Gwent Popularity

You ever wonder how many other people are playing Gwent? If this number is increasing or if the player base is shrinking and the game we all love isn’t in a good spot anymore? While CDPR is usually quite forthcoming with information, they don’t seem to release these numbers. Consequently, wild theories float around about the state of the game. Here we’ll have a look at the numbers we can get and check if Gwent is still going strong or if it is essentially on life support as some proclaim.

How many players are in Pro Rank?

While it is essentially impossible to get a view of what is happening on Ranked (but before Pro Rank), Seasonal and Draft, it is possible to get the total number of Pro Players each season from Play Gwent. Technical details can be found here. As you can see in the graph below, since the beginning of Masters 2 the number of players has increased considerably. A little over a year ago there were fewer than 3000 players dwelling in Pro Rank while a few months ago during the season of the Wild Hunt it peaked with almost 22 500 Pro players. Then it fell back to below 15k. While this might look like a sharp drop in popularity, we must consider the length of each season! 

Fewer players in Pro Rank =/= fewer active players!

During long seasons more players can get into Pro Rank. Lerio2 recently wrote an article on how Pro Rank expands during the season and could show that apart from the first few days this increase is fairly linear (make sure to check out Lerio2’s article here).  So, we can get a reasonable estimate how many players reach Pro Rank per day simply by dividing the total number of players (minus the top 500 players that stay in Pro Rank) by the number of days in the season, which in turn is a proxy for the number of active players or popularity.

When taking the length of each season into account it paints a different picture. While the game has seen a very respectable growth, going from 100 players making Pro Rank per day to over 500, during the Season of Mahakam there was a sharp drop. Season of Mahakam was a non-competitive season, where reaching the top ranks doesn’t qualify you for official tournaments anymore, so that could be a cause for this drop. There were no major changes, so the meta got a bit stale for some and there are a couple holidays (fall break and thanksgiving) where players might choose to spend their time otherwise. But it is anyone’s guess, feel free to share other points of views in the comments!

Though it is surprising that despite a fresh set being released (Way of the Witcher) during the Season of the Wild Hunt, the player activity didn’t surpass the Season of the Cat … could Christmas and New Year be the culprit here? The most recent two seasons were short, 22 and 28 days respectively, so while fewer players made it to Pro Rank overall, the players entering pro rank is comparable to the Season of the Cat 2020. While this shows there hasn’t been a huge decline in the number of players, it does highlight that active players have plateaued, at least for the last few months. 

Is Gwent dead?

No! Stop listening to Reddit! There were a few issues going into 2021 with Gwent, and a recent cyberattack on CDPR didn’t make the developer’s lives easier. While that might have slowed the growth, Gwent still has more active players than ever.  With twelve new cards of iconic characters, powerful enough to shake up the meta my prediction is that the number of players will start to tick up soon… and once the Season of the Bear 2021 is over, I’ll rerun my scripts to check! Stay tuned.

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