There is no denying that EVE Online numbers are down. As I type this I’m looking at a launcher showing 15583 online. Personally I think CCP is on the right track, and while numbers are down they’ll start going back up with the next expansion. If I am wrong about that, we’re in EVE’s end game. There are reasons to be optimistic though. The steps CCP has taken are good ones…
- The return of expansions is a bigger deal than people make it out to be. Checking EVE Offline you can see spikes of new player signups within a couple days of each expansion release. Even the expansions that sucked. People need a reason to sign up and properly marketed expansions do so.
- Citadels are a very good thing to put into a possible make or break expansion of EVE. The concept of Citadels is easy to market, easy to understand, and easy to put in an engaging cinematic. Some things such as ship rebalances and complex gameplay fixes just don’t lend themselves to marketing campaigns.
- While Fozzie Sov was a let down, CCP gets a great chance to tweak things with the new structures. I really like the system thats been put out there for killing citadels. It gives capitals a role and provides a driver for large fleet combat.
Basically all the ingredients are there for the right gameplay to come together with the right marketing opportunity. The stars may actually be aligned for this one. I’m gonna be optimistic this time. I say CCP keeps its usual 10% of the trial spike long term and we get a good number of resubscribes.