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Worst month for censuses in a long, long time...
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1974ER
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 20, 2010 8:48 am    Post subject: Worst month for censuses in a long, long time... Reply with quote

As the login servers are currently malfunctioning, I am taking a bit of time to observe something, namely the fact that there is a very high probability for this month to be the worst ever in my WCR history, which started in November 2008.

It is already the 20th and I am, as of right now, still over 98 000 behind my 2008 November updates figure and more than 28 000 behind the new ones figure and both of those were accomplished during a partial month.

And the overall results look even worse. Sad The whole monthly top 10 combined totals so far a bit more than 546 000 updates... there have been months during which that figure was easily topped by a single player, on occasion more than one.

Also, Blizzard recently published information that there are now over 12M active accounts. In light of this, I am curious as to why does it seem like our results are declining. Are we losing the people who run censuses... or is WoW only growing rapidly outside US and EU... or is something else happening?

I am interested in hearing other's thoughts on this, so please, discuss. Very Happy
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Hybuir
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 20, 2010 9:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I always admire your self motivation and the standards you hold yourself up to.

WCR gained a following when there was an obvious gap in information. Now with the armory, availability of information, even from apps, people expect it to run by itself, we know better.

The WCR community is self driven and selfless Smile
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Balgair
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2010 2:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is a pretty poor month though, long time since I was 3rd or 4th on the top contributors in a month, doing as little as I have this month (I've played pretty much exclusively on my home server, trying to wrap stuff up on my main characters before Cataclysm), seems like everyone's doing what I'm doing, I think, and not censusing much!

Agree with Hybuir on the likely reasons though, a stats site that requires user contribution in these armory-driven days isn't likely to attract that much in the way of results I think.
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Rollie
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2010 8:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I attribute it to several factors really:

- Post-TBC, server populations are not as wildly imbalanced as when WoW launched. Blood Elves really helped even the odds and interest in WCR even started to wane after that
- Cross server BGs, further reduced concerns of population imbalances as imbalanced servers were able to still fill up queues in a timely fashion
- Less open world PVP, again server imbalances are less of an issue, and there appears to me to be a decline in open world PVP
- Generally less interested WoW population. The game as a whole has been out so long, and gone through so many players, that people generally know more about the game, and there is less research overall. This is easily proven by looking at search insights to wow related searches, as well as declining alexa rankings for even the most popular wow sites (wowhead, curse, wow.com, etc)
- Somewhat comparable stats available to armory crawler sites. While the stats are not as detailed, there are other sites that provide some general stats gathered from armory crawling
- No real new features on WCR. I have been remiss in adding new features to the site to keep people coming back for new data elements

Honestly, I think the biggest factor is just that the WoW population has aged so much and that people are just not that concerned about population demographics anymore.
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Rollie
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2010 8:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's an example of how general interest in wow research online has been waning:

http://www.google.com/insights/search/#q=warcraft&cmpt=q

A link to the search term warcraft and it's decline over the past few years, even lower than the number of searches on warcraft in the year leading up to WoW's release.
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1974ER
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 22, 2010 6:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

@Hybuir: Thank you very much for the kind words, though I really don't have a standard. I just run a little competition against myself every month. Sometimes it goes well, sometimes not, but such is life.

@Balgair: That's what inspired me to write the original post of this thread. At the moment, I spend quite a bit of time doing Hallow's End related things, exploring on my main and trying to sort out the individual characters' inventories, because many are badly lacking bag space after the Brewfest and all the candy of the current event. All of that cuts down on server changes, which in turn reduces the numbers I generate, even though census runs pretty much constantly outside BGs.

@Rollie: There are still exceptions to the imbalance "rule". In terms of balance, EU Silvermoon and Magtheridon are badly broken, the first extremely Alliance heavy, the second heavy on Horde.

Other than that, I pretty much agree. One thing interests me though... Is the number of people who submit censuses going down? I at least assume you have some way of giving me a yes/no type answer, if not actual figures.
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Balgair
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 22, 2010 8:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Magtheridon won't be imbalanced much longer, it's getting the pve conversion treatment shortly, I believe. But yes, there's a few like that, Al'Akir was as well last time I checked over there.
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1974ER
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 28, 2010 1:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Magtheridon is indeed now a PVE realm and new low level characters have appeared.

Silvermoon, on the otherhand is still badly out of whack... and due to Cataclysm / Worgen... is actually more likely to get worse, not better. Sad

On the original topic: I have now barely managed to squeeze my updates figure above the value of November 2008 and though the figure of new ones is still somewhat below the November 2008 one, it's no longer my all time worst. Over all, the monthly top 10s are still both below "normal" results of many previous months. It's starting to look likely that less than 10000 new ones will be enough for lowest spots... and several people are going to get into top 10 updates list with less than 50000 entries, when 50000 often hasn't been enough even for top 11 or 12...
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Balgair
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 02, 2010 5:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well looking over the October stats... in one day yesterday I got enough new characters to be 4th last month Razz Was only 1k short on updates to reach 10th last month also... in just one day. Ok, I got more than I expected to yesterday but still, ouch? Wink

And I've got another submission from yesterday still to be processed... kinda wondering if I broke it since the database has been sitting on 3 minutes before my one for quite a long time... Embarassed
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1974ER
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 02, 2010 4:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually, as I am typing this the queue has almost finished processing the 1st. And you actually crammed enough entries into one day to put you at position 9 on last month's list for the updates. So you didn't break... but considering your figures, you might have slowed it down a little bit. *wink wink* I probably as well, since I forgot to prune the file before shutting WoW down for the day. Very Happy
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Balgair
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 02, 2010 4:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It might not have been just me tbh, been painfully slow all day, and not just around my entries, went from 18:00ish at about 9am this morning to just tipped past midnight now (11pm, so it took 14 hours to process 6 hours of submissions!) Oh well, have to wait till tomorrow to find out what today's submissions have done, on a bit of a censusing binge atm Wink
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 03, 2010 5:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:

Silvermoon, on the otherhand is still badly out of whack... and due to Cataclysm / Worgen... is actually more likely to get worse, not better. Sad


As a long standing Hoarde player on Silvermoon eu, we kinda like the imbalance, makes for a great community feel. The rudeness and disrespect so often seen on the more 'heavily' populated servers is rarely seen on here, so we consider ourselves lucky. Long may the imbalance continue! - although I doubt Blizz is with us on this Razz

Slightly off topic I know. Smile
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1974ER
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 03, 2010 8:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Considering that Silvermoon-EU is a PvE a realm, I suspect that great community is related more to the size of it than the imbalance... in other words, the community would still be great even if the opposite side would be equally small. Smile

Smaller communities can be both a blessing and a curse. From what I read and see, the former applies to the Horde on Silvermoon. Smile

More on topicly, it seems that Balgair is "crusading" to guarantee a better November all by herself, even. Very Happy Good luck with that... and you count on me to provide some backup! Very Happy

EDIT: Some minor typos. :/
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Balgair
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 03, 2010 9:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hehe yeah, thought I'd see how many I can get before I run out of steam Wink A few years back I got over 800k in a month, suspect I'll get bored before I get that far, or get distracted actually playing the game, but should hit 100k with today's entries Wink Theoretically at current rate of progress I can do 1 million but... I'll never sustain this Razz
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 06, 2010 12:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rollie wrote:
Here's an example of how general interest in wow research online has been waning:

http://www.google.com/insights/search/#q=warcraft&cmpt=q

A link to the search term warcraft and it's decline over the past few years, even lower than the number of searches on warcraft in the year leading up to WoW's release.


warcraft is a bad example, by this time people just know where to go and dont search for warcraft, recruit a friend brings new people right to the site 5 years of news posts sending people there etc...

this is what you want
http://www.google.com/insights/search/#q=Warcraft%20census&cmpt=q

Edit: but what i think alot of people expect now is that this site scans the armory to build its data now, and it doesint they visit see it still needs a addon and leave
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 15, 2010 3:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello welcome back. I took up the fight to increase all census data 3 days ago and so far am loving it Very Happy if any of the people involved etc need me to do anything specific census related apart from Most wanted let me know. I will keep doing most wanted in the meantime.
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Bujambi



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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 12:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some possible motives/reasons for the imbalance.

As Rollie said, the game is older and given the game is more casual there is significantly less research and less motivation for players to look into things like this. Even ElitistJerks, which has been more or less the center of raiding information, has suffered since Wrath release to the point the research was no long easily researched. You had to comb through dozens of pages in threads to find what you needed.

Running with that, I think one reason is updating the census is more "tedious" than other things and the average player feel it isn't worth their time. Take WoWhead's data-mining app. It runs automatically and more or less invisibly, and all the player needs to do is click one icon to fire it up, then click one more button to upload all their data to wowhead.com. They even gave you a button to launch WoW, making it more of an incentive to do it each time before playing. CensusPlus still requires players to manually select things, and even then you have to come to the site, sift through directories to find the file and upload it manually. Most players now feel it is a waste of time, so they won't do it.

And I think another possible motive is protection. A lot of players may become protective of their home realm. They like the balance, the BGs, the guilds, etc. to a point they could see census as a means to destabilize all that. If outsiders knew their home realm's exact population, it may entice people to move there and end up throwing their delicate balance off.

Then again that very theory could be the exact reason Blizzard never reveals exact population data for their realms. If they did, it could cause drastic population shifts as people move/transfer/reroll to certain realms and leaving other realms barren or empty. Even then I noticed a few years ago not all realms have the same population caps. I had done targeted census on two realms I know go from High to Locked and measured both sides at the time and they came up with two different numbers.

But despite the battlegroups, linked BGs, RDF, I still think there should be a sense of community on one's own realm. And Census would help ensure that, if people still used it.
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1974ER
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello, welcome and thank you for an interesting post! Smile

Some very good points in your post. One additional point worth noting: Some things (can) have two-way effects.

I am going to speak from purely personal point of view, as this is a case where I certainly can't claim to speak for the WoW population, nor even the WCR population.

As time has passed by, WCR has actually become more important to me than it perhaps was in the very beginning. As those who check the top submissions page fairly often know, I have already been the at top of the all time lists for a quite a while and regularly fall into the monthly top 5, possibly even top 3 (haven't rechecked every month, so I apologize for any minor error in this statement).

I have put in a fairly large chunk of time to gather data, even on realms I don't actively play on. WCR also remembers a lot of things for me. If I need to check on my former guilds for some characters, this is where I come. Need to check someone's claims about former long term membership in a well known raiding guild on a realm I play on? I come here. Want to check someone's claims about time need to go from level x to level y? I come here. Very Happy And so on and on... Very Happy

Censusplus might require a bit more work than some other applications. However, one still can't claim it's hard to use. Very Happy

Protection? Yes, maybe for some people... but other people use the figures we have here as distress calls. I have seen numerous "Help, we are too few!"-style of posts on the official WoW forums... and often, WCR census data has been used to back up the claims. Sometimes correctly, sometimes less so... People don't always notice the claim about "red data" being unreliable due to too little input.

As for Blizzard and the population data. Yes, Blizzard has chosen to keep the data secret. However... there is actually multiple types of data that Blizzard hides... and what is even more interesting, they could publish some of it without having any effect on playerbase at all... If the population cap on let's say EU-Silvermoon's Horde side is 3500, 4000 or even 5000... it doesn't matter, as there rarely are more than about 150 people on even at busy times.

Also, we only see part of the activity... there isn't a single realm in the whole world that has 24/7 coverage from us... and even if there was, we still wouldn't get info on how many existing characters are currently completely inactive.

Blizzard has the passive figures, down to the accuracy of one, I believe. And it's almost certain that they have some sort of monitoring for the activity counts too. Something much easier than: "Hey, you, worker XYZ! Execute the manual /whos on realms 123, 333, 607 and 899, NOW!" Very Happy

As for the sense of community... I have had the luck of finding some very nice ones even before I ever heard of Censusplus or Warcraftrealms. Also, sadly, sometimes a sense of community has a negative backlash. EU-Hakkar and EU-Crushridge are couple of fairly well known examples on the EU side. Both realms have a high number of Italian players. I have seen people kicked from groups just because they come from a certain "undesirable" realm. I have myself gotten kicked out of groups for not being able to speak Dutch, Italian, Greek, Turkish, etc. I find this very sad.

What is even more needed than a sense of community on a realm, is a sense of community as WoW players and human beings, not just as member's of a single guild, realm or nationality. Smile

And thing is... it can work. We, here, are a living, breathing proof of that. American, Canadian, Finn, Swede, German, French, Dane, Italian, Spanish, Russian, South-African, Dutch, Israeli, Turk, Greek... both genders (Yes, there are plenty of female players out there, which I as a male player find a very good thing (female members tend to have a very positive effect on the guild chat channels)), ages from somewhere like 12 to way over 50... multiple religions, colours of skin, from those who make do with very little to those who earn thousands of dollars/euros/whatever per month.

As Rollie likes to say: "Everyone's efforts count!"... In that spirit, let's have another nice day of WoW, censuses, rest, food, sleep, love and whatever else makes your day a good one. Smile

Epic Censi, signing off another wall of text... Very Happy
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Buldiva



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PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 2:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So the data collected for this might be way off? I thought it would give a general overview of the server population.. and activity

There is a hot debate on the wow forums about Cataclysm being too hard for the casual players.. that it now requires a higher skill set that is beyond the capabilities of the Casuals

When I saw the data collected from the last few months of Wrath through to Cata.. it did seem to suggest that the Casuals were right.. That Wow is on the decline since the release of Cataclysm..

I have a few questions.. I really wasnt sure if I should start my own thread or post here.. so Ill post here till someone tells me different

Questions

1.. The information is collected via the mod so we have players on every server running this mod for the data to be collected?

2.. If not.. how is that information updated to show that the data collected is a true representation of all existing servers

3.. If this is a true representation of currentt player activity then Blizzard isnt justified in changing the Wrath style of Progression of Dungeon and Normal instances.. This data can boost the casuals perspective that cata is too difficult.. Is this data valid enough for Blizzard to change the difficult gameplay situation currently ingame?

4.. Or will the "Elitists" Simply burn any comments that uses this sites data as unreliable with info to support this

5.. Does the data only cover EU and US Oceanic servers? I heard that Asia has the largest wow player base that dwarfs the EU or US Market.. some Eliitist might say that the data is skewed because it doesnt reflect the whole global wow community.. besides.. I think that EU and US trends are more relevant because the asan market only has access to Wrath not Cata as yet..
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1974ER
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 5:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll try to tackle at least some of your queries:

1) Not all the time, there are a large number of realms, which have very irregular coverage and several times a year go down to no info available at all status.

2) If you examine the lists of data, you will notice that they are colour coded... red entries mean very poor or no data... and even green level data is not 100% accurate, because absolutely no server has literally 24/7 coverage.

3) In other words, the data here is a fairly accurate, but limited approximation at best, totally off at worst. Also, Blizzard naturally has figures down to accuracy of one. It's just that that data is NOT available to the public and will not be released by Blizzard. I know that people have asked and just gotten a flat "NO!" as an answer.

4) "Elitists" can point out that we don't have perfect accuracy... but even an "Elitist" can't claim that for example EU-Silvermoon is a perfectly balanced server.

5) Yes, the information here only covers EU and US. We don't have figures for Korea, China or Russia.

On an extra note, there were various technical struggles, especially in December, which cut down the numbers here. So you are seeing a shrinkage that wasn't really there at all. Further more, some people who have censused a lot in the past, have taken extended breaks or quit altogether. All such factors have an effect on things. And I don't mean this as a brag, just an observation:

Rollie granted me the honorific "Epic Censi" for a reason. One person can do a lot!

If you like the site and the data we gather here, pick up the addon and help us! Very Happy

Epic Censi, wishing good night! Smile
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