Tobold's Blog
Monday, October 29, 2007
MMORPG subscription data

Via I found that the MMOGData site is now hosted by, so I thought I'd post a link for reference. MMOGdata is working in the tradition of the apparently abandoned of Sir Bruce. But I must say Sir Bruce's site was better in that he only counted actual subscriptions. MMOGData on the other hand counts accounts, thus giving Second Life with it's 4 million accounts a 12% market share, although there are only 40k maximum concurrent users and less than that paying subscribers.

What we would need would be a site counting only monthly subscriptions. That would even take down WoW a couple of notches, because more than half of their customers are in China now, paying by the hour. Or even better we could count annual revenues instead of player numbers. Too bad this sort of data isn't available.
No method of measurement is better than the other really until you know what you want to measure.

Counting subscriptions will only be applicable to about half of the games according to the statistics.
As revenue models change or people will have more diversified options on how to pay for these games counting subscriptions may be even less applicable in the future.

I agrre with just counting accounts may not be the best way to measrure player activity in games, assuming that is what one wants to measure.

But what is an active player in that case? Is there a minimum time involved, or just required to log on? Would there a minimum number of logins required during a time period?
Hmm not sure if Bruce did anything much different. Both rely on companies helping and providing data.

Real issue right now is that lots of company either never or selectively report their numbers. WoW has stopped reporting their subscription base since may, and LotRO never provided any to begin with.

Those issues are kind of more sever than the exact counting model, because even base numbers are missing or frozen in time.

I have a lot of respect for the old and new subscription data project because it must be a colossal pain to try to get these numbers out of the companies.
Thank you for this link Tobold. I love these stats and I have been looking for a replacement for Sir Bruce for some time.
This is Mike from Thanks for linking to our story. :)
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