I think many many MANY people are going to migrate to Age of Conan.
This is such a huge misconception. Despite what people on forums threaten to do when Blizzard doesn't improve their class in the way they want, few if any people actually "migrate" anywhere. They may buy a game and try it out for 30 days, but it comes down to one thing: People don't like to start from scratch.
Add to that the fact that AOC has no content with which to keep people busy, and the fact that it is quite buggy and unpolished, even for a new MMO.
AOC isn't a flop, but its definitely not some kind of WoW killer naive idiots were thinking it would be. WoW has reached critical mass, it's a social networking thing as much as it is a game now. People looking to play an MMO aren't gonna go play by themselves in some game no one is playing, they are gonna go where their friends are, and it's probably WoW.
I was in the Age of Conan beta for a few months and had a level 73 Conqueror before the last character wipe and a 71 Dark Templar after. I can tell you without a doubt that many people will try the game, but their subscriber numbers will not hit anything spectacular, and the retention will be extremely poor due to lack of content.
Wrath of the Lich King will come out and despite everyone whining about Death Knight, everyone is going to want to try one, and everyone is going to want to see all the new content. Blizzard is really onto something here. They've found that players will put up with no significant new content for about 1.5 to 2 years, assuming you add little tidbits here and there, an instance or something. So they don't have the stress of putting out a pack every 6 or 12 months, and wait until their playerbase is just starting to get content fatigue, and then drop a new xpac on em.
The only people quitting WoW permanently to go play some other MMO are people who are just burned out on the game entirely (relatively rare, usually other reasons like a guild breakup or problems, or real life schedule changes). Or, they are casual players who MMO-hop constantly anyway and probably have not invested much effort into their WoW characters.
For all its problems, with WoW at least you know what you're getting. You don't get crashes every 15 minutes, zones don't crash constantly, the game runs on a wide variety of systems instead of requiring a $2000 rig to run well. Heh, and in AOC all the pretty graphics are worthless because you can't see anything until its 5 feet in front of you, even maxed out.
You also know you will be getting timely patches that have been tested and aren't going to break the whole damn game for half the players.
Funcom has great ideas but they are terrible at launching and maintaining an MMO.This comment was edited on May 21, 03:53.