Ultima Online Published Subscription Numbers

Discussion in 'The Kingdoms of Old' started by Razimus, May 20, 2015.

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  1. Razimus

    Razimus Avatar

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    The UO numbers were published in countless newspaper articles and books, here's a small amount of them. I could google search all day but I'd rather do other things with my time. Any more research and I'll need to ask for an upfront payment of $100.00 an hour, thanks.

    What you see here is the result of literally 5 minutes of google searching, I just got home from work, 5 minutes of googling people, 5 minutes.

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    https://books.google.com/books?id=ctlfMiMTIz4C&pg=PA234&dq="ultima online" "subscriptions"&hl=en&sa=X&ei=Zj9dVe_CIcThoATD_oPIDA&ved=0CCwQ6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q="ultima online" "subscriptions"&f=false

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    https://books.google.com/books?id=90ujNvzJNMoC&pg=PA172&dq="ultima online" "subscriptions"&hl=en&sa=X&ei=Zj9dVe_CIcThoATD_oPIDA&ved=0CDMQ6AEwAg#v=onepage&q="ultima online" "subscriptions"&f=false

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    https://books.google.com/books?id=0IZAW_CQTaAC&pg=PA14&dq="ultima online" "subscriptions"&hl=en&sa=X&ei=Zj9dVe_CIcThoATD_oPIDA&ved=0CEMQ6AEwBQ#v=onepage&q="ultima online" "subscriptions"&f=false

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    https://books.google.com/books?id=8H8bzqj6S4sC&pg=PA166&dq="ultima online" "subscriptions"&hl=en&sa=X&ei=Zj9dVe_CIcThoATD_oPIDA&ved=0CFcQ6AEwCA#v=onepage&q="ultima online" "subscriptions"&f=false

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    https://books.google.com/books?id=z3VP7MYKqaIC&pg=PA21&dq="ultima online" "subscribers"&hl=en&sa=X&ei=KT9dVYKPBsGoogT6-oHQBw&ved=0CB0Q6AEwAA#v=onepage&q="ultima online" "subscribers"&f=false

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    https://books.google.com/books?id=6xuuAgAAQBAJ&pg=PA24&dq="ultima online" "subscribers"&hl=en&sa=X&ei=KT9dVYKPBsGoogT6-oHQBw&ved=0CCMQ6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q="ultima online" "subscribers"&f=false

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    https://books.google.com/books?id=z1HkdZLxN6wC&pg=PT194&dq="ultima online" "subscribers"&hl=en&sa=X&ei=KT9dVYKPBsGoogT6-oHQBw&ved=0CC8Q6AEwAw#v=onepage&q="ultima online" "subscribers"&f=false

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    https://books.google.com/books?id=SEJaAgAAQBAJ&pg=PA16&dq="ultima online" "subscribers"&hl=en&sa=X&ei=KT9dVYKPBsGoogT6-oHQBw&ved=0CDsQ6AEwBQ#v=onepage&q="ultima online" "subscribers"&f=false

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    https://books.google.com/books?id=mvuUPxXyB7AC&pg=PA330&dq="ultima online" "subscribers"&hl=en&sa=X&ei=KT9dVYKPBsGoogT6-oHQBw&ved=0CFQQ6AEwCQ#v=onepage&q="ultima online" "subscribers"&f=false
     
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  2. Dean478

    Dean478 Avatar

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    I know it's anecdotal, but I do remember hearing that 0.25 mil figure around the time of Age of Shadows which was that period.

    UO did well. :)
     
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  3. Tazar

    Tazar Bug Brigade - Bug Hunter

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    None of which are official sources and none of which even appear to list where their information comes from. I stand by my statement. EA does not and has not released subscription numbers.
     
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  4. Razimus

    Razimus Avatar

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    I suspect the numbers come from computer games analysts like Bruce Woodcock
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bruce_Woodcock_(computer_games_analyst)

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    https://books.google.com/books?id=0OHVdwE5Kb0C&pg=PA53&dq="ultima online" "subscriptions" Bruce Woodcock&hl=en&sa=X&ei=hD5eVdqgN8O5oQTkyoLoAQ&ved=0CB0Q6AEwAA#v=onepage&q="ultima online" "subscriptions" Bruce Woodcock&f=false

    This isn't additional research, in the 5 min google search yesterday this was the one I left off due to the 2004 date, I was specifically focusing on Sept 97 (Launch date) to July 2000 (Trammel launch).

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    If the numbers weren't accurate, EA never complained about them. To be so widely reported among so many experts I doubt they are inaccurate. The published numbers from various sources provided align perfectly with this chart. The 10 or so examples here are the tip of the iceberg there are probably 100 examples archived in google books. The numbers are always the same, never surpassing 250. Going from 0 to 50k to 100k in a very short amount of time, UO was the Ultima IPs most successful title. Even though some don't consider it an Ultima, I heard an interview by Garriott who said he believed it was an Ultima. And I believe it was too. It was just a radical online version, the lack of quests was annoying for the traditional single player Ultima fan but the charm of the new genre with the sandbox style was enough to draw in non-Ultima fans.
     
  5. DarkStarr

    DarkStarr Executive Producer Moderator SOTA Developer

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    I am very clearly saying I cannot confirm that those numbers look correct to me based on my direct knowledge <wink>
     
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  6. Net

    Net Avatar

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    Such a tease, give us the real numbers;)
     
  7. Umbrae

    Umbrae Avatar

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    Analysts very typically have differing opinions and predictions. They extrapolate numbers to justify their predictions in a similar fashion of exist polls and other statistics. EA would probably make the statement "we do not comment on speculations or rumors" when presented with questions about these numbers, but would ignore them outright unless directly questioned. In the end they would only feel it necessary to comment if this represented the product as failing or damaged their marketing or brand.

    In the end one must expect sources so data can be considered based on how it was derived. However, even then "interpretations" of the data - and any possible meanings or trends - is highly speculative. I find this kind of data interesting, but statistics like this can be spun to mean anything you want. Kind of like Nostradamus quatrains.
     
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  8. StrangerDiamond

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    It would be about time to set a few wiki articles straight I guess... somehow this is very relevant to our "trust" in this dev team since they're the ones that brought the UPWARDS curve. Every detail helps in building trust, so we begin to invest in stretch goals.

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    The PEAK for trammel rather looks like a small bump in the road...

    And yes EA stopped publishing subscription numbers, when they started being shy about it, previous to that, they were quite PROUD of Origin's success and didn't hide it.
     
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  9. Tazar

    Tazar Bug Brigade - Bug Hunter

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    I can't help but note the footnote on the first chart in your last post... the one that says numbers are approximate - ie: Not exact - estimated - thought to be close to - I am not sure why you feel it to be accurate. I go back to my original position. EA has not released subscription numbers. You now claim that EA never complained about the numbers in the MMOG chart - but I did hear many comments on them from UO staff and producers stating that they were not accurate. Maybe they were close, but I don't think we'll ever know since there are no official numbers.

    Just because the quoted numbers are the same does not make them accurate. Everyone trying to write something about it will search for what they can find... and if the first one to estimate the numbers published those numbers, then that is what later researchers will find and use.
     
  10. E n v y

    E n v y Avatar

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    I don't think it really matters if they are 100% accurate/official. When there are many different sources suggesting very similar numbers then the likelihood of them being there are there abouts is reasonably good.

    I don't really see the point in debating what killed UO in terms of Fel and Tram......UO suffered attritional loss of players as alternative games appeared. Various controversial publishes also drove a reasonable sized player base onto free servers. What was left was an empty Fel with small skirmishes between the same players; Tram filled with PvMers that gradually reduced over time (better PvM games) with the overall population looking sparce not being helped by excess land.
     
  11. Razimus

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    The game probably lost subs due to the fact that it was 2-D, in my opinion one of the most amazingly drawn 2-D games ever made, but I was there and the second Asheron's Call, EverQuest, DAoC came out many flocked to the 3-D games. I didn't think of 2-D as being dated, back then I saw the 3-D as being dated, but finally 3-D is beginning to not look too dated. I am liking the 3-D improvements of SOTA.
     
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  12. StrangerDiamond

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    All my friends played those 3-d games... but they made me nauseous and I much prefered the stability of isometric view... never could play.

    I did an exeption for WoW because it was so beautifully done and I was a blizzard fan, until I hit level 40 something... then I quit to return to UO freeshards and even went back to EA twice never to look at blizzard ever again.

    My playtime on EA servers was amazing, almost better since I had seen what atrocity other games were... and how commercial and uncool their core concepts.

    Why nobody ever talks about the constant hacking UO was subjected to ? And EA's blocking of all the third party programs that could have helped ?

    Politics, politics... this is just a bad day it will pass... *shakes head*

    PS- I also like SotA's graphics and style, exept the camera when you go inside a confined place, which makes me very motion sick and unwell.
     
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  13. Poor game design

    Poor game design Avatar

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    :)
     
  14. TEK

    TEK Legend of the Hearth

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    Interesting bit here is that Pre Trammel UO was STILL gaining subscribers even before the UO:R expansion. In other words, the boost in subscribers had little to do with the "it's not a mirror" Trammel but everything to do with the new expansion. The decline in UO subscribers you can definitely make the argument that is was due to the reality that Trammel ruined a lot of what was unapologetically unique about UO.
     
  15. StrangerDiamond

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    I think there is also somethig to learn about War Hammer online... anyone knows why they almost reached a million and then, CRASH ?!

    And how amazing that people play second life... this chart really dosen't reassure me too much :/
     
  16. Duke Aventine

    Duke Aventine Avatar

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    That was a pretty amazing crash indeed. Honestly I think the marketing team killed that game by over-hyping it, creating expectations that were very high, and then that led to the fall. Warhammer had fun character classes and PVP, IMHO. But the PVE implementation around the realm vs. realm scenario was just quite lacking. Warhammer just surprised people too much vs. what was advertised. One of the benefits of a crowd funded game that is different, it would seem, is bringing the audience along with the game as it is born, shaping expectations over time, building a loyal fan base with expectations that match up to the game eventually. Versus launching a game that then hugely surprises the expectations of a recruited fan base later.
     
  17. Xultun

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    ^^ pretty much this and if i remember correctly a slew of nerfs just after launch that made most classes bad to play unless using a cookie cutter style and failure to implement (complete abandonment) in time what had been promised to those that had beta tested while ignoring the community as a whole that had good improvement suggestions.
     
  18. TantX

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    I remember I had that $100 or whatever it was to pre-order, was so excited for WAR, and then:

    1. Not all classes available for launch;

    2. Only 1 capital per faction instead of per race; and

    3. No troubadours to wander Altdorf with voice actors reciting humorous plays.

    I canceled my pre-order.
     
  19. Chaox

    Chaox Associate Producer SOTA Developer

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    Always near me here at work:

    [​IMG]
     
  20. Duke Gréagóir

    Duke Gréagóir Legend of the Hearth

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    To me this is gospel for the numbers!!
     
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