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Player Demographics

HelleriHelleri Felton, CAPosts: 930Member Uncommon

So, this isn't a thread, that I intend to use as a platform for ranting about this subject, lol (to put you at ease)...

 

Just given that threads of this nature pop up frequently enough that it shows people are interested in the topic ( I know some even like to collate any new information gaming studio's/publishers release on this for a better overall picture and reference). I figured I would post a link to a recent dev blog for my MMORPG of choice Runescape:

 

http://services.runescape.com/m=news/mod-mmg-on-myths-and-misconceptions

 

So, in this, the guy who is pretty much the head of runescape development is giving something of a "state of the game" address. In which he mentions What the average player actually is like in several respects. He goes into a decent amount of detail. Says where they are getting their information from (I participated in the survey mentioned. So, I know it's a real thing). And, even supplies some graphical representations (pie wheels, charts etc).

 

I just think it's nice when a company/corporation releases this kind of information. Because, every time one does, we can take that in conjunction with information previously released by other companies/corporations. And, it helps to get a better picture of the industry as a whole.

 

Yes, it's from a game some here might not care about (The subject of runescape is a rather polarizing love/hate thing). But, it isn't a small game either. And, it is also one of the Older MMORPG out there that is still on-going. So, the information might prove of interest to some here.

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Comments

  • ScotScot UKPosts: 5,973Member Uncommon

    Nice find.

    It is good that you occasionally get information like this as it is good for combating myths.

    Remember how we always get told that most players of MMOs are in their 30's and older? 59% of players in Runescape are under 26. 13% of them are under 16, so the next time someone suggests an issue is down to the kids in the MMO, they may well be right.

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  • HelleriHelleri Felton, CAPosts: 930Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Scot

    Nice find.

    It is good that you occasionally get information like this as it is good for combating myths.

    Remember how we always get told that most players of MMOs are in their 30's and older? 59% of players in Runescape are under 26. 13% of them are under 16, so the next time someone suggests an issue is down to the kids in the MMO, they may well be right.

    It could be less 'down to the kids' in Runescape's case, and more 'down to testosterone' in general, lol. Did you see how many males vs. females play?

    Oddly enough though. I think in at least Runescape people are fairly honest about their gender with character selection. You will see about 3x more male characters then female.

    But, actually...it's not that odd. Runescape character models are ugly as sin. So, the normal excuse for a guy playing a girl can't be fairly applied (that being that they would rather look at a female body all day).

     

    [[sorry I edit rather then double post between replies]]

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  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 24,774Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Helleri
    Originally posted by Scot

    Nice find.

    It is good that you occasionally get information like this as it is good for combating myths.

    Remember how we always get told that most players of MMOs are in their 30's and older? 59% of players in Runescape are under 26. 13% of them are under 16, so the next time someone suggests an issue is down to the kids in the MMO, they may well be right.

    It could be less 'down to the kids' in Runescape's case, and more 'down to testosterone' in general, lol. Did you see how many males vs. females play? Oddly enough though. I think in at least Runescape people are fairly honest about their gender with character selection. You will see about 3x more male characters then female.

    Plus, it is just one game. I remember seeing a study showing that the WoW median age is something like 28 or 29. Any numbers on WoW probably will be more representative because it is a much bigger game.

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 14,247Member Rare
    Originally posted by nariusseldon
    Originally posted by Helleri
    Originally posted by Scot

    Nice find.

    It is good that you occasionally get information like this as it is good for combating myths.

    Remember how we always get told that most players of MMOs are in their 30's and older? 59% of players in Runescape are under 26. 13% of them are under 16, so the next time someone suggests an issue is down to the kids in the MMO, they may well be right.

    It could be less 'down to the kids' in Runescape's case, and more 'down to testosterone' in general, lol. Did you see how many males vs. females play? Oddly enough though. I think in at least Runescape people are fairly honest about their gender with character selection. You will see about 3x more male characters then female.

    Plus, it is just one game. I remember seeing a study showing that the WoW median age is something like 28 or 29. Any numbers on WoW probably will be more representative because it is a much bigger game.

    Agreed. Runescape's average player age is due to the fact that it has always targeted a younger audience. 

    "Remember how we always get told that most players of MMOs are in their 30's"

    This doesn't change that. 

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
    "Graphics are often supplied by Engines that (some) MMORPG's are built in" - Spuffyre

  • HelleriHelleri Felton, CAPosts: 930Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by nariusseldon
    Originally posted by Helleri
    Originally posted by Scot

    Nice find.

    It is good that you occasionally get information like this as it is good for combating myths.

    Remember how we always get told that most players of MMOs are in their 30's and older? 59% of players in Runescape are under 26. 13% of them are under 16, so the next time someone suggests an issue is down to the kids in the MMO, they may well be right.

    It could be less 'down to the kids' in Runescape's case, and more 'down to testosterone' in general, lol. Did you see how many males vs. females play? Oddly enough though. I think in at least Runescape people are fairly honest about their gender with character selection. You will see about 3x more male characters then female.

    Plus, it is just one game. I remember seeing a study showing that the WoW median age is something like 28 or 29. Any numbers on WoW probably will be more representative because it is a much bigger game.

    mmmmm...I'd be careful with a statement like that when putting it next to Runescape. I don't think a lot of people who don't actively play realize how active it is. I'd give you some numbers. But, you simply wouldn't believe me (regardless of them being true).

     

    I think it would be more fair to say: That WoW's numbers are more fairly representative of a Subscription game. Yes you can play up to level 20 free but there are restrictions (like the ability to speak, last time I tried their trial).  Whereas, with Runescape you can play for free, indefinitely, and the optional subscription really isn't even worth it until you reach about 1400 total level and have all free play quests complete.

     

    And, that is the principle difference between WoW and Runescape. They are different in a lot of other ways. But, WoW being Subscription and Runescape being Free Play (but lets be fair not as much as it was... these days); That is probably the main reason that they are different in so many ways. And, in a sense this kind of makes the two not fairly comparable to each other for much.

     

    That said there are not too many massive free to plays out there. And, none that I can think of off-hand which have released this kind of information recently. So, what I think is really nice about this; Is that it gives us a glimpse at the other side of the spectrum. And, I think in doing so really does help all that much more in pulling together the big picture.

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  • nariusseldonnariusseldon santa clara, CAPosts: 24,774Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Helleri
     

    mmmmm...I'd be careful with a statement like that when putting it next to Runescape. I don't think a lot of people who don't actively play realize how active it is. I'd give you some numbers. But, you simply wouldn't believe me (regardless of them being true).

     

    And no matter what those numbers are, it cannot be anything but a miniscule part of the market. LoL or WoT are probably (and you can correct me if i am wrong) many times bigger than Runescape, and better data source for F2P games.

     

  • HelleriHelleri Felton, CAPosts: 930Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by nariusseldon
    Originally posted by Helleri
     

    mmmmm...I'd be careful with a statement like that when putting it next to Runescape. I don't think a lot of people who don't actively play realize how active it is. I'd give you some numbers. But, you simply wouldn't believe me (regardless of them being true).

     

    And no matter what those numbers are, it cannot be anything but a miniscule part of the market. LoL or WoT are probably (and you can correct me if i am wrong) many times bigger than Runescape, and better data source for F2P games.

     

     

    Well...okay I will say this. But, before I do it's important to note that this occurred before Bot nuking day and many players readily agree that 80-90% of this was probably gold farming accounts. Some time ago the Runescape website had a counter on it. The counter was counting the number of subscriptions (not sign ups...people paying for membership). They put this counter up because it was close to what they felt was an important milestone. Within a week of the counter going up we saw it hit and surpass the mark they wanted to show. That mark being 200 million subscribers.

     

    Even if 90% of those were gold farmers. And, half of the honest ones were re-subscribers (after having lapsed for whatever amount of time) that is still about 10 million active unique subscribers at that time (which i think was about a year and a half to two years ago now?). And, that doesn't count data from the 07' servers (which were only brought back from a single saved back up copy they found in the building somewhere...the original servers which had ran for years prior are actually lost).

     

    Also, Runescape is now climbing in popularity again. we are seeing daily hundreds if not thousands of new and returning players (I spend a lot of time on f2p newb area helping people get acclimated/re-acclimated). That's since the start of the year..They failed to bring us HTML5. The support to be able to make it for all browsers and optimize it simply isn't there yet. They publicly recognized that they over extended themselves.

     

    And, as an apology (and to keep it from happening again)... they instituted player driven development...We get about a dozen, in game polls a month, at least half of which are taken from player suggestions and feedback. And, what we vote on decides what the dev team focuses on (and in what order).

     

    This has brought people back to the game in epic numbers and helped premote a lot of new player recruitment as well. It seems that so far this year. Things are only getting better. There are only more and more subscribers.

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  • ScotScot UKPosts: 5,973Member Uncommon

    A couple of the very guys I was thinking of when I paraphrased that "most MMO players are 30's +" have turned up. :)

    If you remember I always take these stats with a pinch of salt, whether they predict WoW is dying, P2P is dead, most players are over 30 etc.

    However I am happier with this set of stats because at least we know what MMO the stats come from. In those compilation data sites we are never told where the data came from.

    So the kids are to blame, still stands in my eyes. At least some of the time, depending on the issue at hand of course.

     25 Agrees

    You received 25 Agrees. You're posting some good content. Great!

    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

    Now doesn't that make you feel all warm and fuzzy? :P

  • SephirosoSephiroso Marietta, GAPosts: 1,238Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Scot

    Nice find.

    It is good that you occasionally get information like this as it is good for combating myths.

    Remember how we always get told that most players of MMOs are in their 30's and older? 59% of players in Runescape are under 26. 13% of them are under 16, so the next time someone suggests an issue is down to the kids in the MMO, they may well be right.

    I have never heard that before^ so not sure where you did. I thought it was pretty common knowledge most MMO players are between the ages of 16 and 24.

    image
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  • SephirosoSephiroso Marietta, GAPosts: 1,238Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Helleri
    Originally posted by nariusseldon
    Originally posted by Helleri
     

    mmmmm...I'd be careful with a statement like that when putting it next to Runescape. I don't think a lot of people who don't actively play realize how active it is. I'd give you some numbers. But, you simply wouldn't believe me (regardless of them being true).

     

    And no matter what those numbers are, it cannot be anything but a miniscule part of the market. LoL or WoT are probably (and you can correct me if i am wrong) many times bigger than Runescape, and better data source for F2P games.

     

     

    Well...okay I will say this. But, before I do it's important to note that this occurred before Bot nuking day and many players readily agree that 80-90% of this was probably gold farming accounts. Some time ago the Runescape website had a counter on it. The counter was counting the number of subscriptions (not sign ups...people paying for membership). They put this counter up because it was close to what they felt was an important milestone. Within a week of the counter going up we saw it hit and surpass the mark they wanted to show. That mark being 200 million subscribers.

     

    Even if 90% of those were gold farmers. And, half of the honest ones were re-subscribers (after having lapsed for whatever amount of time) that is still about 10 million active unique subscribers at that time (which i think was about a year and a half to two years ago now?). And, that doesn't count data from the 07' servers (which were only brought back from a single saved back up copy they found in the building somewhere...the original servers which had ran for years prior are actually lost).

     

    Also, Runescape is now climbing in popularity again. we are seeing daily hundreds if not thousands of new and returning players (I spend a lot of time on f2p newb area helping people get acclimated/re-acclimated). That's since the start of the year..They failed to bring us HTML5. The support to be able to make it for all browsers and optimize it simply isn't there yet. They publicly recognized that they over extended themselves.

     

    And, as an apology (and to keep it from happening again)... they instituted player driven development...We get about a dozen, in game polls a month, at least half of which are taken from player suggestions and feedback. And, what we vote on decides what the dev team focuses on (and in what order).

     

    This has brought people back to the game in epic numbers and helped premote a lot of new player recruitment as well. It seems that so far this year. Things are only getting better. There are only more and more subscribers.

    OP you do realize 200 million subscribers total not concurrent right? 200 million subscribers for a game that's been up and running as long as Runescape has is nothing great or amazing. And i saw you claim that this counter didn't count their original numbers but i'm gonna call bullshit on that one. Runescape having more than 10 million concurrent subscribers is also ludicrous. I would believe 10 million active accounts(if being active meant all you had to do was log in to your account at least once in a month) but not 10 million subscribers.

    image
    Be the Ultimate Ninja! Play Billy Vs. SNAKEMAN today!

  • HelleriHelleri Felton, CAPosts: 930Member Uncommon

    I did say previously that It would not be believed...that's my understanding of it. if you don't believe it you don't believe... can't change your mind on that.

     

    What could be said about runescapes active subscribed members is a rough estimation of how many subscirbers play per day. There are 139 servers, and 21 of those are free to play servers. I am bad at math but I think that means around 32% of the people playing at any one time are on free to play servers (members can also log onto free to play servers and often do to loiter and show off their cool gear to f2p'ers so not every on f2p is f2p...but every one on p2p servers is a subscriber).

     

    So, that would mean 68% percent (very rough idea with percentages here again) of the active players on at any given time are subscribers (especially since members servers are always more populated then free play, this is probably an at leas thing. it's likely closer to 70%).

     

    Now I play on any given day or time... i don't really have a regular play time and I've seen the players currently online a lot. It doesn't ever really fall below 20k at any one time (late night where I am). and it rarely goes over 50k (mid day where I am). That should be about an average per day of 35k on at any one time. If the average playtime for a player per day is to be believed (about 2 hours) then you can break a day into 12, 2 hour shifts and multiply the average number of players on at a given time by that.

     

    Which gives us 420k players a day. 285k of which (at least) would be actual paying members...but really it's all just broad guess work. It's soooo dodgy because you have to assume the only things you can assume to get a marginally decent guess. Unless we are told we can't know for sure.

     

     

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  • SephirosoSephiroso Marietta, GAPosts: 1,238Member Uncommon
    That you did, you god damned prophet you.

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  • Cramit845Cramit845 Port Ewen, NYPosts: 348Member Uncommon

    Well I like this idea.  I think more devs should give this kinda information out to their player bases about their games.  Although I don't necessarily think it is in their best interests to do so, which may be why we don't see more games do this.  I don't think the publishers or/and the devs want the general public to know necessarily how well their game is going.  That way they can say whatever they want, in hopes of bring in more players.

     

    just my 2 cents..

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  • HelleriHelleri Felton, CAPosts: 930Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Cramit845

    Well I like this idea.  I think more devs should give this kinda information out to their player bases about their games.  Although I don't necessarily think it is in their best interests to do so, which may be why we don't see more games do this.  I don't think the publishers or/and the devs want the general public to know necessarily how well their game is going.  That way they can say whatever they want, in hopes of bring in more players.

     

    just my 2 cents..

    I can generally agree with that. But, I think one of the reasons they did release this information was because in this case it was good. There is a good portion of the Runescape community who don't like the new look of the game. And, they tend to really sensationalize the idea that the game is coming to an end.

     

    You get this in any MMORPG of course. But with runescape...after the bots were nuked, and there were all these new measures that kept them out for a long time. Players really got to see who was left (as in how many people were actually honest players)...And, it was sparse. It felt like mass exodus even though it was just weeding the garden. And, partly over it, players did actually start to leave. last year the average number of people online barely ever went above 30k...this year it's much improved.

     

    And a big reason for the game recovering and now begining to flourish again (I think at least) is Jagex getting more honest and upfront with it's players. They hired a whole lot of new Jagex Mods to pour over the forums, collate feed back, and bring it to the development team. They have been increasing the amount of player moderators in the game as as well. On player they even gave a job as a jagex mod, and basically put him in charge of social networking. They have stepped it up on the behind the scenes, the month ahead, and patch notes videos on their youtube channel. And increased communication with players on twitter facebook and other social networking sites.

     

    I think their really trying to put in the effort to be worth the interest. And, I think it's really beginning to pay off. This seems like part of that... how many developers can you scream at and never get anything more then a copy paste response? But, Mod MMG probably wanted to show that he is listening to what is said. Which is something it seems you never get to stop proving once you decide to start proving it you know? It's a give a mouse a cookie thing. They started really interacting with the community and in doing so raised the bar on themselves. And, so now at least some degree of transparency feels necessary.

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  • HelleriHelleri Felton, CAPosts: 930Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by greenreen

    Thanks for the data dump. RS population for subbed members they are usually pretty open about. For awhile they only listed the paid members here and it was around 300k regularly. Now they show more stats and have a symbol next to members if you ever want to dig around. I stopped on the last page so if you watch, it increases. You can also view it by monthly and watch for changes.

    http://services.runescape.com/m=hiscore/ranking?category_type=0&table=0&time_filter=0&date=1396905242840&page=27867

    I always think of RS as the little engine that could. They just keep trucking along when people look down on them. They even moved out of the 2d realm and they keep people engaged with less than showy graphics. Other games would love to have the conversion rate they get. It's because their content is for the most part - relevant. They are also tuned into the market of having a portable game. All the other AAA games require you to install beefy programs while their reliance on a browser means the game goes anywhere you do. I think that's how they keep that young audience, kids often go to each others houses and if you are bored, load up that game and show it off. They were also free to play long before it was kool. They never get much credit but every free to play game should have their name in a hall of fame at their offices. lol

    Well...that's not exactly a subscribed number list (the ranks). It really only gives you an idea of how many people merit being on the high scores. You will notice the xp for the last rank (697,574) is 1000. That is total level. Total levels are calculated by adding all the players skill levels together. you would need about level 40 everything to have a total level of around 1000 (higher if your not a member).

     

    So players who have been in the game a while, maybe tried a little of everything, possibly have about half the free play quests done, and might even be in full rune armor (some of the best armor available in free play). Are often not even on the high scores list.

     

    To give you an idea of what that means. I am currently standing at the GE on w2 (busiest place, busiest server - always).  scanning the crowds for total levels displayed (combat level shows when wielded items are unsheathed). About 1/2 seem to be under 1k total level. Now that is on a members server...logging to w3 (busiest free play server)....there it looks to be about 2/3 under 1k total level (most of those also seem to be between 80-750 total level).

     

    ...The rankings don't convey the current number of players. For every person on the high scores. There are potentially 10's who are not. So they are not that great for getting a real picture of how many players there are.

     

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