Redditor u/SanctuaryZ attracted attention on several gaming subs this week for his visualization video attempting to track the most popular MMORPGs ever from the beginning to now. Oh heck yeah, data porn.
Buuuuut before you click, you need to know that the visualization appears to rely almost entirely on the old MMO Data and MMO Population websites, whose sourcing and methodology have always been problematic (in some cases by their own admission, since these numbers are hard to come by). Gamers have flocked to the thread and video comments to point out possible problems in the data as well; you’ll notice issues like the still-immensely-popular Lineage franchise drifting away from the top even as it makes more money than god, multiple games huge in Asia simply missing altogether, the presence of games like Star Citizen, and the inclusion of WoW twice (even Blizzard refuses to give separate numbers). Heck, the MMORPG subreddit flat-out deleted it for spamming. Hah!
“It’s like watching a slow-motion ‘Here Is How To Do Data Wrong’,” MOP’s Eliot quipped.
Even knowing all that, it’s fun to watch the games come and go from the list, even if you know the accuracy is questionable. Don’t go quoting this one as settled fact, is what we’re saying, but enjoy it for the walk down memory lane.