Author Topic: Help Me Understand the Numbers?  (Read 4044 times)

Offline CptTrips

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #30 on: March 19, 2023, 01:49:28 PM »
Here's Lusche's player numbers chart, with some events added in for context:

Missed an important one:

October 28th, 2008. 
HTC announced the abandonment of Tour of Duty.

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Offline oboe

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #31 on: March 19, 2023, 02:18:53 PM »
BTW, I like what ya did with that chart.

Thank you, Animal.  Agreed, more than one reason is in play here.   Many people suggest lack of marketing is to blame, but its hard to imagine any advertising campaign that could match (or even come anywhere close to) Steam's results: 40,000 D/Ls in 100 days, with 20,000 new accounts created and entering the arena.  At that point, the player is HTC's to lose, but some combination of factors prevented them from sticking around.

@CptTrips - doh!   I should add that (could that factor be the 'notch' in the 2008 player peak?), as well as the release dates of Aces High II and III.    Also, when did AH drop its subscription price to a flat $14.95/mo from $29.95/mo?

I still don't know what caused the high spike in player count in early 2003.   But that matched the highest peak reached in 2008.  AH II was released in Q3 2003 (or was it early 2004?), so the early peak came before that.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2023, 02:27:38 PM by oboe »

Offline Lusche

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #32 on: March 19, 2023, 02:47:02 PM »

I still don't know what caused the high spike in player count in early 2003.   But that matched the highest peak reached in 2008.  AH II was released in Q3 2003 (or was it early 2004?), so the early peak came before that.


AHII was released June 2004, in tour 53
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Offline oboe

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #33 on: March 19, 2023, 03:21:25 PM »
New version, with AH-specific events included.



Ironic, but it looks like a new release actually drives player numbers DOWN for a bit.  I suppose its due to increased hardware requirements?  I also can't help wondering about the release dates of certain popular aircraft, and how that may have impacted player numbers.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2023, 03:49:33 PM by oboe »

Offline Dadtallica

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #34 on: March 19, 2023, 03:47:39 PM »
What was tour of duty?
Back in 2022 after a loooooong break from 2010. Old name Ratpack, same for the BBS.

Squad I did the most tours with were the Excaliburs then The 172nd Rabid Dogs. Still trying to talk Illigaf, Coola, Oldman22, and Joecrow into coming back instead of being boring old farts!

Offline oboe

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #35 on: March 19, 2023, 03:50:48 PM »
"Tour of Duty" was basically going to be Aces High with a career mode.

https://www.simhq.com/_air/air_059a.html

Offline Nefarious

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #36 on: March 19, 2023, 04:23:54 PM »
Ironic, but it looks like a new release actually drives player numbers DOWN for a bit.  I suppose its due to increased hardware requirements?  I also can't help wondering about the release dates of certain popular aircraft, and how that may have impacted player numbers.

I distinctly remember the system requirement quit posts from both AH2 and AH3. Both times a lot of "Welp, guess I'll quit posts" we're seen.

Missed an important one:

October 28th, 2008. 
HTC announced the abandonment of Tour of Duty.

Not sure how important it was, but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a little bit disappointed - but I'm still here :)

Friday Squad Ops used to be called Tour of Duty - and we even changed the name to Friday Squad Operations when Tour of Duty was announced or sometime thereafter.

Most of those game play settings became available for the players like you to tinker with and it allowed me to have some fun times in the SEA. I Need to start running those again soon.

I think there are lot of factors in the decline of numbers. Game Age, Game Development, Player Age, Subscription Costs, Game Competition (WT, IL2BOX, DCS)... No point in rehashing it.

I think the biggest thing that could help is social media sharing gameplay video. Some tweaks to camera views and in flight recording would go along way into making good gameplay videos.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2023, 04:26:19 PM by Nefarious »
There must also be a flyable computer available for Nefarious to do FSO. So he doesn't keep talking about it for eight and a half hours on Friday night!

Offline Dadtallica

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #37 on: March 19, 2023, 06:18:11 PM »
"Tour of Duty" was basically going to be Aces High with a career mode.

https://www.simhq.com/_air/air_059a.html

Ahhh yes now I remember. I came in around 07-08. What was the reason it was scrapped. Would have been a great way to learn the game. Seems like the missions that are in place now are kinda of that.

Great discussion everyone!
« Last Edit: March 19, 2023, 06:20:36 PM by Dadtallica »
Back in 2022 after a loooooong break from 2010. Old name Ratpack, same for the BBS.

Squad I did the most tours with were the Excaliburs then The 172nd Rabid Dogs. Still trying to talk Illigaf, Coola, Oldman22, and Joecrow into coming back instead of being boring old farts!

Offline Vraciu

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #38 on: March 19, 2023, 06:30:08 PM »
When did AH2 end?
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Offline Dadtallica

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #39 on: March 19, 2023, 06:37:57 PM »
New version, with AH-specific events included.

(Image removed from quote.)

Ironic, but it looks like a new release actually drives player numbers DOWN for a bit.  I suppose its due to increased hardware requirements?  I also can't help wondering about the release dates of certain popular aircraft, and how that may have impacted player numbers.

Nice additions to the chart! Is there any player breakdown by country?
Back in 2022 after a loooooong break from 2010. Old name Ratpack, same for the BBS.

Squad I did the most tours with were the Excaliburs then The 172nd Rabid Dogs. Still trying to talk Illigaf, Coola, Oldman22, and Joecrow into coming back instead of being boring old farts!

Offline Lusche

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #40 on: March 19, 2023, 06:40:05 PM »
Ahhh yes now I remember. I came in around 07-08. What was the reason it was scrapped.



Quote from: Pyro
We had our convention this past weekend which gave us the chance to speak with players in person and talk about the future of AH.  We’ve been thinking about how we were going to move forward and came to some conclusions that we decided to announce at the convention.

The main news is that we have decided to put Combat Tour on an indefinite hold.  The reason for this is that we have decided that it is better to steer our development in a way that allows us to implement our CT developments first as part of the regular game.

The way we’ve been going has been like trying to fight a two front war with only one army.  It’s stretched us too thin and has hurt our overall level of productivity.  It also has handcuffed us in a lot of our development decisions by forcing us to indefinitely postpone a lot of other things.

Our biggest obstacle with CT is in breathing life into it to make it fun and immersive.     While a basic structure is there, there’s a ton of detail work to be done to reach that end goal.  Without it, it just has too much of a cardboard cutout feel that’s not going to engage players and hold their attention for long.

What this all means for now is that we are going to focus on core game development.  We’re going to pull the CT AI mission system and redevelop it for use by CM’s in scenarios and special events.  We’re working on new terrain upgrades in both the technology and the art used.  We want to implement a character animation system.  We want to bring back the old 8 player H2H but expand it both in the number of players and with additional gameplay capabilities.  There’s a lot of systems in the game engine that are dated and in need of overhaul.

In hindsight, this is how we should have approached it from the start.  This will keep us heading in the right direction while getting improvements out to our current players and speeding up our development.  It’s really a chance to reboot our process to get back to our old development cycle that saw things moving at a faster pace.
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Offline Nefarious

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #41 on: March 19, 2023, 06:58:54 PM »
Quote
What this all means for now is that we are going to focus on core game development.  We’re going to pull the CT AI mission system and redevelop it for use by CM’s in scenarios and special events

someone should tell the rest of the CMs...  :rofl

There must also be a flyable computer available for Nefarious to do FSO. So he doesn't keep talking about it for eight and a half hours on Friday night!

Offline Dadtallica

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #42 on: March 19, 2023, 07:49:41 PM »
Thanks Lusche once again!
Back in 2022 after a loooooong break from 2010. Old name Ratpack, same for the BBS.

Squad I did the most tours with were the Excaliburs then The 172nd Rabid Dogs. Still trying to talk Illigaf, Coola, Oldman22, and Joecrow into coming back instead of being boring old farts!

Offline oboe

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #43 on: March 19, 2023, 08:49:27 PM »
When did AH2 end?

The research I did suggested Aces High III was released in Sep 2016, with a Steam release in Aug 2017.  IIRC there was a few months of Beta while both AH II and III were playable, but once III was release, II was no longer supported or offered for download...

Offline Dadtallica

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Re: Help Me Understand the Numbers?
« Reply #44 on: March 19, 2023, 09:34:50 PM »
The research I did suggested Aces High III was released in Sep 2016, with a Steam release in Aug 2017.  IIRC there was a few months of Beta while both AH II and III were playable, but once III was release, II was no longer supported or offered for download...

So was AH 3 when the updated base layouts and strats were introduced. Bummed I missed this launch. What were the big new features?
Back in 2022 after a loooooong break from 2010. Old name Ratpack, same for the BBS.

Squad I did the most tours with were the Excaliburs then The 172nd Rabid Dogs. Still trying to talk Illigaf, Coola, Oldman22, and Joecrow into coming back instead of being boring old farts!