So, the population


Yep, you guessed it. The population is dropping fast as predicted.
Stats as of today (steam ppl):
30-Day Avg. : 287.3
30-Day Gain : -55.6
30-Day % Gain : -16.21%
You may say its unrelated, but it started dropping about after small-set nerfs, while was ~450 avg before. You can see a huge instant drop after nerf-patch landed (-21.50% for precision).
I personally froze playing the game for now, to see what’s next; but if population keeps dropping like that there won’t be much choice left anyway.
My thoughts is something is wrong with economics. Most likely immense rarity density per set turns off F2P players.
What reasons do you think?

Hey, here to sugest

The Steam stats provide only a partial point of view, because there are plenty of people playing the game using the native client for performance reasons, or just because they are used to it. I know that people have been talking about “the game dying” since forever, but the game still seems to be in a relatively good shape.

However, I think there have been a number of weird choices by CPG which lead to players leaving the game or being less enthusiastic about it. A few examples:

  1. Obviously broken cards which were ultimately nerfed to the ground
  2. More cards with RNG and less emphasis on positioning
  3. Reduced faction identity over the last sets
  4. Rift mode released in a poor shape while removing Gauntlet
  5. Delay on the release of the announced mobile version
    and possibly more.

I don’t have numbers, but I hope CPG will realize that something has not been right with their game lately. I hope they will ensure the higher quality standards we were used to have.


one reason why people might drop from steam, is a problem i had while trying to purchase packs with the steam wallet in windows 7(you just can’t buy anything), i don’t know if any other OS has the same issue, but i think is a big enough reason to now play the game on steam.


Honestly, I think a lot of people get free games on steam to test (have you seen how many people are in bronze and silver compared to everything else?) and then stop playing. It could also be people switching to the client (as I did) in order to play on smurfs or for some other reason.


I myself can admit that the last exp. and the nerf to inner focus alongside the vanar meltdown, magmar meta drove me away from the game.
Now instead of running a series ladder I’m chilling in low until the new exp. hits


287.3 active users per day? Please expound a bit on what these numbers actually mean.


I can’t tell if Steam numbers mean anything or not.
If I see the wait time while matchmaking process then I’m absolutely relaxed. It takes 10 to 30 seconds which is healthy from my point of view.

I disagree with two of your implications:

  1. The nerfs of the last patch were necessary and in no way annoyingly. The game didn’t suffer from it but benefits. There are just more cards that have to follow - so I see the nerfs as a first step. In no way I think it’s valid to correlate the patch with ingame “population” - especially when not knowing the numbers of players.
  2. S-Rank viable decks can be built from 2,000 Mana upwards. Most of them being under 5,000 Mana atm. How can you tell this is wrong? (As I started in the Beta times 10,000 weren’t that unusual.)

Personally I think it’s absolutely legit that F2P players want to have the chance to play the “full” game. I think this is necessary for the health of the game. But I also think they have to accept that there is a downside in doing that. It’s having to grind for gold in a more enthusiastic manner then people who pay money.
I’m missing this state of mind from F2P players sometimes.

While Duelyst isn’t that generous as it was (roundabout) a year ago anymore - it’s still the most generous CCG out there. (If I interpret the things I read about this subject correctly since I can’t evaluate it by myself.)


the avg number of players per day…


This shouldn’t be taken out of context and often is. These numbers represent the average number of players on steam and are aggregated as such.

What you shouldn’t take away from these numbers are the amount of players as that is highly unrepresentative of the playerbase at large. Do however be concerned by the consistent player decline, both on steam and on the subreddit as this likely translates to a struggle to retain players across the board.


In fact, i used to play on steam but now i play on navigator cause lulz (welp and because at college i haven’t acces to steam too).

Not pretty sure about dat % of active users per day. I mean, finding match its pretty fast, so it should be more than 300 persons playing this atm.


Are these players just logging in for the daily reward, does that count? Do we know the numbers over a few months? Do we know how many people have the game installed via Steam? Is this decline due to a lack of entrants? Or are there plenty of new entrants? Who is leaving? People trying the game out and discovering it’s not for them, or rather people who’ve been playing for a while but lose interest? Etc.

What can we glean from the Steam public data?


I play in native client since beta, never really bothered with steam. I guess there’s a lot of us that pass under the steams stats radar.

Mobile release would probably bring many new players, though some ui tweaks would be neccessary for it to be playable.


I’m one of the players who has dropped off recently. I can’t pin down a specific reason, but my gut feeling is that when I first started playing the game just had this fresh, challenging feeling. Really like Chess meets Hearthstone. It felt like every turn was really meaningful, and you had so many different choices.

As I got better, those choices were reduced a lot, but there were still several interesting options each turn. But the latest expansions seem to have made positioning less important, and there is just a crazy amount of cheap removal.

I don’t know if I’m the target market, but I’d like the best player to win 80-90% of the time. Right now it doesn’t feel like that.

Rambling aside, I’m very curious to see where the game goes next expansion, as there’s been some really cool new cards, and I still think it’s a great game. Here’s hoping for 90% high level positional cards and nerfs to removal.


This conversation point almost seems verbatim word for word from the pre steam days.

I’m not doomsaying the game, others simply have unrealistic views as to what Duelyst is and where it stands on the ccg market space.

The game is in a player retention hole and mobile is the last gasp effort to reverse that trend.

The argument (I prefer discussion but some will be stubborn) is more along the lines of this:

Steam numbers are down, systematically, month after month, subreddit numbers similarly have been dropping ever since and before Shimzar last year, duelyststats, the meta tracking service have a decline in users registering to their service, S rank, the supposed .03 percent (correct numbers if inaccurate) have less users in S these past months.

Yet despite all of this, we should believe that these statistics don’t reflect on the game as a whole but are rather contained events and do not represent the game at large.


is just that, they gather all the people that play the game every day for a month and divide it by 30, i guess. it would be more interesting if we had a media of hours per day.




@thematsjo Free the Proletariat!

In all seriousness though, every time anyone asks CPG about numbers in the game, Ryv has responded saying that they aren’t having major problems with player retention. The times to get into a game haven’t gone up any significant amount, so I’m inclined to believe them.

Remember the most outspoken crowd, are the ones displeased in how things are. There may be 10 new players perfectly happy with the game, for each one that we know actually leaves.


Again, users are unrealistic in their expectations.

Duelyst comes from a relatively (more like unknown) studio. It’s art direction, while retro (and retro is in vogue atm) is not appealing to the market at large.

They have less money than most of their competitors and despite being one of the first non HS ccg’s on the market to make a push for second place have been slow to release additional content and still have no clear deadline as to a mobile release while direct competitor’s such as Shadowverse prioritized mobile even before their steam release.

New kid on the block, Gwent IS well funded, comes with huge name recognition and extremely polished and drawing big names such as Mogwai and bigger names from HS such as Lifecoach as content creators.

By emulating popular elements from HS, Duelyst went for a short term gain at the expense of features which made it unique to the market, it’s board.

This in turn opened the door to project’s such as the up and coming Shardbound to be able to promote themselves as the future of tactical board based ccg’s, something Duelyst no longer will be able to hold on to. Not to mention the only competitive player to ever (as to my knowledge) receive a sponsorship in Duelyst, Nick, The Scientist has since moved on to Shardbound and the game can do little worse than to pick the minds of players such as him, solafid and a host of disillusioned ex Duelyst players.

Ultimately my opinion is that it’s extremely unlikely that Duelyst ever becomes “big” in the sense that it’s players might have wanted it to, but with proper balancing and a genuine push for new content I don’t see why it couldn’t at least be competitive and a niche gem in the market that would be a credit to CP when trying to attract funds for future ventures.


With all respect to anyone working in or for CPG, they’re never going to say their game is failing if they have any sense. It’d be the equivalent of a government saying the economy is in a slump and going to stay there: their goal is to stimulate investment to get out of the slump so they have to play a game of make-believe to convince others to take the risk and spend in an uncertain environment.

Saying Duelyst is dying woud only accelerate its decline because new players will be less likely to get involved with a game that’s likely to disappear and existing players become less likely to spend money on a game that might not be around much longer. Hence the company will always maintain the game is doing fine, no matter the situation. On that basis I wouldn’t advise looking to CPG specifically for an honest appraisal. Not due to any lack of personal ethics but rather to a financial need to keep themselves solvent.


Well playing the game via steam isn’t the only way to play the game. There are other ways such as playing the via client that can be downloaded from the Duelyst website and playing it in a browser. Personally, I tend to play via browser over the other two options, but its not reflected in the numbers given in the opening post since its only for steam.

Something that people should stop doing for certain is to say that the game is dying, because doing that helps no one (the game, the devs or the players) and only serves to create a self fulfilling prophecy. So should everyone do nothing? No, of course not. Players should encourage other potential players to try the game if they think they’ll like it. The Devs should find ways to make the game more visible to people. While the game is being improved upon.

But to touch onto why the population has dropped on steam, it could be for many reasons. Worlds championships are over so people could be going to other games until news about the next Worlds and qualifying for it comes out. They might only enjoy gauntlet and while its frozen out they moved on. Poor visibility of Duelyst on steam, it takes a lot of pages to go through before finding Duelyst in the popular free games section therefore making harder to attract new players. Could be people just waiting on the next expansion. Students taking on important exams during this time of the year. Plus other reasons.