February in Review

The Site

The site managed another meaningless milestone.  The total page views passed the 2 million mark earlier in the month.  I heard some other site hit that mark as well.

In celebration (oh boy) I will break out actual numbers and share them with you.  Click on the chart to see it in full, readable size.

Semi-Raw Numbers for Your Amusement

It is generally my policy not to go on too much about numbers, since, seen in the perspective of any real sites actively seeking traffic, my own numbers are tiny.  But sometimes it is just interesting to see how things are doing.

For those interested in time lines, but too lazy to add up the numbers, the site passed the 1 million page view mark in March of 2010.  At that point, I did the same thing, and pretty much all the same statements apply nearly two years later, so I’ll just copy and paste them

WordPress.com only keeps track of page views and not daily unique visitors.  However, I have used some third-party tracking for that at times, and uniques seem to run between 70-80% of page views on any given day.

This also does not count anybody who reads via RSS only.  Following the philosophy of creating a blog that I would want to read, I push all the content out on the feed, rarely ever putting something behind a “more” prompt. [This remains true on the RSS feed even when you see “more” on the actual site, which I have started doing for very long posts.]

Judging from what WordPress.com and FeedBurner tell me (because I have two RSS feeds, just to make sure I can’t get any consistent information) anywhere between 3 and 10 times as many people view any given post via RSS compared to the number of people who actually click on it.

Then again, since I rarely hide any of the content, most people just go to the main page to read any given post, so it is tough to get any real measure of how much RSS might change my page view numbers.

All of which I can sum up by saying I don’t really know how many people read this blog, but it is a lot more than I thought ever would.

I still do not know how many people really read the blog, but it remains a lot more than I ever imagined.

One Year Ago

It seems like only a year ago that I was declared influential.  Glad to see we got over that at last.

Hulkageddon IV came and went.  We all survived.  And then there was the new character creator in EVE.  It had… options.

LOTRO had a welcome back event… even though it is free to play.

There was yet another sign of the coming apocalypse.

NetDevil got pulled out of LEGO Universe.

Nintendo was banging the drum for Pokemon Black and White.  We were certainly ready for it at our house.

Van Hemlock was slumming back in MMOs for a bit.

I was taking a look at the holy trinity of roles through a historical lens.

The instance group was still playing World of Warcraft.  Now we just get nostalgic about it.

World of Tanks.  It was in beta and set some sort of bogus record.

Rift was getting ready to launch.  People were freaking out in the absence of calm words.  Personally, I wasn’t buying into the game.  Who needed a WoW clone when we had WoW?

Nostalgia was officially on with the launch of the Fippy Darkpaw Time Locked Progression server.  Characters were rolled.  Low level zones were crowded and experience was slow.  But the tour was a go.  We hit the Qeynos Hills, Blackburrow, West Karana, and the Qeynos SewersImportant spells were rediscovered and camping trips were planned.  Not everything was as we remembered it, but it made for a pretty darn good nostalgia adventure.

And while that was going on, SOE shipped Destiny of Velious for EverQuest II.  But I couldn’t be bothered.

And, finally, one of our cats was on top of the refrigerator.

Five Years Ago

Back in February 2007 Kendricke dropped by with the news that Sony Online Entertainment applied for a trademark for “EVERQUEST II RISE OF KUNARK,” thus confirming my guess that Kunark would be the EverQuest II expansion due near the end of 2007. A quick check of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office site shows nothing on my guess for this years expansion. (Return to the Planes of Power FTW!) The USPTO does show that SOE at one time had the trademark for, “EVERQUEST: THE DEMISE OF ARADUNE,” which is mildly ironic from a Vanguard point of view. I wonder what they had planned for that title? (Aradune = Brad McQuaid, for those not completely immersed in EQ history and lore.)

Of course, SOE also announced a price increase for Station Access shortly thereafter, always a buzz killer. This was immediately blamed on Vanguard and calls for the demise of Aradune were literal.  I’m sure glad SOE got over this trend of disappointing their fans!

I also started off in the Lord of the Rings Online open beta which eventually lead to the instance group spending the spring and summer in Middle-earth before returning to Azeroth.

And speaking of Azeroth, a year ago we were just starting to get into the fun that is Uldaman. And somewhere along the line I swapped out my rogue Blintz for my paladin Vikund, who has remained with the instance group ever since.

And finally, my wife got me a Wii for Valentine’s day that I couldn’t use until Easter!

New Linking Sites

I would like to thank the following sites for linking here in their blogrolls.

Please take a moment to visit them in return.

Most Viewed Posts in February

EVE Online related posts lead the pack… and people still want to know when Hulkageddon V is coming.

  1. Hulkageddon V: Unholy Union – Coming Soon
  2. How to Catch Zorua and Zoroark
  3. Running Civilization II on Windows 7 64-bit
  4. The Defense of 92D-OI
  5. The Drake Fleet goes to EWN-2U
  6. Play On: Guild Name Generator
  7. Standardized Souls for the Aspiring Ascended
  8. Prediction: Rift Will Go Free-to-Play When WoW Goes Free-to-Play
  9. All The Pretty Ships in New Eden – What Should I Fly Next?
  10. Mewtwo Available for Download from Nintendo
  11. VFK Homeland Defense Bags a Carrier
  12. Considering Star Wars Galaxies Emulation? Better Grab a Disk!

Spam Comments

Yes and not only that but palaeontologists would construct an evolutionary tree around them and call this “proof” of evolution
[Since this was on a Pokemon post, I am not sure what to think.]

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[Lot of this lately… no idea why]

лего – маленькая кровать
[The first time I have had to consider how “LEGO” looks in Russian.]

nick roth worse noob ever
[I have to start hanging out with Nick. And shouldn’t it be “worst” noob ever?]

EVE Online

Clearly EVE is still a going concern for me.  I have managed to onto the kill board for the corp/alliance each of my three months in null sec so far, which at least proves to them I’ve done something, since I tend to be on long after corp/alliance ops end. (The last one was scheduled when I would likely be eating lunch at the office.)

As such, I seem to fly pretty exclusively in Goon, or at least wider CFC, run ops.  Which is great.  I have a lot of fun in them.  And there are lots of other alliances represented in such ops, so it isn’t like I am the outsider.  It just feels a bit odd that I do not really play that much with the corp/alliance with which I am associated, and I wonder if that will come back to haunt me at some point.  The perils of the 24 hour clock I suppose.


Rift continues to be the home of the instance group.  It serves in filling the WoW-like niche for small group content.  The addition of some pre-defined roles for the four classes actually helped us out quite a bit, which points to another issue.

As a group we do not play the game very much outside of our weekly group.  Back when we were playing WoW as our main game, I often saw other members of the group on during off-hours.  I play alts a couple of times a week and I see Potshot on… and Earl was playing an alt for a bit until he bought SWTOR.

And so we are not as invested in the game and not as knowledgeable about the game.  Anything we don’t pick up in those three hours on Saturday night is likely a mystery to us.  I don’t know that this is really a bad thing.  Our characters tend to be poor, wear equipment that are drops, and vendor any excess as opposed to trying to work the auction house.  But we still have fun and I can see that continuing for the next few months, Rift being good at what it does, which is being a WoW surrogate.

What happens when we hit level cap though?  I am not so sure we re-roll as guardians or do expert dungeons or any of the other things we did in WoW.  We’re just not that attached to the game.  Barring an expansion with a rise in the level cap, we might be looking for Guild Wars 2, Torchlight 2, or some other game.

World of Warcraft

Or we might go back to Azeroth.

We are in a funny spot now, nostalgia-wise, with WoW being about the same age as EverQuest was when I started writing this blog.  Old enough, and changed enough, for there to be “good old days” to remember fondly.  And this came out with my first instance group video.  There was some very clear, “let’s go play WoW!” reaction to it in the group.  As a group we have more invested in WoW, in hours played, in memories, in emotion, and in character growth and development, than in any other game.

It would be just a question of how to approach the whole thing.  As much as I like the Dungeon Finder when looking to PUG, I think we might have to throw it out for any future group.  Overland travel and seeing the world is too much a part of what has built memories for us.  And while the 1-60 dungeons have all be toned down to easy mode, there are still dungeons in Burning Crusade we haven’t done, and three more instances in Lich King that got added after we were “finished” that we have never faced.  And who knows what pandas will bring.

Thoughts for the future.

Coming Up

GDC is coming up next week in San Francisco and I am not going.  I have actually gotten about a dozen email messages asking if I want to interview various companies that will be at the show… though at least half of those messages were part of the press drive to bring attention to the Swedish Gaming Exhibit in the Nordic Pavilion at the show. (Those terms are direct quotes.)  Unfortunately, I couldn’t score a free expo pass this year, and to purchase one runs you $250.  At that price point I start thinking about all the other things I could do with $250.  Ah well, it will probably be rainy up in SF next week in any case.

There is a distinct threat of a return to Middle-earth, with Gaff having finished up with Skyrim and SWTOR and looking for something with less time commitment than EVE on weeknights.  This might also impact my EVE Online time as well, as Gaff is the one person I actually really know in the corp/alliance.

I have previously threatened to write about iPad apps and games, and I renew this threat.  We’ll see if it actually happens.  I also threatened to do more than just patch Star Trek Online last month… and that was all I did.  It sure is patched.  I just have no desire to play.

Otherwise, you should pretty much expect the usual stuff.  Instance group.  EVE Online.  The timeline of the Fippy Darkpaw EverQuest progression server.  Maybe another video.  The last one got almost no reaction, so I might have spent all my video making talent on the one instance group nostalgia video.  Or maybe people just don’t care about Sunken Temple.  Always a possibility.

8 thoughts on “February in Review

  1. Darraxus

    If you do decide to go back and play some WoW, I would be willing to RealID friend you so that you could fill out a group to see Heroics with no stress. My wife plays as well if you needed another.

    I dont do a ton of instances at the moment, but that is because

    a) I dont really need a lot out of them (at least on my main)
    b) I am just sick of LFD

    I helped my wife get here Pug pet over a few days and it really turned my off to pure pugs.


  2. Wilhelm Arcturus Post author

    @SynCaine – The funny thing is, I barely posted at all about Rift in March 2011. The instance group was still in WoW, Pokemon Black and White came out, and I was mostly posting about our adventures on the Fippy Darkpaw EverQuest server. I think it was a nostalgia thing.


  3. saucelah

    I find your numbers impressive enough, possibly, as a relatively new blogger, slightly discouraging. In the beginning, where I was more interested, your average per day steadily climbs and at the five month point it is larger than my current hits-in-a-day record.

    But I’ll just keep telling myself that I’m doing okay for starting with an audience of zero and not being part of any game community at that time. :-D


  4. Wilhelm Arcturus Post author

    @Saucelah – In a way, I know what you mean. I got very lucky early on and was linked up on VirginWorlds. I have also been on the “Freshly Pressed” page for WordPress.com four times. (Clearly a sign that we are in some sort of Bizzaro World.) And Google has been very, very good to me, something I ascribe in part to setting up an RSS feed through their FeedBurner service, which seems to give one the fast ride to Google results.

    But I also have another blog. Actually I have had a few, but there is that other one that I have kept going for nearly four years. It gets roughly 3% of the traffic this blog does, despite my having done many of the same things. Granted, it is a picture only blog, but I thought, setting out, that just pictures might make it more popular.

    So after four years and much cross linking to it from here, a day when I break 100 views is a big deal and its busiest day ever is likewise eclipsed by the average views per day of this site on month five.

    And there is frustration on this site as well. I will write something I really like, something that makes a point or retells an old memory very well, and it won’t get a comment. But I post a YouTube video of cats playing patty cake on a lark, and THAT makes it to Freshly Pressed and becomes the my big post of the year! Hah!

    In the end, I remind myself that I write this for me and believe that I would continue to do so even if my traffic was less than it currently stands. Heck, I would trade half my traffic or more for a few more quality comments on posts where I am trying to invite discussion.

    Life in the blogging lane.


  5. saucelah

    I can relate to just about everything you wrote, especially the part about doing it for me. I originally started up just to force myself to play some of the f2p games I tended to frown upon, and because I’m a writer by trade and I wasn’t doing much writing that wasn’t for pay.

    Marketing writing rarely triggers that job well done feeling.

    I suppose I also write for a few friends now, as there’s been a few occasions with Glitch stuff when someone specifically asked me to write about something because they wanted to hear my take or my snark or whatnot.

    I’d probably also get more hits if I was posting more often, but I’ve been in a lull and not really interested in general topics. But hey, that’s changing today. Glitch made me happy, heh


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