Recently, High Fidelity hosted what was to be the first of three successive “avatar cosplay” themed events, called Multi-Con VR (here are some pictures taken at the event). The company decided to throw some serious cash around to entice people to enter the contest (US$16,000 in total prizes, plus US$300 paid out in High Fidelity Coin for every avatar entry accepted into the contest).
Well, it would appear that High Fidelity found the response to the first Multi-Con to be rather underwhelming, and has decided to cancel the next two events:
Thank you for a wonderful Multi-Con VR: Anime + Animation.
While this experience was groundbreaking and a success in many ways, we’re not seeing sufficient demand for events of this type. As such, we’ve decided to cancel upcoming Multi-Con VR dates.
Translation: We were expecting a big crowd, but we didn’t get one. One thing that I have noticed is that High Fidelity isn’t afraid to switch gears if something isn’t working. For example, they had originally planned six successive monthly stress tests, only to stop after the first three and switch to big monthly events instead (like last November’s FUTVRE LANDS Festival). That event proved to be a raging success, but I have noticed a definite drop-off in user interest and attendance at HiFi events since then (including Multi-Con VR). Obviously, the company has noticed this too, and has decided to try something else instead.
Some on social media have commented that High Fidelity was just throwing money at people to get them to use their platform:
They literally resort to bribing people to get them to log in these days. And even that isn’t working.
And while I am not so harsh as this particular commenter (who shall remain anonymous), I must confess that I myself am not a fan of big showy events, which at best give only temporary spikes in concurrent user figures. In the end it doesn’t come down to how many people you can pack onto a single domain for an event; it’s about how many people you get to stick around and keep coming back.
High Fidelity has decided that they weren’t getting the bang for the buck they were expecting, and they will invest their money elsewhere, perhaps coming up with new and different events in future.