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How much will current MMO's suffer when SWTOR launches?

MMO.MaverickMMO.Maverick WonderlandPosts: 7,619Member

While surfing some sites that monitor player activity for some information I was after, I noticed a worrying trend. It looked like all the AAA MMO's showed signs of decline in player activity. I did some comparisons with saved data I had, and yes, this seemed definitely the case:

- WoW showed an activity decrease of 40-50% compared to its Xfire and Raptr numbers in March of this year (18-20k players versus about 35k in Xfire)

- Aion, LotrO, GW, heck, even EVE showed a decline although not as much as some other MMO's.

- The worst was maybe Rift: where in March Rift in Xfire showed like 30k player hours/day at its peak and 5k players, to now barely 3k player hours/day and 600 players in Xfire. Raptr and Steam show a sortlike trend for Rift, albeit somewhat less drastic (a current 20% of Rift's launch month activity level in Raptr)

 

I did some cross verification to further check the data: overall Xfire activity showed a slight drop compared to earlier this year, but nothing that could justify such significant decline to those MMO's, also other games like LoL and MW series showed quite an increase in both Xfire as well as Raptr.

I also checked the Rift server list, even at peak times as good as all of them stay on medium setting, with a number of them never even changing from their Low status, and Low status for a Rift server has been shown to mean that the player population doesn't reach higher than 300-400 players logged in. A Rift server can have 403 players logged in and already get the Medium status, in other MMO's a Low status server  usually still reaches 700-800 concurrent users at peak times. I also did some head counts in some servers of other MMO's, and the PCU figures (peak concurrent users) seem to show the same drop in player activity that Xfire and Raptr already showcased.

 

I can only conclude that across the board player activity and sub numbers for the main MMO's are in decline, even of the ones that seemed to do well, with maybe an exception for DCUO who has jumped to fairly high activity levels after its F2P move, at least for now.

This is even without any major AAA MMO title arriving on the scene for the past 6 months.

 

Which makes me wonder: if all those current MMO's show signs of decline now already, how will it be when SWTOR launches? And after SWTOR, followed up by a TSW, a Firefall, an ArcheAge, a GW2, a TERA, a Blade & Soul, and a Planetside 2 in 2012?

I think the MMO landscape will look radically different in its top segment at the end of 2012.

 

So, what do you people think? How much do you think the current MMO's will suffer in player activity and sub figures after SWTOR's launch and in the months that follow?

The ACTUAL size of MMORPG worlds: a comparison list between MMO's

The ease with which predictions are made on these forums:
Fratman: "I'm saying Spring 2012 at the earliest [for TOR release]. Anyone still clinging to 2011 is deluding themself at this point."

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Comments

  • BACONXBACONX Wellford, SCPosts: 236Member

    I am starting to see the effects on my server. It was never a high popualtion server but I have noticed trends in the AH, Meridian's crowd and over all, wait times for PVP/LFG. The Final prognosis can't be stated but I do feel there will be server merges within 3 months if the trend keeps up. Rift really needs a healthy population to be fun and dynamic, if this dries up, many that will stick out Star Wars will be forced to leave later or suffer a Telara that has few invasions and/or invasions that can't be stopped.

  • uohaloranuohaloran ., GAPosts: 811Member

    Figure it'll just spread people out more.  Doubt anything drastic is going to change -- it shouldn't, at least.

  • zevni78zevni78 grimsbyPosts: 1,133Member Uncommon

    I do feel we are at the start of a new phase in mmo trends,  i was hoping it would start this year with dcuo and others, but rift was good, but only for a few months, not a years long experience, such as i hope GW2, SWTOR, TSW, AA, etc will be.

     

    However the drop in pop for sub and even some "Free" 2 Play mmos could be a result of harsh economic times.

  • KeoghKeogh Los Angeles, CAPosts: 1,099Member

    I read a news item on a gaming industry site that gave some estimates on projected North American player loss of WoW subscriptions due to SWTOR launch. Unfortuneately, I don't remember the numbers or the website. I think the item estimated that WoW could lose 500,000 subscribers too SWTOR. Don't quote me on that, but the number was high as I recall.

     

    Zevni, has a point. The weak world economy isn't helping. Remember, even free to play require an often, expensive internet connection.

     

     

    "Don't corpse-camp that idea. Its never gonna rez"
    Bladezz (The Guild)

  • elockeelocke Manassas, VAPosts: 4,205Member Uncommon

    The real question is which MMO is going to go F2P next?  As long as they stay away from SOE's craptastic example and adopt preferably Lotro's or Lineage 2's models, this could be a good thing for some games. I know I personaly would keep playing Rift during the 2012 game storm if it was free, same with WoW.  I think WoW won't, it's too proud to change but Rift could and it might be healthy for it.

    Then again, it could just be the economic woes the world is experiencing causing this drop this year.  Which means it has nothing to do with the games themselves but with how much they cost to play.

    image
  • tank017tank017 Glendale, CAPosts: 2,192Member

    I really think that the MMOs out now will dip once TOR launches.

    Though once ToR saturates in the market throughout a year,people have played through the game extensively,we'll start to see some trickle back to older MMOs as people will want to go back and check out new content etc.

     

    MMOs just don't have the staying power anymore like they used to.

  • farmerfredfarmerfred blahville, CAPosts: 46Member

    Originally posted by MMO.Maverick

    While surfing some sites that monitor player activity for some information I was after, I noticed a worrying trend. It looked like all the AAA MMO's showed signs of decline in player activity. I did some comparisons with saved data I had, and yes, this seemed definitely the case:

    - WoW showed an activity decrease of 40-50% compared to its Xfire and Raptr numbers in March of this year (18-20k players versus about 35k in Xfire)

    - Aion, LotrO, GW, heck, even EVE showed a decline although not as much as some other MMO's.

    - The worst was maybe Rift: where in March Rift in Xfire showed like 30k player hours/day at its peak and 5k players, to now barely 3k player hours/day and 600 players in Xfire. Raptr and Steam show a sortlike trend for Rift, albeit somewhat less drastic (a current 20% of Rift's launch month activity level in Raptr)

     

    I did some cross verification to further check the data: overall Xfire activity showed a slight drop compared to earlier this year, but nothing that could justify such significant decline to those MMO's, also other games like LoL and MW series showed quite an increase in both Xfire as well as Raptr.

    I also checked the Rift server list, even at peak times as good as all of them stay on medium setting, with a number of them never even changing from their Low status, and Low status for a Rift server has been shown to mean that the player population doesn't reach higher than 300-400 players logged in. A Rift server can have 403 players logged in and already get the Medium status, in other MMO's a Low status server  usually still reaches 700-800 concurrent users at peak times. I also did some head counts in some servers of other MMO's, and the PCU figures (peak concurrent users) seem to show the same drop in player activity that Xfire and Raptr already showcased.

     

    I can only conclude that across the board player activity and sub numbers for the main MMO's are in decline, even of the ones that seemed to do well, with maybe an exception for DCUO who has jumped to fairly high activity levels after its F2P move, at least for now.

    This is even without any major AAA MMO title arriving on the scene for the past 6 months.

     

    Which makes me wonder: if all those current MMO's show signs of decline now already, how will it be when SWTOR launches? And after SWTOR, followed up by a TSW, a Firefall, an ArcheAge, a GW2, a TERA, a Blade & Soul, and a Planetside 2 in 2012?

    I think the MMO landscape will look radically different in its top segment at the end of 2012.

     

    So, what do you people think? How much do you think the current MMO's will suffer in player activity and sub figures after SWTOR's launch and in the months that follow?

    It sounds like the MMO playerbase is getting burned out on the mechanics of MMOs if MMOs are in decline with no new MMO launching.

  • Mythios11Mythios11 Paterson, NJPosts: 129Member

    WoW is losing players simply because it's over seven years old.  SWTOR will certainly add to the bleeding in WoW but Rift will probably take a bigger hit percentage wise since a lot of players I know look at Rift as sort of a filler game between WoW and SWTOR or GW2.

     

  • MaheretMaheret New JerseyPosts: 16Member Uncommon

    eq2 is going to get hit VERY hard, I see it already. The latest xpac isnt going to help it either.

  • goldenkeygoldenkey chesterfield, VAPosts: 98Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Keogh

    I read a news item on a gaming industry site that gave some estimates on projected North American player loss of WoW subscriptions due to SWTOR launch. Unfortuneately, I don't remember the numbers or the website. I think the item estimated that WoW could lose 500,000 subscribers too SWTOR. Don't quote me on that, but the number was high as I recall.

     

    Zevni, has a point. The weak world economy isn't helping. Remember, even free to play require an often, expensive internet connection.

     

     

    I read a stock analyst report that downgraded Blizzard stock to neutral from buy due to an expected loss of 1.2 to 1.9 million Subs to SWTOR.

  • KidonKidon SesimbraPosts: 395Member Uncommon

    By the end of 2012 SWTOR will be the new MMO king.

  • DarLorkarDarLorkar Texarkana, TXPosts: 700Member Uncommon

     

    TLDR  games will drop from 5-15% in subs for 30-60 days. Then get some back but not as many as left.

     

    I think the way people look at games is changing, or maybe they are being redifined.

    I look at it as 5 main types or subsets, with quite a bit of intermingling in some of the areas.

     

    We have people looking for social: as in they will stick to a game, sometimes for years, not so much for the game, but for the other people they play with.

    Raiders Min maxxers, people that want to be the best. Beat everything.

    We have the gamers that treat all games as single player games, no matter the type. As in they will buy a game spend  the 30 days, and for a few maybe 60 days in it and move on.

    Gamers that will buy games, mainly long after release, both single and MMO type,and console as well,  but will not pay subs, ever. F2P and places like Steam that have many sales get lots of these, and i think this is a larger segment than most think.

    And finaly dabblers:) (my own description) people that use FB , and many other types of places, mainly browser games. But  do from time to time stick their toes into the other subsets as well.

     

    So if this is true, then SWTOR will get a few % of #1 from all other games of this (thempark) type games. From WOW rift so on.

    Some of #2 

    Vast majority of #3 the buy pretty much everything new then move on.

    few of #4

    And again a few of 5.

    In the end,  games will drop from 5-15% in subs for 30-60 days. Then get some back but not as many as left.

     

  • XthosXthos Columbus, OHPosts: 2,628Member

    Probably 10% of WoW may try it, 2.5-5% may stay, and then various others, a lot of people that are trying it aren't playing a mmo atm (like me).

    SWTOR has 2-3 months to make it lasting mark, hopefully they can prove to people that they can upkeep the game and improve it on the fly, for a title that is launching as big as it is...If they fail, they will begin to lose numbers, and other mmos that people are looking at start to roll out.

     

  • WebferretWebferret AdelaidePosts: 82Member

    Originally posted by Kidon

    By the end of 2012 SWTOR will be the new MMO king.

    Now that made me laugh.

     

    All MMO's always take a dive when a new MMO comes out. And like al it will retain some and lose alot as the game continues over tis first 3 months. I myself tested SWTOR and no thanks, Found it complete rubbish (I am a Star Wars fan - Grew up on the original movies) But this I feel imo will go the same way as the old Star wars MMO.

    The issue today is the MMO market is so flooded with games, holding a massive player base is getting harder and harder every month, and with many going F2P, paid MMO's suffer even more.

    In the end, play the MMO that you enjoy, since your the one paying/spending the time to level a toon in it.

    I do wish SWTOR all the best for its release, but I myself shall be sticking to the MMO I play.

    Cheers

    Tanvaras

  • Shatter30Shatter30 Waterford, MIPosts: 485Member Uncommon

    Its fact that WOW has lost subs over the past year to year and a half, a million if not more and thats without any other major MMO's coming out (although Rift was a fair size MMO) which means people left due to boredom or similar reasons.  TOR is the first large scale MMO to come out since WOW with huge pre-order numbers, it will make a signifigant dent in WOW(and yes other MMO's).     

  • TardcoreTardcore MinskPosts: 2,325Member

    They won't suffer. These days old or sh*t MMOs never die, they just free to play.

    image

    "Gypsies, tramps, and thieves, we were called by the Admin of the site . . . "

  • DLangleyDLangley Beaumont, TXPosts: 1,407Member

    Stay on topic please. This is about the subject outlined in the OP, not about what you want to see in the game.

  • OdyssesOdysses Anacortes, WAPosts: 581Member

    I think WoW is going to lose players on its own irregardless of SWTOR, although it will obviously pull numbers away from the game with the largest playerbase.

    Rift will probably be hit extremely hard by TOR.   The numbers have been declining steadily for a while now and TOR should really create a massive hole since IMO Rfit doesn't have enough depth to retain players against high profile alternatives.

    Eve and Lotro will be fine since they have large dedicated followings.

  • AshlindeAshlinde Boise, IDPosts: 120Member

    honestly i think you will see WOW lose around a million subs directly because of SWTOR. not a huge deal for that game. beyond that, the game is hemorraging subs as it is due to it being bad now IMO. so, meh [Mod Edit]

    honestly i think SWTOR will be the end of RIFT. it will definitely be hit the hardest. RIFT will either go free to play or be forced to shut down +/- 6mo from SWTOR release. I just dont see it withstanding this release. SWTOR is a better game in almost every way, so there is no reason to continue playing.

    FF14.... well nobody really plays it as it is, and with SE implementing a sub in january i think that game is already DOA. It will not retain enough subs to continue operation.

    other MMOs are now free to play, so i dont really think we will see SWTOR affect them. it will only have an impact on paid MMOs.

  • zimboy69zimboy69 chicargo, FLPosts: 372Member Uncommon

    i seriously hope not the game looks like a  snooze fest

    if it was new and exciting with lots to offer lots of good ideas (new and old ones ) it would be really welcome

    , but nothing ive seen in all the vids has even made me want to order it

     

    image

  • teakboisteakbois Parlin, NJPosts: 2,154Member

    Originally posted by Tombill

     

    . Odd isn't it ? So the only logical conclusion is that ALL. Mmo's lost the same %

     

    Which I have been saying for ages.

     

     

    The MMORPG formula is DATED. Certainly in the Wow like ones.

     

     

    That is my logical conclusion and it will be the exact same thing 6 months after the launch of SW TOR. Because frankly pre recorded VO and some listening to dumb plastic NPC's is not exactly world changing either. Certainly not in ON LINE games that should be played in the long term with PLAYERS instead of listening to PUPPETS and their dull premade stories.

     

    Of course SWTOR will fligh high in the first weeks. But the true value of on line play is in its staying power. You'll have the exact same discussions in 6 months time, and ask why swtor lost "all those first month players".

     

    While the VO may not be a huge deal on paper, one of the biggest reasons (probably the #1) for Rift's retention woes is because the game was not engaging.  The world was generic and bland, even the class abilities were generic and bland.  Sure, it was pretty and you had freedom in building your character, but it lacked flair.  Couple that with the world being tiny and everything crammed in tight and it just made it easy for people to abondon their character.

     

    Now SWTOR still suffers a ot of the drawbacks.  The races sure are tame considering its star wars.  The world itself isnt any more full of life than Rift, in fact it might even be less.  But combat is at least as good, and the abilities are more fun (subjective, yes).

     

    But the VO is engaging to most.  It lets you play out your character with his options.  Dealing with your companions actually gives you a greater sense of RPG.  By the time you get to max level you will care about your character a heck of a lot more than Rift.  That should give Bioware the headstart it needs to improve the endgame (which none of us really know for sure how it will be) as well as flesh out the rest of the game (which rift failed to do).  SWTOR is already far ahead of Rift in crafting, the flashpoints (for most) are more fun.

     

    I still dont know if it will suffer from the 3 month burnout that Rift did, it probably will to some extent.  But i think the drop will be less severe.  in stead of losing 60-70% it might lose more like 40-50%.

     

     

    As for the real point of this thread?  Its impact on other games will be smaller than predicted, but still very noticable.  i think 500k NA/EU WoW subs is right, thats about 15%.   Rift may or may not suffer greater, as it was originally for a large percentage a holdover MMORPG until SWTOR.  but i think a lot of those people have left already.

  • teakboisteakbois Parlin, NJPosts: 2,154Member

    I can also see MoP offsetting the WoW loss by the end of the year.  I think once people see MoP in action the idiotic Panda hate will subside and people will actually realize its a pretty cool direction to take the game storywise.  Definitely better than the Deathwing nonsense (which sounded much cooler on paper then in game).  Antagonist being opposite faction as opposed to some dragon that flies around and rarely gets noticed.

     

    However, if they dont fix the endgame somehow the people they gain back will just leave again.

  • Moaky07Moaky07 Flushing, MIPosts: 2,096Member

    Originally posted by tank017

    I really think that the MMOs out now will dip once TOR launches.

    Though once ToR saturates in the market throughout a year,people have played through the game extensively,we'll start to see some trickle back to older MMOs as people will want to go back and check out new content etc.

     

    MMOs just don't have the staying power anymore like they used to.

    I would agree, except with the sidenote that players dont hang as long as they do with their first love IE MMO.

     

    An experienced gamer sees the MMO repitition, where the new gamer discovers the shinies for the first time. Thus that new gamer will hold on longer.

    I was done with MMOs back in 06. If not for SW/BW, I wouldnt play another one. Five years of EQ was enough. The one good thing is that with such a break inbetween, and the story lines, it should keep me for a bit longer.

    Asking Devs to make AAA sandbox titles is like trying to get fine dining on a McDonalds dollar menu budget.

  • HerodesHerodes DannenbergPosts: 1,494Member

    How much will futur... ok, I stop it. :)

  • kaliniskalinis Dexter, MEPosts: 1,428Member

    I think wow will see a few millon leave till mop comes out , I think rift might lose a few also but in the end bioware is bringing alot of galaxies players despite there oh god it isnt galaxies and bioware fans to this game.

    Star wars fans as well . So alot of the population will be new mmo gamers much like wow brought in tons of gamers to wow 

    I do know a bunch of wow players coming to tor though but wow might make it up in the countries they expand to

    As for the worlds i liked them. I found myself a bit starry eyed as i was playing in star wars unviverse. Never understimate what playing in the star wars universe means to payers

    Not everyone cares if they hear crickets chirping as they walk around. Its star wars man thats all that matters.

    I found myself going wow this is star wars and im playing a sith or whatever class i was and i found the story to be enjoyable enough to pull me in and actually care about my character 

    So while tor has some issues, character creator , ui customization , they wont keep players from flocking to tor. many of them new gamers that havent ever played an mmo before.

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