Seems to me that Blizzard is the only company that is actually earning real money from MMO. Yet all the other idiots still got into - or want to get into - the MMO business, and then got their arses handed to them by Blizzard, (i.e., BioWare, Bethesda.) Seriously, MMO is an over-saturated market. The MMO total market share is not growing. Everyone who wants to play MMO is married to World of WarCraft. Then there are the rest of us who absolutely refuse to play MMO. BioWare, Bethesda or whatever companies that try their hands on MMO would never get a dime or minute out of us for their MMO.
Considering the MMO market is thriving with a number of titles, it seems to me like you don't know much about the market or the genre. You don't need anywhere near WoW numbers to turn a healthy profit.
I mostly agree with you, but having ****loads of revenue, does not automatically means you are not in red numbers in the end.
And your table also proves few of ktchong's points. MMO market is dominated by WoW and NCsoft. For a new MMOs, it is very hard to get out of red numbers after all. The biggest example is SW: TOR. The game was a reason why EA bought Bioware in the first place IMO, that's 860 mio. Let's say Bioware was worth 4/5 of the price (688 mio) of whole Bio/Pandemic bundle and the development cost 200 mio (not included marketing costs and royalties).
The estimate of the development time and all expenses included is at 500 mio.
That makes 1,188 bio of money spent on that game. So even if the revenue would be profit, which is not, the game would get into black numbers maybe in 7 - 8 years, because most of the money earned was from the initial sales, and these revenues are not in the table as well.
As we all know the difference between revenue and profit can be astronomical. EAs revenue in 2013 was 3,797 bio. GAAP net income was 98 mio. Non-GAAP revenue and net income was at 3,793 bio and 264 mio respectively.
So coming out of these numbers, my uneducated guess is, that it might take them a "little bit" more that 7-8 years to get out of red number with this game
FFXIV is very similar story, but so far without numbers provided (feel free to correct me if I missed them)
But on the other hand FFXI was confirmed by Wada-san as a most profitable FF ever.
But nevertheless it took them 10 years to get there.