Wednesday, February 04, 2015

WoWInsider and Massively Updates

WoW Insider

WoW Insider has reincarnated as Blizzard Watch. They set up a Patreon fund, and currently have abou $12,000 pledged monthly. We'll see how much of that is real, and how much evaporates 3 months from now.

But still, it's an impressive job by the Blizzard Watch team and the community. The new site is pretty nice as well. I also under-estimated how much they needed to run the site. I was expecting it to cost more.


The Massively crew has announced plans to return as Massively Overpowered. They don't have a site up yet, but they have a Twitter account. I wonder if they will do as well as Blizzard Watch. It's possible that Blizzard Watch has stolen a march on Massively, and sucked up a lot of the community dollars. I guess it would depend on the audience overlap of the two sites.

I must confess that I don't really like the new name. I know what they're trying to get at, but Massively Overpowered is such a "gamist" name. It kind of brings to mind people arguing about their classes on forums. It feels like gamer bravado to me, more than anything else.

The original, just plain "Massively", always invoked the word "multiplayer" for me. It highlighted that these games were about building worlds and large communities. It evoked a very positive, forward-looking perspective, with a larger sense of scale.

Adding the word "Overpowered" cuts against that sense of scale, and drags the perspective back to that of trolls slinging mud on the forums. It's gamer slang, with negative connotations, and thus evokes negative gamer behavior.


  1. I hope they both do well and I'll be happy to chip in for MO when it goes live. Though I admit I'm a little worried that the new site currently says that it won't go live until next month. I understand that this kind of thing takes time, but I think the WI crew acted wisely by trying to get a foot in the door as quickly as possible and channeling the momentum of their existing fanbase into something new right away. I worry that the Massively crew will have less of that to work with if it takes them a month to set things up.

  2. They may not have much choice if they wanted to keep "Massively" in the name; I suspect that AOL owns the rights.

  3. @Shintar, yes, I think Blizzard Watch was very right to "strike while the iron was hot".

    @Redbeard, true. But since it's the "Overpowered" part I don't like, they could have chosen something different.