Monday, March 4, 2024

February 2024 Activity In EVE Online

With the next EVE Online expansion scheduled for sometime in the second quarter of 2024, the game hopefully will retain the players the developers attracted over the last three expansions while shifting focus to null security space. With the ramp up to the next, as yet unnamed expansion just around the corner, how has the Havoc expansion performed so far?

Jester's Graph, 1 March 2023 to 29 February 2024

Looking at Jester's average concurrent user graph, the EVE player base is acting similar to last year. The 7-day rolling average is hovering around 23,000 accounts. While down from its post-Havoc launch peak of around 24,500, the game is still significantly up from the approximately 19,000 recorded during the run of the Viridian expansion.

Pearl Abyss' 2023 financial performance

Don't minimize the financial effect such activity has on CCP Games' finances. As we learned from Pearl Abyss' fourth quarter 2023 earnings call, quarter-over-quarter, EVE IP revenue was up 24.3% to 19.9 billion ($15.1 million). Year-over-year, revenue was up by 15%. If the trend continues, CCP Games will continue to shine before investors, hopefully meaning any cuts will pass over the developers in Reykjavik. Hilmar, though, will still need to move his office to a different location.

We may have a new metric for the health of the game: low sec player deaths. For the 14th time in the past 16 months over 200 thousand player-owned ships died in low security space. Year-over-year, the number of ships destroyed, 219,598, almost matched the previous year's total when leap year after accounting for leap year. For the year, ships are dying in low sec at a slightly faster clip than in 2023.

One area with huge growth was ratting in null security space. The 183,576,926 NPCs that died at the hands of players was a 32.4% increase in the number racked up in February 2023. The continued growth in PvE is helping to fuel CCP's revenue growth.

What I've seen over the last few months is evidence CCP has gotten low security space in a much better place after years of neglect. But with null sec economic activity expanding after the Scarcity Era, the switch in development focus to null sec after three low sec themed expansions makes sense. Hopefully whatever ideas the developers have for null sec will work out as well as the ones introduced in Uprising, Viridian, and Havoc.

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