPG as a multi-record breaker (opens in new tab) . Its latest update, 1.0.7, implements long-awaited PVP duels (opens in new tab) and additional crafting features.

On the other paw, the launch of Warcraft's fourth expansion originally pushed player counts above 10 million (opens in new tab) 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 (opens in new tab) 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 (opens in new tab) .

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?