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Author Topic: Vanguard is live.  (Read 48133 times)
eldaec
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Reply #245 on: February 02, 2007, 10:23:44 AM

So smaller than, for instance, WoW.

Now there's a pointless metric you can use to suit any agenda.

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HaemishM
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Reply #246 on: February 02, 2007, 11:18:52 AM

Color me completely unsurprised that some dodgy numbers confirm what I predicted: VG just isn't going to sell well.

Look, even if his numbers are so wildly inaccurate as to be half the true numbers (i.e. 160k subscribers instead of 80k), that's still not great numbers compared to what the Brad claimed they'd be. I'm quite sure they are numbers SOE won't be happy with. If those numbers don't improve dramatically, I'd say we can call it a failure from the subscriber numbers. Now whether it's profitable is the real test, and we'll never know.

Sky
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Reply #247 on: February 02, 2007, 11:53:50 AM

Although I admit a bit of curiosity about the game as an explorer...I just read an interview saying they are targeting 20% of the game to solo players. That cured my weakness right quick. I'm sure it's just coincidence the game with 80% soloability has 7 million accounts.

Nebu
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Reply #248 on: February 02, 2007, 12:03:00 PM

Color me completely unsurprised that some dodgy numbers confirm what I predicted: VG just isn't going to sell well.

Look, even if his numbers are so wildly inaccurate as to be half the true numbers (i.e. 160k subscribers instead of 80k), that's still not great numbers compared to what the Brad claimed they'd be. I'm quite sure they are numbers SOE won't be happy with. If those numbers don't improve dramatically, I'd say we can call it a failure from the subscriber numbers. Now whether it's profitable is the real test, and we'll never know.

I think this will give you the outcome you've been wanting as well; Brad should be unlikely to garner this type of financial support for another project in the future.  That is unless investors are too stupid to know better. 

"Always do what is right. It will gratify half of mankind and astound the other."

-  Mark Twain
Hound
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Reply #249 on: February 02, 2007, 12:29:18 PM

Color me completely unsurprised that some dodgy numbers confirm what I predicted: VG just isn't going to sell well.

Look, even if his numbers are so wildly inaccurate as to be half the true numbers (i.e. 160k subscribers instead of 80k), that's still not great numbers compared to what the Brad claimed they'd be. I'm quite sure they are numbers SOE won't be happy with. If those numbers don't improve dramatically, I'd say we can call it a failure from the subscriber numbers. Now whether it's profitable is the real test, and we'll never know.

I think this will give you the outcome you've been wanting as well; Brad should be unlikely to garner this type of financial support for another project in the future.  That is unless investors are too stupid to know better. 

never underestimate the stupity of people
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Given the number of failures we've seen in MMORPGs, designers need to learn it's hard enough just to make a fun game without getting distracted by unnecessary drivel.
Murgos
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Reply #250 on: February 02, 2007, 12:40:34 PM

I don't think 100-150 thousand players for the first week or so of launch is all that bad.

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Nebu
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Reply #251 on: February 02, 2007, 12:43:58 PM

I don't think 100-150 thousand players for the first week or so of launch is all that bad.

We'll know how many are real now that they need codes to log in.  I'm sure we won't get any straight numbers from the station pass, but box sales may say something. 
« Last Edit: February 02, 2007, 02:49:12 PM by Nebu »

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HaemishM
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Reply #252 on: February 02, 2007, 01:23:41 PM

I don't think 100-150 thousand players for the first week or so of launch is all that bad.

It shouldn't be. It should be fantastic.

But this is SOE and Brad McQuaid. McQuaid predicted 400k and up, which we all knew was bullshit. I'm sure SOE didn't want to add another 150k subscription game unless they bought it for a song. The game's been through 2 publishers, cost a lot of money I'm sure, and probably won't make back that money quickly. SOE needs a hit after the SWG NGE fiasco, EQ2's lackluster numbers and EQ1's declining numbers.

Special J
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Reply #253 on: February 02, 2007, 03:25:31 PM

That much?  Didn't EQ2 launch with around that many?  Did he honestly think his name carried more weight than SOE and EQ?
Arthur_Parker
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Reply #254 on: February 02, 2007, 03:28:20 PM

Nobody has said "2nd most expensive mmorpg ever" for quite a while.
HRose
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Reply #255 on: February 02, 2007, 03:52:36 PM

I think this will give you the outcome you've been wanting as well; Brad should be unlikely to garner this type of financial support for another project in the future.  That is unless investors are too stupid to know better. 
Investors ARE stupid.

Should I remember you how many licences Turbine got after Asheron's Call 2 failure? Should I remember you that Netdevil after the Auto Assault failure started to work on TWO new mmorpgs and got more founding?

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Nebu
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Reply #256 on: February 02, 2007, 04:01:17 PM

Investors ARE stupid.

Should I remember you how many licences Turbine got after Asheron's Call 2 failure? Should I remember you that Netdevil after the Auto Assault failure started to work on TWO new mmorpgs and got more founding?

Maybe this is your incentive to create a design document.

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jpark
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Reply #257 on: February 02, 2007, 04:05:31 PM

Although I admit a bit of curiosity about the game as an explorer...I just read an interview saying they are targeting 20% of the game to solo players. That cured my weakness right quick. I'm sure it's just coincidence the game with 80% soloability has 7 million accounts.

Hmm... is that 20% of the finished portions of the game? ;)

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Morat20
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Reply #258 on: February 02, 2007, 04:16:22 PM

Investors ARE stupid.

Should I remember you how many licences Turbine got after Asheron's Call 2 failure? Should I remember you that Netdevil after the Auto Assault failure started to work on TWO new mmorpgs and got more founding?

Maybe this is your incentive to create a design document.

"Hi. I'm Brad, creator of EQ and Vanguard, games just like World of Warcraft, which has 8 zillion players. Give me 60 million dollars, and I'll make another.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2007, 08:50:52 PM by Morat20 »
Trippy
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Reply #259 on: February 02, 2007, 06:29:35 PM

I don't think 100-150 thousand players for the first week or so of launch is all that bad.
It shouldn't be. It should be fantastic.

But this is SOE and Brad McQuaid. McQuaid predicted 400k and up, which we all knew was bullshit. I'm sure SOE didn't want to add another 150k subscription game unless they bought it for a song. The game's been through 2 publishers, cost a lot of money I'm sure, and probably won't make back that money quickly. SOE needs a hit after the SWG NGE fiasco, EQ2's lackluster numbers and EQ1's declining numbers.
Brad didn't say he thought he could get 400K the first week.
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Reply #260 on: February 02, 2007, 08:17:36 PM

9pm EST, friday night, out of 10 North American servers, 7 are medium load and 3 are high load.

Hound
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Reply #261 on: February 02, 2007, 08:44:41 PM

from the MMORPG.com forum

Quote
just went over to the Vanguard Players site and did a search for players adv level 1-50 all servers, any class, any crafting/diplomacy rating and it came back with 177,230 players. Now how many are alts, and how many are on buddy key accounts. I usualy have 1 or 2 alts just to reserve names myself, and I think every box had one buddy key and some had ten. How many boxes were sold, I dunno but it was a heck of a lot less than 177,230.

 60,232 were lvl 1's

 43934 were between lvl 2 and 5

 46,946 were between 6 and 10

 25, 220 were between 11 and 20

the rest between 21 and 50

My guess is around 35,000 boxes sold plus or minus 5000. The lvl 1's are obviously alts to hold names, as are a lot of the lvl 2 - lvl 6 characters. You have to figure  at least 50% of the toons between lvl 6 and 50 are buddy keys, GM's etc.

edit Falconeer- high medium and low are arbitrary and they could have high set at 5000 players or 1500 players and we would never be the wiser so that really does not tell us much.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2007, 08:48:04 PM by Hound »

Given the number of failures we've seen in MMORPGs, designers need to learn it's hard enough just to make a fun game without getting distracted by unnecessary drivel.
Ixxit
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Reply #262 on: February 02, 2007, 09:41:50 PM

Well if that person on the mmorpg.com forums was playing the game he would realize that the data on the Vanguard players site is not updated in real time.  For example my main character that is level 9 is being reported on the site as still being level 7, which is two days ago

But hey everyone's a mmo pundit right?   

I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser Gate.
d4rkj3di
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Reply #263 on: February 02, 2007, 10:05:28 PM

They stopped showing actual server numbers shortly before the open beta. One day there were around 3000-3500 on both the PvE's and 1800 on the PvP. The next day the PvE's showed as Medium and PvP was Light. My guess would be around 150k put down 5 or 10 bucks to get into Pre-Launch, and after this weekend 100k of those might actually purchase and play for the 30 days that come with the box. After 30 days, you can probably take another 50% off that number. But what do I know, I'm just some guy on the internet.
Azazel
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Reply #264 on: February 02, 2007, 11:18:29 PM

Also, the people who bought by digital download are probably still waiting for their downloads to finish, which is about 40 gigs right Falconeer?   :-D

I heard it was 40 + 20GB

Remember the 20+20 thing came from Geldon...


Although I admit a bit of curiosity about the game as an explorer...I just read an interview saying they are targeting 20% of the game to solo players. That cured my weakness right quick. I'm sure it's just coincidence the game with 80% soloability has 7 million accounts.

Comparing Vanguard (or anything else) to WoW is unfair though. Especially if WoW's NA playerbase is like 2.5 million. Also, when working out numbers like this there's also a few hundred thousand Oceanic players who are on the NA servers, so I have no doubt that we get mixed into the "North American Players"

Not defending Vanguard so much, as pointing out that the 8m argument is a bit spurious when you're pointing out Western sub numbers. Which is why all the speculation about Warhammer hitting 4 million or 6 million etc is laughable. (And I'm a big fan of the IP).

I don't remember Brad or anyone else suggesting they'd hit 400k in the first week. Anyway, the interview quoted/linked here a week or so ago had those numbers revised down to 200k, which again isn't their hope for initial box sales, but as a stable subscriber base, which we won't start to see really for 6 months or so.



« Last Edit: February 02, 2007, 11:28:19 PM by Azazel »

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HRose
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Reply #265 on: February 03, 2007, 04:03:23 AM


Brad didn't say he thought he could get 400K the first week.

A side effect of an "hardcore" game is that it will age worse. The subscribers growth will fall sooner.

In WoW the solo friendly design helped the longevity a lot because the game is built so that you can have a good experience even if you aren't part of the initial "rush" on the server. The fun experience is well preserved.

Vanguard will probably have a much harder time to grow subscribers in the mid/long term as the grind when there aren't players around will feel much harsher. Being more "group friendly" makes the game vulnerable to lack of players, off-peaks and so on. The longer leveling curve will also build much bigger gaps and it will take ages for a new player to join his friends and play together.

These kinds of barriers are overlooked RIGHT NOW. But I'm sure they'll become a major factor later on.
« Last Edit: February 03, 2007, 04:05:41 AM by HRose »

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Reply #266 on: February 03, 2007, 04:52:33 AM

I agree with HRose. Whoda thunk it.

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Reply #267 on: February 03, 2007, 05:18:28 AM

I disagree only because those barriers need to be looked at RIGHT NOW. I was playing at a peak hour and there were maybe 8 newbies in the area I was in. You could smell the suck. Every game could really learn something from newbie Isle in EQ2 (OR EVEN ATiTD).
Azazel
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Reply #268 on: February 03, 2007, 05:24:35 AM

I'll go with HRose now as well. It doesn't seem to me that he's saying that it doesn't need to be looked at, just that as the game gets older it will become a more and more glaring problem that people are overlooking right now, since people are (mostly) gathered around a similar set of levels. Of course the catasses will take off, but when Mr Average VanGuard gets to level, 30 or so, and his mates want to play too, then it will really him them all that they're schafted.


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Simond
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Reply #269 on: February 03, 2007, 05:44:27 AM

These kinds of barriers are overlooked RIGHT NOW. But I'm sure they'll become a major factor later on.
Also, it's going to be interesting to see what happens once the good:bad class breakdown stabilises and people start trying to reroll FOTM alts. Slow non-group advancement + twinking restrictions + limited server populations = Profit?

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Hound
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Reply #270 on: February 03, 2007, 07:17:24 AM

Well if that person on the mmorpg.com forums was playing the game he would realize that the data on the Vanguard players site is not updated in real time.  For example my main character that is level 9 is being reported on the site as still being level 7, which is two days ago

But hey everyone's a mmo pundit right?   

They update that data base every 24 hours, so that data would have been good at whatever time Friday morning they updated the database. I just went and did the search myself and as of right now it listed 197, 665 total characters of which 65, 954 are level ones and 82, 404 are between lvl 6 and lvl 50. With one buddy key per regular box and 10 buddy keys per collectors box I would think it is very safe to assume that less than 50K boxes were sold.

the link to the players site http://vgplayers.station.sony.com/characterSearch.vm

Given the number of failures we've seen in MMORPGs, designers need to learn it's hard enough just to make a fun game without getting distracted by unnecessary drivel.
eldaec
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Reply #271 on: February 03, 2007, 07:21:12 AM


Brad didn't say he thought he could get 400K the first week.

A side effect of an "hardcore" game is that it will age worse. The subscribers growth will fall sooner.

I certainly agree that growth will drop off sooner, but equally there will be less churn. Anyone still will VG in six months will likely stay a while because of guild links. Account numbers will drop to sub 100k next year, but will remain stable for a fairly long time.

See also: UO and EVE.

"People will not assume that what they read on the internet is trustworthy or that it carries any particular ­assurance or accuracy" - Lord Leveson
"Hyperbole is a cancer" - Lakov Sanite
Hound
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Reply #272 on: February 03, 2007, 08:17:59 AM


Brad didn't say he thought he could get 400K the first week.

A side effect of an "hardcore" game is that it will age worse. The subscribers growth will fall sooner.

I certainly agree that growth will drop off sooner, but equally there will be less churn. Anyone still will VG in six months will likely stay a while because of guild links. Account numbers will drop to sub 100k next year, but will remain stable for a fairly long time.

See also: UO and EVE.

the game will have to get a over a 100 K before it will drop to 100K.  I seriously doubt it will ever get above 75K myself, and that is allowing for a generous number of the buddy key players to roll into a full blown subscription. With other more polished and finished MMORPGs on the immediate horizon I would think Vanguard is doomed to an existence of being EQII's homely cousin.

edited because of a Freudian typo
« Last Edit: February 03, 2007, 08:20:13 AM by Hound »

Given the number of failures we've seen in MMORPGs, designers need to learn it's hard enough just to make a fun game without getting distracted by unnecessary drivel.
Rodivar
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Reply #273 on: February 03, 2007, 08:42:22 AM

Vanguard history,

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_SUvL4MOQQw

I got this link from someone else on another forum,  I wish I had been the first to find this.
« Last Edit: February 03, 2007, 08:54:32 AM by Rodivar »
Miasma
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Reply #274 on: February 03, 2007, 10:37:39 AM

Heh, nice video.

As far as I can tell they didn't do much advertising or PR before launch either.  That Warhammer press week thread is huge with dozens of interviews, videos, screenshots, previews and the game isn't even coming out for many months.  I wonder if they even tried to generate buzz.
raydeen
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Reply #275 on: February 03, 2007, 01:00:09 PM

Vanguard history,

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_SUvL4MOQQw

I got this link from someone else on another forum,  I wish I had been the first to find this.

That's friggin' brilliant. Kudos for bringing it here.  :-D

That being said, I do have some interest in Vanguard if only for the whole big as a whale world it seems to have. My favorite gaming moments come from the Elder Scrolls games (Arena and on up) and the fact that the vastness of it all really made you feel like it was real. I won't be trying it though until there's a free downloadable trial. I've reached the point where I'm reluctant to spend money on a box and CD with the knowledge that I may have just bought pretty cardboard and a drink coaster. All MMO clients should be free to download with the option to buy. As it is, I have EQ, CoX, PSU, and WoW on my gaming plate. I don't want to spend any more moolah than I have to if the game isn't fun or my cup o' tea.

I was drinking when I wrote this, so sue me if it goes astray.
Ixxit
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Reply #276 on: February 03, 2007, 01:11:43 PM

Gamespot has a "hands on 1st week writeup" on Vanguard.  Does a great job summing up it's strengths and weakness.  Sorry to report  no univeral panning here.


http://www.gamespot.com/pc/rpg/vanguard/news.html?sid=6165077&om_act=convert&om_clk=newlyadded

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SnakeCharmer
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Reply #277 on: February 03, 2007, 03:02:15 PM


I lasted a whole week in VG with the slideshow effect, and boring monotonous quests.  I can't help but start falling asleep when I play it.  It's just....Boring.

As someone who generally vehemently despises fantasy genre MMO's, the odd side effect of VG is that it's actually making me want to play WoW.

Go figure.
Morat20
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Reply #278 on: February 03, 2007, 03:46:48 PM

I certainly agree that growth will drop off sooner, but equally there will be less churn. Anyone still will VG in six months will likely stay a while because of guild links. Account numbers will drop to sub 100k next year, but will remain stable for a fairly long time.

See also: UO and EVE.
Hey! EVE's growing. :)
HRose
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Reply #279 on: February 03, 2007, 05:28:58 PM

I certainly agree that growth will drop off sooner, but equally there will be less churn. Anyone still will VG in six months will likely stay a while because of guild links. Account numbers will drop to sub 100k next year, but will remain stable for a fairly long time.

See also: UO and EVE.
Both of these have relatively narrow gaps between noobs and veteran players. You can play together right away.

-HRose / Abalieno
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