I do find it somewhat ironic that the two Sansar users who have posted user concurrency statistics for the platform in the past—Galen and Gindipple—have both largely moved on from Sansar to other projects.
However, I did receive a recent statistics chart generated by Gindipple, courtesy of Medhue (thanks!), which I wanted to share with you:
Gindipple’s stats show slow but steady growth in the number of concurrent users on Sansar. The monthly average concurrent Sansarians figure (bottom chart) has roughly doubled between March 2018 and October 2019.
Galen’s statistics page shows a similar growth in users, including peaks of up to 150 concurrent users at one time:
Even Wagner James Au, of the long-running blog New World Notes, who has often criticized Sansar for its low user concurrency figures in the past, posted the following “infographic” based on Steam usage figures (drawn by the talented artist Danielle Feigenbaum, creator of the regular feature Nylon Pinkney is Online comic on his blog):
Now, I do have a couple of criticisms of this image.
First, it is not an infographic; it is a cartoon. The zig-zag graph in the background is purely decorative, not informative.
Second, the small print along the bottom is almost impossible to read. It says:
Total concurrent users across all platforms potentially 2-3 times larger than Steam CCUs (concurrent users). Numbers based on Steam stats in September 2019 – Source: Steam Database Info
Even Wagner cannot deny that Sansar has had a recent jump in usage:
As of last month, in terms of peak concurrent users, VRChat remains the 800 pound Knuckle [a reference to the Ugandan Knuckles meme], with Rec Room maintaining its distant second place. There was also a small surprise bump for Linden Lab’s Sansar… After concurrency rates that averaged in the mid two figures (yes, that low) for most of the year, Sansar peak concurrency for September jumped to 220 last Friday. Thanks, at least in part, to a VR dating show hosted by online celebrity Jesse Cox and probably more key, the launch of an official Hello Kitty experience…
The problem with relying solely on Steam statistics in the case of Sansar is that there are two different ways that people can download the Sansar client software:
- Via Steam (which does publish public statistics on usage);
- Via the Sansar website (Linden Lab does not publish user stats).
We have no way of knowing what percentage of Sansar users downloaded their client software via Steam. Therefore, we still have to guess at the total overall level of usage of Sansar, using imperfect tools such as Steam stats and Galen’s and Gindipple’s statistics.
However, all three sources do show a slow but steady increase in the number of concurrent users in Sansar, which I’m sure Linden Lab is pleased to see. Of course, they also have their own internal statistics, which they do not release to the public, which I am sure confirm this trend.
Gindipple also released a pie chart showing the most popular Sansar worlds. Unsurprisingly (since all incoming users spawn there by default now), the Nexus is the most visited world, with 70% of the total number of recent visitors (I believe that these stats cover the past seven days):
Following the Nexus, the most popular Sansar worlds (formerly called experiences) are:
- Skyway Avenue (3.69% of total recent visitors)
- The Point of No Return – Chapter I (2.65%)
- Susan’s Diary (2.39%)
- Orphanage of Angels (2.35%)
- Fire Goat’s Free Avatar Store (1.96%)
- Ultimate Disc (1.93%)
- The Slewhouse (1.85%)
- Once Upon a Midnight Dream (1.77%)
- Scurry Waters (1.57%)
- Monstercat Call of the Wild (1.52%)
- Sanrio World (1.44%)
- Camp Goonies (1.24%)
- 114 Harvest (1.07%)
I do have rather mixed feelings about Linden Lab’s recent design decision to have users automatically spawn in the Nexus when they log into Sansar. On one hand, it does make it much easier for avatars to encounter other avatars in-world, and I often see groups of people gathered having conversations with each other, which is good.
But on the other hand, it is an absolute pain in the ass to have to keep going back to the Nexus when you simply want to explore the various Sansar worlds. If you are in desktop mode, you can still use the Atlas on the Sansar website, but if you are in VR mode, you pretty much have to keep cycling through the Nexus to find and select new experiences to visit, which quickly gets tiring.