BioShockâ€˜s Levine, who played WoWâ€˜s beta version more than five years ago, says he still devotes several hours to the game every week.
Pardo aimed for the sky: 1 million subscribers, which would have made his game far and away the most popular MMO of all time.
WoW passed that milestone in a matter of months. â€œWe were off by about an order of magnitude,â€ he said.
Pardo, now an executive VP at Blizzard, said he never thought that Warcraftâ€˜s world could go on for five years. â€œWhen you look historically at what other MMOs have done, by the time you hit the five-year mark, youâ€™ve already hit your peak,â€ he said. â€œWith World of Warcraft, people are like, â€˜Iâ€™ve been playing this game for five years, and I still love it.â€™â€
â€œI just love being in that world,â€ he said. â€œWhen you go into [the city] Stormwind, you go across the bridge and see all those giant statues of the heroes, that sells the space. Itâ€™s over the top, itâ€™s huge and you know what youâ€™re getting into.â€
The fastidiously detailed underwater dystopia of BioShock was influenced by WoWâ€˜s grandeur, Levine said: â€œAny project where you need to sell people on a space in a videogame, you can learn something from World of Warcraft.â€