Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Digital Dozen: 23 October 2012

The rankings of the top twelve MMORPGs as determined by the players of the Xfire community from play on Sunday, 21 October 2012.  For more details about the methodology, click here.  Historical data can be found here.



Rank Prev Week Game ScoreHours Played +/- %
11World of Warcraft 49.2 50,344-9.1
22Guild Wars 225.726,282-11.5
33Star Wars: The Old Republic4.44,512+0.3
44Aion3.43,526+4.5
57Lord of the Rings Online3.43,453+36.9
65Eve Online3.13,186+4.3
76Metin 22.92,928+3.8
88APB: Reloaded2.12,168+5.4
99Need For Speed World1.81,811+15.2
1010Planetside 2 (Beta)1.61,645+12.2
1111Star Trek Online1.21,269+8.5
1212Vindictus1.21,217+5.0
 
Total MMORPG hours played Sunday: 127,131
 
Usually when 10 out of the top 12 MMORPGs played by the Xfire community see a rise in play the overall hours played rises.  But the two games with a decline in play were Guild Wars 2 (-11.5%) and World of Warcraft (-9.1%), thus resulting in an overall decline of 4.8.% in hours played.  The game seeing the biggest rise in interest Sunday was Lord of the Rings Online seeing an increase of 36.9%.

Lord of the Rings Rides On - Last Monday saw the release of the Riders of Rohan expansion for Lord of the Rings Online, propelling the Turbine product up 2 spots on the Digital Dozen and netting an impressive 36.9% jump in hours played by the Xfire community.  I'm not sure how much of the new content is available to the free players but I don't expect LotRO to drop too much over the coming weeks.

Guild Wars 2 Is Not Dying Yet - Last week I asked if anyone had started asking if Guild Wars 2 was dying due to the double-digit declines in play every week.  Tobold stepped up and argued that no, GW2 was not dying.  I agree and have one reason Tobold didn't cite.
To me, Guild Wars 2 is effectively an expansion, with most players moving from the original game to the sequel.   Considered as an expansion, over 2 million unit sales over the first month puts it in the neighborhood of the Mists of Pandaria sales.  Unlike EA/Bioware and Star Wars: The Old Republic that reportedly required 500,000 subscribers to break even, I would wager that GW2's box and download sales will more than cover ArenaNet's development costs.

Guild Wars was not a failing game with a strong interest from the Xfire community in the six months leading up to the launch of GW2.  Along with the strong sales if ArenaNet can hold onto more players willing to use the cash shop than played Guild Wars by the time the first expansion for GW2 is released, then the game will be a commercial success.

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