I can put myself along the lines of the Stones, Sting, Led Zeppelin, etc...
But, I ain't making no comeback..lol.
To celebrate though, later I will pop up some of the instrumental work I have done over the last year, and give you an idea of what is inside my head when I play music.
I sometimes miss what I did in the old days, but I also played during the hair band era, and really, does anyone listen to that 80's stuff? (oops...sorry Wifey, as she indignantly looks at me, and pops in her Bon Jovi CD.)
If I have a chance, my mother sent me an old .45 (yes, REAL VINYL) of the single we released in my old band. I thought any of that material lost, but I have the exclusive A/B side love from happier times...
Then computers took over..
Enough about that, today I have more fun with numbers.
It seems some do not enjoy crunching and research..yet, thanks to it's mathematical equations, and coming up with formulas...it is like music, which is it's own math heaven.
I am mostly interested in how the popularity of some titles relate to their sales and subscriber base, and it gives us a birds eye view of the overall structure and health of the MMO.
Luckily I ran into a nice post on MMORPG (which now eludes me...if I find it later, I will post it...old age I guess...) that has a good breakdown of the equation of XFire users compared to player base numbers.
It is quite impressive, so lets look at how the commenter came up with his data.
His argument was in regards to Age of Conan, which so many joke has roughly 10-30,000 users. People are like that (not unlike a certain person reviewing the game, and when prodded noted he had never PLAYED the game...and to top it off, his review was picked up by Kotaku and plastered all over the net....stupid people...)
But, he wanted to show that even though numbers are not good for the game, it also is not of Tabula Rasa proportions.
For his calc he stated this...
"As of this moment:
* Xfire for WoW = 362,977
* 11,000,000 / 362,977 = 30.3
That gives us a multiplier that we
can use against the AoC number, assuming that there are statistically
as many people running Xfire with WoW (as a percentage) as those who
run Xfire with AoC. Xfire for AoC = 3,687 3,687 * 30.3 = 117,734"
Which I noted started to skew some numbers horribly, with LOTRO having almost 2 million players...as the times were markedly skewed thanks to hours of people playing the latest expansion.
Then he showed this method, and it really worked...
"Using the same logic, but this time with the reported number of users:
* WoW = 11,000,000 / 91,628 = 120.05
Using 120.05 as the multiplier...
* AoC = 942 * 120.05 = 113,087
Why does this seem more feasible? Lets take this equation and apply it to other games.
Guild Wars = 8,236 * 120.05 = 988k overall players within a month period (would be subscribers...)
Ok, so Guild Wars is tough due to the non-sub system they use...
Lets move on...
WAR = 4,284* 120.05 = 514k subscribers...
As we can see here, WAR seems to be in line with how many people have bought the game, and still continue to play according to various evidence.
EvE Online = 3,612* 120.05 = 434k
Is this possible? Could EvE possibly have more players than once thought? It has been noted as one of the 250k+ games.
If we go to Wiki, the last noted data is
"As of March 31, 2008, Eve Online has 236,000 active subscriptions and 45,000 active trial accounts."
It could very well be possible that growth in the subscriber base along with trials going could equal a larger base.
If we look at anecdotal evidence, for example in 2005, CCP noted 60k players. So, we have seen roughly a 4.6% increase in players. So, maybe 1.5 % growth per year. So with almost a year under their belts now, it could be possible to see maybe another 50k? Maybe more?
This one is still questionable, so lets move on.
LOTRO = 2,296 * 120.05 = 276k (always rounding up here folks...)
This still shows the calculation to be workable. So, actually, the numbers still look about right.
It has been noted many times that LOTRO is a 250k game, and this shows that data to corroborate.
It is disappointing it has not grown though is my only issue. The market share is flat for this game. No loss, but no gains either.
But, like everyone says...who cares, it is profitable.
Everquest 2 - 413 * 120.05 = 50k
Interesting set of numbers here. Is it possible the population is that small? With a minimal number of servers, this could be true. Lets say on average 1k-2k per server at any given time, and then average it over a 30 day period, this could be true.
It has been discussed before, and has actually been a sore point (even with Grimwell, who got into an argument with Mr. Woodcock, another number cruncher, when he stated they had less than 100k players...and Grimwell called him a few choice names, and said it is not so, but never gave real numbers.), and even wiki has absolutely no notation of subscribers.
Just for the heck of it, what if we used the first way of calculation noted in my post, based on minutes...
Everquest 2 = 2003 * 30.3 = 61k...
Still about the same area. Quite low, but quite possible.
Interesting to say the least. And it looks quite accurate based on various evidence of sales/vs players, discussion on forums, and popularity.
At least SOE got a good bump thanks to their new expansion Shadow Odyssey.
The latest month end sales charts for November just showed up with this little goody...
- World Of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King / Blizzard / $36 (Average)
- World Of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King Collector's Ed. / Blizzard / $50 (Average)
- Call Of Duty: World At War / Treyarch / $50 (Average)
- Spore / EA Maxis / $48 (Average)
- Fallout 3 / Bethesda / $49 (Average)
- World Of Warcraft: Battle Chest / Blizzard / $34 (Average)
- The Sims 2 Deluxe / EA Maxis / $19 (Average)
- Left 4 Dead / Valve / $48 (Average)
- The Sims 2 Apartment Life Exp. Pack / EA Maxis / $21(Average)
- Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3 / EA LA / $49 (Average)
- World Of Warcraft / Blizzard / $18 (Average)
- The Sims 2 Mansion & Garden Stuff Exp. / EA Maxis / $19 (Average)
- Nancy Drew: The Haunting of Castle Malloy / Her Interactive / $20 (Avearge)
- EverQuest II: The Shadow Odyssey / Sony Online Ent. / $40 (Average)(Average)
- Far Cry 2 / Ubisoft Montreal / $50 (Average)
- World Of Warcraft: Burning Crusade Expansion Pack / Blizzard / $29 (Average)
- BioShock / 2K Boston, Australia / $14 (Average)
- Spore Creepty & Cute Parts Pack / EA Maxis / $19 (Average)
- IGT Slots: Little Green Men / Masque / $20 (Average)
- Assassin's Creed / Ubisoft Montreal / $11 (Average)
Anyways, thought this looked pretty good, and quite workable. I will probably come back when a new game charts (Spellborn? Anybody even heard of that game? Acclaim who?) and see how this compares.
Final caveat. This is North American audiences...maybe UK and AU as well. It is strictly pay for games (why I will probably avoid the awesome and great selling Guild Wars from now on.)
My main reason to do this is simple. 2008 proved to be a bad year for MMO's, and I still wonder if this market is tangible, or if developers are just throwing money out the window.
We will see...and please comment on your thoughts..