|Rank||Prev Week||Game||Score||Hours Played||+/- %|
|1||1||World of Warcraft||38.9||32,029||+11.3|
|2||2||Guild Wars 2||22.1||18,221||+34.6|
|3||3||Star Wars: The Old Republic||10.2||8,411||+4.2|
|7||7||The War Z (Alpha)||3.3||2,741||+9.9|
|8||8||Lord of the Rings Online||2.9||2,404||+13.6|
|12||--||The Secret World||1.9||1,534||+316.8|
The beginning of the Christmas season apparently means playing video games as the members of the Xfire community spent 11.3% more time playing MMORPGs on Sunday than they did the week before. Ten of the twelve games saw increases, led by The Secret World (316.8%), Guild Wars 2 (34.6%) and Maple Story (+13.6%). The two games experiencing losses were Planetside 2 (-23.2%) and Aion (-6.1%).
'Tis The Season - Christmas is coming and various holidays are springing up throughout the virtual worlds. Perhaps the most successful of these so far is Wintersday in Guild Wars 2, with the Xfire community spending an extra 34.6% more hours in the game Sunday during the first weekend of the event. Even games without an in-game holiday like Eve Online are offering gifts to players. Did the return of snowballs to New Eden help keep the numbers up this weekend?
One game looking to buck the trend is Star Wars: The Old Republic. EA/Bioware have no plans for an in-game event and will give out no gifts. However, new items are being added to the cash shop. How will players react to Scrooge?
Buy To Play - The Secret World edged back into The Digital Dozen this week on the strength of changing its business model. Many people thought Funcom should have released the game without a subscription and players responded when the game became buy-to-play. The question is how many players will stick with the horror/conspiracy niche game.