Crowfall’s community frets over low population, but ArtCraft isn’t panicking

    
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One of the biggest MMO Kickstarters of all time and a long-awaited PvP game launched this past week… but you might not know it if you look around at what others are playing.

While some people are indeed playing and enjoying Crowfall, it’s not that many: Some players tallied up the server count and came up with a peak of 3,150 concurrent players during launch week, which was but a very small fraction of the overall registered playerbase (or the even nearly 17,000 players who backed the game).

When this tally was brought to ArtCraft’s attention on Twitter, the studio responded by saying, “We’re taking it slow and steady. Our eye is on quality of the experience we deliver as we drive growth.”

However, Creative Director J. Todd Coleman pushed back against this tally. “Registered emails can’t play (we’re not F2P),” he said on Twitter. “Peak concurrency is usually ~20% of active player base, which means >25% of our backers have already played during peak (more, if your include non-peak hours).”

If you’re still deciding whether or not to purchase and play Crowfall, check out our first impressions and livestream. Worth noting is that ArtCraft has continued spinning up Dregs campaigns as of last night.

Source: Twitter, #2
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Pepperzine
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Pepperzine

I was considering purchasing this game, got to play beta (btw, thanks for key MoP!), and realized it was not the game for me. I’m very glad I got the opportunity to try it out beforehand, if not I would have been stuck without the ability to return it because it’s not through Steam.

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Nate

This game looks very dated as well. I am personally waiting out new world as i alpha tested for over 300 hours. 3k on launch is terrible your still getting new game ppl who bounce around playing new stuff until the newer thing comes. New World launch is gonna hurt them. Im hoping NWs numbers are alot better and with just alpha i know it will be.

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laelgon

The game feels busy enough for me. Consistently running into other players, and it isn’t hard to find PvP. While I don’t know if the the playerbase is enough to sustain the game financially, it doesn’t need tens of thousands of people online to work. They just need enough people to keep the few campaigns running feeling full and active.

Reminds me a lot of Foxhole. That game goes through peaks and troughs of players through it’s “wars” which are the equivalent of Crowfall’s campaigns. Sometimes they’re averaging 300-400 players online at a time, so they close off some of the zones to keep the population up in others. Other times there’s a few thousand online when a big update has released, so they open up all the zones. Crowfall is setup to do the same.

My bigger concern than the actual population is that it falls victim to the “dead game!” death spiral where people have declared already that it’s dead, many of whom haven’t even tried it, so people who would actually enjoy it don’t try it, which leads to a lower population, which feeds the idea that it’s dying.

I do think it will end up going free-to-play eventually, and probably should, but not until a lot of the quality of life stuff gets worked out. Like others who’ve played it have said, there’s a lot of UI annoyances and minor issues that make it feel unpolished, but the core is good.

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Arktouros

My bigger concern than the actual population is that it falls victim to the “dead game!” death spiral where people have declared already that it’s dead, many of whom haven’t even tried it, so people who would actually enjoy it don’t try it, which leads to a lower population, which feeds the idea that it’s dying.

There’s a lot of “bittervets” about the game already, which is kinda funny because the game just released. Essentially from what I can understand essentially the game went through a significant overhauls and people aren’t happy.

I think this is really going to end up a trend of a lot of kickstarter titles where people pay in and back one game, then over the course of 5-6 years of game development of course things end up changing (they do in every game, World of Warcraft was once a single player game called “Thrall’s Adventure” lol) but now you have people invested in that development naturally you’re going to end up with a certain percentage of them upset at you.

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Toy Clown

For a PvP game, I think those numbers are quite good. I wish them the best of luck to help fill this small niche.

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Arktouros

Albion Online has 140,000 daily active users but sure.

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Der Hug

sure but the numbers albion gives away is always different users that log in which does not state how many are online right now. also albion started small too and you still need to consider that like 4k users online does not mean 4k daily users, like not all your playerbase is playing at the same time logically….so it must be quite higher than 4k total users.

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Arktouros

140k daily average users isn’t a bad number at all even if 50% of it was alt accounts logged in for a brief second. Certainly nothing that’s going to put you into the top 3 of MMO gaming but not exactly a “small niche” either.

However if you want a general feel for Albion’s concurrency numbers you can look at Steam Charts cause they launched on Steam and we can see in the last 30 days they’ve had peaks of 12,000+. Naturally like most Steam MMOs that isn’t the whole picture as they have their own originally sold accounts as well as now mobile accounts as well that add on top of that.

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Der Hug

Not saying that 140k daily users is bad… Just saying that 4k online concurrent like crowfall had yesterday does not mean only 4k players 😁

I enjoyed albion quite a bit and I am glad they do well now but it started with quite low numbers, especially a little bit after release. I personally hope crowfall will grow too as we need more games that are different if you ask me. As for now I am having a good time in crowfall so fingers crossed it will stay and grow 🤞

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Arktouros

I mean 3k concurrent isn’t a good look under any situation, if we assume scaling with Albion (12k peaks, 140k DAU) that’s roughly 30k daily active users which still falls below the 50k they said they need to keep things going alright.

This isn’t really me rooting for the game to fail like so many others seem to be “crowing” about just kinda how it is. The changes they need to make vs the speed in which they make them just likely isn’t to occur.

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Der Hug

It was above 4k already 😁 didn’t find anything about that they need 50k tho, just doing some math 10k paying a sub alone shouldn’t be too bad money wise…

But I surely agree that growth would be good and still albion didn’t start with 140k daily as well. All there is is waiting if they get good updates out and the game will grow. I for one didn’t have so much fun in rvr/pvp since daoc and really hope they game will be around and grow.

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styopa

Ouch, 3000 at launch?
That’s….terrible.

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Loopy

3000 was considered to be “High Population” for a server during vanilla WoW days. It’s a perfectly healthy number for the game, if they can sustain it.

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J

I think you are fooling yourself here. It isn’t 2004. That was a single WOW server. This game landed in the middle of a Classic Burning Crusade and Solo. With people streaming AOC gameplay and New World right around the corner.

They are in big fucking trouble.

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Danny Smith

This isn’t a server, its total. And i think the devs said they needed 50k minimum to make it worth it.

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Rav3na3l

3000 can sustain a server sure, but there’s an austrailia campaign, 3 east US campaigns, 3 west US campaigns and 3 EU campaigns and now the gvg is up. Those 3k people are spread out into like 8 or so different places.

I agree that 3000 people could potentially sustain the game but the problem is that the 3000 isn’t being funneled and utilized properly.

Raleigh-St-Clair
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Raleigh-St-Clair

Precisely the point I’ve been making with people. That already small number is spread thin over many servers. “Oh there aren’t THAT many servers!” people retort. And I’m like, uh, yes there is, if we’re only talking 3000 people spread between 10 of them, or more. It’s crazy low stuff.

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Chris Walker

Doesn’t seem like low population. The dregs are hopping. Then again, I’m actually playing the game and seeing it for myself. It’s truly been a blast so far.

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CoreChamber

Honestly feels like a 20 year old game. He had a 2nd chance with Shadowbane and some how made a worse version. Shadowbane had alot of good ideas but was killed by rubber banding and zergs.

They dropped the EVE style progression and your left with a PvP lobby game, with a housing system.

Some people don’t brag about winning, So what am I winning, a timer? Maybe they have plans for a bigger longer map where my recourses mean something. In pvp players can only become so powerful unless you expect them to become power kings and one shot everyone.

No In game guild management. When the game is based around guilds.

Its funny, we got to watch it all, the making. I wish they put the quality and time in their games as they did for the videos of Thomas Blair and Todd Coleman. Those went down hill when they lost that funny skinny guy that used to do them. What was up with the card, shows he’s a bad dev, too convinced that writing a date on a card was gold, thinks DC ONLINE was an achievement.

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Harbinger_Kyleran

Saw it suggested in another site a significant number of people who could have been interested in this game might be staying out waiting for New World to launch.

Several posters agreed the bulk of their guildmates were doing this so perhaps there’s some merit to the idea.

Stefan
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Stefan

Some might but they are completely different games, guild i am in who is active in CF is planning to have a NW chapter, so while there is some truth in there undoubtedly i do not think those people would have stayed in there long after the initial new mmo feeling wore off.

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Ben Stone

New World is pretty but the combat is zzzz. Will be interesting to see how far good graphics but shallow gameplay can take it. Class / build customisation, and combat in general, in Crowfall is much more interesting.

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Robert Mann

Der… you guys wanted an open PVP gankfest, and then are worried about player counts? Yeah, somehow this reads like these players still can’t see the writing on the wall.

You have to have a balance of how open PvP is at a minimum concession for higher player counts. Simply put there’s a very limited group of people that are going to play an MMO that doesn’t allow them to relax at much of any time. If you are going to stress over the numbers not being sky high with such a setup, then you are going to be stressed constantly.

That’s not to say such games shouldn’t be made or exist, but rather that the simple amount of people not interested by one small choice is a huge factor. In fact, the ‘PvP’ games with the highest populations… have those populations mostly in safe areas with minimal or no PvP. So pointing to them is nonsense, because that’s not PvP players so much, but people who want something else in the game.

Which, btw, is a huge untapped market. The number of people who will grind the sandbox elements of a PvP game with little to do, just for the fact that the mechanics of the world are a little deeper than the rest of the genre, should be a huge endorsement toward that idea. Developers, though, have Cartoon Ostrich Syndrome.