Gamersgate Top 10 analysis

By Kieron Gillen on April 14th, 2008 at 8:10 pm.

Since we noticed it’s the only place selling Pathologic in Direct Download, I found myself browsing Gamersgates websites. And it’s got a last-week-sales Top 10 which is constantly updated. It made interesting reading – this is currently what the biggest games on the PC are…

If we did click through stuff we would probably have some money but we don't so we remain bitterly poor.

Suffice to say, it’s somewhat different from your common or garden retail chart.

The immediate action is to say “Well, clearly it doesn’t sell any mainstream titles”. But that’s not right, as a flick to their Action section will reveal (Each section has its own top 10). Even in the strategy section, it’s got recent hits like Soulstorm… and they’re being outsold through this particular portal by the most marginal selection of of PC games imaginable. God knows how many they’re actually selling, but it’s still a snapshot of a completely alien PC gaming world to how everyone normally considers it. What would it to be to live in a world where that chart was the mainstream charts? Millions of Hard Historical wargames, with the first-person-shooter devotees as peripheral as half the stuff Tim Stone loves now…

It makes you think how downloadable games enable niches.

And it also makes you think if RPS is able to make a game go top 10 by having a good old rant, we probably should find it easier to find advertis(Snip! That’s Enough Whining – Ed).

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35 Comments »

  1. Cyrenic says:

    Hopefully a decent portion of that income is going to the Pathologic developers, however many copies that actually represents.

  2. InVinoVeritas says:

    It’s so encouraging to see a top 10 list without COD 4, WoW, or The Sims:Expansion #3249 on the list! I for one, hopped on Gamersgate the second I finished reading your Pathologic articles (not the third part yet, can’t spoil it for myself!).

  3. Chris Evans says:

    Gamersgate is pretty good, just gotta refind my login details :D

    Shame my PC is on the way out otherwise would be snapping up games all over the place on there :D

  4. Chris R says:

    Wow, I haven’t heard of any of those other games on the chart (asides from Pathologic), that’s pretty neat. I wonder if it’ll go up to 1st place if enough people here d/l it…

  5. Theory says:

    …so why isn’t Pathologic on Steam? I’d have bought it years ago if it’d been there to remind me.

  6. Dracko says:

    Good to see Paradox Interactive going strong. Those guys really need more cred than they get.

  7. Janek says:

    Well. It’s not that surprising a list I guess – most of the “big name” games are probably available from a selection of other more high-profile DDL services, whereas Paradox’s stuff is pretty much only available online through GamersGate (I think).

    It’s sort of like Stardock’s Totalgaming.net being dominated by GalCiv/Sins. A bit.

  8. Chris Evans says:

    I think I am mad…I just bought Pathologic from GamersGate even after ordering a hard copy from amazon…. :|

    I’m a fool!

  9. InVinoVeritas says:

    @ Chris Evans: I can understand… I just ordered a copy of “I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream” on Amazon, but if I could find it DDL somewhere, I’d be VERY tempted to make the purchase… Delayed gratification is not my strong point.

  10. Lucky says:

    Exactly what Janek said. I doubt all that many people who aren’t Paradox fanboys have even heard about Gamersgate. Furthermore, three of the titles on that list are available ONLY from GamersGate.

    …though I suppose you could include Victoria as well, since it’s practically impossible to find.

  11. fluffy bunny says:

    Yeah, the only two non-Paradox-titles that I have seen selling really well at GamersGate are Puzzle Quest (which was GG-exclusive for a while) and Sword of the Stars (which AFAIK got released on GG before its North-American debut).

    But still, it is surprising to see just how successful Paradox are. You don’t hear much about them, but their stuff seems to be selling very well ATM.

    And btw, there’s a lot of really interesting games at GG. It’s well worth having a look through their catalogue if you’re the kind of PC-gamer who likes to try fun stuff that’s not very well known.

  12. Zeno, Internetographer says:

    Fie on Pathologic, it doesn’t work for me.

  13. Kieron Gillen says:

    The point’s as much the idea of “Specialist bookstores” as anything else.

    KG

  14. Nimic says:

    Paradox Interactive really deserve to sell well. Their games might not be exactly mainstream, but for people who appreciate those kinds of games (namely: me), they make the best. I’m a huge history buff, and all they do is history!

    Though I have to agree with what a few people have already mentioned. Gamersgate is interconnected pretty heavily with Paradox Interactive. Certain expansions to their games are GG-only, and I think it’s the only place where you can digitally buy Paradox-games.

    While I’m already ranting on about Paradox, I might add that their games are on the exclusive list of games I wouldn’t illegally download (Along with all Valve games, C&C, Crysis, etc).

  15. Jae Armstrong says:

    Not so much “interconnected pretty heavily” as owned outright by, iirc.

  16. Darren T says:

    Er… Acording to wikipedia, Paradox Interactive runs GamersGate…
    Possibly not the most impartial top 10 ever.

  17. Rob says:

    Darren T: It’s still a bit of a step to come right out and suggest there may be fraud, it could as easily be that people buy their games there in such quantity because Paradox own it and their games are therefore available there.

  18. Scott Jennings says:

    With the exception of Pathologic, all of the items on that top 10 list posted are either exclusive to Gamersgate (the EU3, Victoria and Crusader Kings expansions) or very, very hard to find outside of Gamersgate (Victoria itself, the Hearts of Iron 2 expansions). So, fans of Paradox grand strategy games (which are a comparatively small, but not completely inconsequential group) will drive those stats up far past the other 3rd party titles Gamersgate sells.

  19. Acosta says:

    I am going to miss boxes in the future (my only hope is seeing a model where the standard copy is a digital one while the LE is a physical copy of the game with nice extras, just like Stardock did Sins of a Solar Empire.

  20. Rorschach says:

    Actually 3rd party games do fine on GG. Sword of the Stars and the exp. pack Born of Blood (to name two) were in this top ten for many months after release.

  21. caesarbear says:

    When 9 out of the Top 10 are by Paradox, it’s actually rather unfortunate to find Pathologic ninth on that list. It means it’s not outselling esoteric Paradox game #4. If this is it’s only means of retail, unlike most of those Top 10 titles, that doesn’t bode very well for sales. Seeing it ranked on Steam, Stardock or Gametap, even if low, would probably be a better sign for the financials of the developers.

  22. malkav11 says:

    Consider that Pathologic has been out for years, got mixed to poor reviews (despite capturing certain people’s hearts) and was never released at all in North America. For it to be #9 on any chart is either very impressive or means GamersGate doesn’t do very large numbers of sales. (And it’s not the only means of retail for Pathologic – the game *was* out in stores in Europe, especially Russia, it’s just left ‘em again.)

  23. Caiman says:

    I agree with the specialist bookstore analogy. Considering that most of these games are impossible to get hold of at your usual bricks and mortar outlet (or last for a couple of weeks before vanishing forever) I’m pleased that online distribution is becoming a viable (and risk-free) way of getting the games that niche gamers crave.

  24. Noc says:

    Would it be possible to query Gamersgate, and find out if Pathologic’s position in the charts is due to an otherwise inexplicable purchasing blitz in the past week or so?

    Or if it’s been genuinely successful in Gamersgate’s corner of the niche market?

  25. fluffy bunny says:

    Noc: This is the chart for the last week. Obviously Pathologic is not in their overall top ten. :)

    Also, you can always view the latest ten games that’s been purchased at GamersGate, and yeah, Pathologic has been showing up a lot lately.

    (also, paying attention to the latest purchases, it’s obvious that GamersGate is selling a lot of games – and the fact that these are all niche market titles makes this even more impressive)

  26. Ginger Yellow says:

    EUIII is a lot of fun (think Mediaeval: Total War with more strategic depth and no tactical battles), but the lack of a goal structure put me off after a while. I had no real metric to judge how I was doing. It would probably benefit from something like Total War’s missions. Well worth a download, though, especially if you like open-ended strategy.

  27. groovychainsaw says:

    I’m going to say pathalogic got into the charts because i linked it during the pathologic review! I changed the charts! Wooo….
    Wonder what else i can influence in this way… /Evil laugh

  28. Kieron Gillen says:

    I did say it was the last week’s sales in the second line of the article, guys.

    KG

  29. Caiman says:

    We’re just here for the pretty pictures, Kieron.

  30. Noc says:

    Whoops. I read it as “Top sales as of last week.” I’m not sure why.

  31. terry says:

    I’m fairly surprised that Puzzle Quest is missing from this chart, the dominance of Paradox games aside.

  32. Lightbulb says:

    Ginger Yellow – EU2 has victory points. Did they take those out for EU3? Also you know how you doing via this simple flow chart:

    Am i dead? Yes = I have lost
    Am i dying? Yes = I am losing
    Am i not dying? Yes = I am doing well

    :)

    I love paradox games. I played quite alot of EU2 over the Easter holidays. Can’t wait to give EU:Rome a go, looks really fun and its set in one of my favourite historical periods. :)

    Should be soooooo much better than Rome Total War anyway…

  33. Nordstream says:

    -”EUIII is a lot of fun (think Mediaeval: Total War with more strategic depth and no tactical battles), but the lack of a goal structure put me off after a while. I had no real metric to judge how I was doing. It would probably benefit from something like Total War’s missions. Well worth a download, though, especially if you like open-ended strategy.”

    The second EU3 expansion, In Nomine due for release this spring/summer, will introduce (among other things, like rebels-with-a-cause) dynamic context-sensitive missions, somewhat analogous to the ones in EU1 (I don’t know how TW handles missions as I never spent much time in their horrible campaign mode).

    In Nomine “sneak-peak” archive:
    http://forum.paradoxplaza.com/forum/showthread.php?t=350491

    And if you have only played vanilla EU3, the Magna Mundi mod is a must-try:
    http://www.terranova.dk/viewforum.php?f=78
    (Magna Mundi for EU3, MM Gold for the NA expansion, and eventually, MM Platinum for In Nomine)

    Lightbulb: Yes, they took out the victory points in EU3. There’s a prestige scale ranging from -100 to +100 though, but you need to continuously “fight” to keep it high, since there’s a constant 5% decay/normalization towards 0.

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