CCP’s Hilmar Petursson says EVE Online isn’t in ‘stagnation’ – it has an active playerbase of 300K


GIbiz got a monstrously huge interview with CCP Games’ Hilmar Petursson thanks to the EVE Online company’s presence at Reboot Develop this month – so far, we’ve covered how the studio says it’s regrouping after all its post-EVE failures and how EVE Online is destined to be huge in the East. The latest piece out on Petursson’s comments, however, focuses on EVE’s tech and community.

Specifically, he tells GIbiz, running the game is like running a city, such that CCP creates the map and lets the players create the drama, but the “mayor” knows only that “the traffic light patterns need changing when there are one hundred citizens stuck in an unmoving line of cars.”

The problem, as he puts it, is that EVE Online’s underlying technology is old, such that when thousands of people – of its 300K active userbase, 10K new people per week – throw themselves into pitched battle, “the technology absolutely is at its breaking edge […] absolutely at its brink.” It wasn’t even what the game was originally built to do: “The technical feat it takes to make [a huge battle] run on computers is way less than the social engineering feat on behalf of the EVE players that even makes this a problem to begin with.”

Of course, as we’ve covered, CCP Games has been working with other tech companies to boost the number of people who can participate in these types of dramatic battles, as seen in the company’s GDC stunt earlier this year in partnership with Hadean. But really, every older MMO can relate, and every old MMO is fighting the perception that its tech is decrepit and its playerbase is dwindling. Here’s Petursson with my favorite quote:

“It has existed for 16 years and people think it’s in stagnation. But that’s the story with a lot of these long running franchises; it’s like a river that flows through, and there’s a bottom layer of people that stick, and over time there are layers of generations of EVE players that keep on being added every single year.”

Source: GIbiz

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Rolan Storm

“And I am telling you why we have to play it. The way things going in a few years it will not be around anymore. So it is time to say proper goodbye.”


Gee, from 500K (which was their top claim) in 2013 to 300K now.
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Yep, CCP and EVE Online is very healthy and heading in the right direction…oh, wait…

Anton Mochalin

40% decline in 6 years for more than 10 y.o. game means it is really healthy. Your chart shows that 300k is still more than the game had in 2008 i.e. 5 years after launch.

Raven Knight

Don’t trust anything he is saying, sorry but ccp is on a full court press to get word out that although despite top talent leaving and it being sold off to a Korean company, and recent controversy regarding ccp getting emo(geek punks) and trying to ban a real life congressman over metagaming..we see how that crap went didn’t we…ccp is so full of crap..they still haven’t beaten their own records and the alpha program just blurrs the numbers even further….ccp you are a one trick poney…a serious investment wasted.


I would not believe anything coming out of this guy’s mouth

Iscobibble The Alien

I too often count alt accounts to make up stories to look successful. Smh 😔

Loyal Patron

its 300K active userbase, 10K new people per week

That is one hell of a lot of user churn.

And yes, you can be totally stagnant with 300K users. Just look at WoW, which has way more than that.


Back in the day 300K active accounts equated to 300K paying subs.

These days figures like this are just marketing weasel words unless CCP provides a proper definition of what an active account is.

Nosy Gamer

If EVE really has 300,000 active accounts, that would be an interesting number. Back in March 2015, someone at CCP made an “Oops!” with some data and the nerds pulled out the spreadsheets and started doing some estimating on the number of active accounts in EVE. I came up with between 319,000 to 342,000.

So if my estimate was right, and Brendan seemed to think I was in the ballpark, I think a figure of 300K accounts wouldn’t really count as accelerating growth. And as Wilhelm points out, that 300K accounts is the high point of the range Hilmar has given recently.

Gotta say, though, 200K – 300K accounts for a game that turns 16 in a couple of weeks is pretty good. Especially since the international server (everywhere but China) had an estimated 400K accounts at its peak 6 years ago.


Remember, it’s 300k active accounts now, not 300k paying subscribers. It’s a deathknell for a game when it goes f2p and the numbers stagnate anyway, and i really hope CCP stops pretending that everything is fine.

This is especially important as i believe that the ratio of multiple accounts has risen dramatically following alpha clones, exacerbating the situation even more.

Raven Knight

That’s exactly what he is doing lying thru his teeth, no way eve has 300k active players when the most ever to log into tranquility was 64k…he lying out his ass and playing mind games..they can’t be trusted

Danny Smith

Doubt (x)

Wilhelm Arcturus

Around the time of the Pearl Abyss sale Hilmar said “The MAU fluctuates a bit, but it’s 200,000 to 300,000 people,” so 300K monthly active users seems to be the peak, not the norm, as might be inferred from this article.

Also, I am pretty sure you need to substitute “accounts” for “people” or “users” in the case of EVE Online.

Still, not bad for a game about to hit the 16 year mark that has non-consensual PvP, a feature that keeps many people from even bothering to give it a look.


Its in no stagnation but 300k is a hyperbole. A playerbase of 100k+ is what should be closest to the truth. Its a great game for sandbox/scifi fans and it is actually less hardcore than it gets advertised for.