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Bans - RedGuides should buy the Everquest franchise

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#1
With the second month of serious patching and login failures I suspect the people here are a lot more competent than the DBG crew.
 
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#2
It's pretty disheartening to have the same issues occur with every single patch...I wish it was a possibility lol
 

Ladon

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#4
Yeah, I was about to say that we should all put in for a lotto ticket pool.
 

Redbot

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#5
The devs probably want to make something incredible, but all of their time and energy goes into an xpac they need to rush out with a smaller and smaller team each year. Everyone knows this game has the possibility to grow if it weren't bled for the sake of other projects.
 
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#6
I logged into each server ( prior to patch at 8pm) and found an average of 170 players on every server some more some less...a lot less. At 15.00 per account that is 2550 per server x 12 servers = 30,600 a month. That is not a healthy budget to pay for bandwidth datacenter/cloud etc. Sounds like a lot but when your talking about developers that can rack up quickly and it is helping to advance other games etc. It is an old game with a smaller and smaller operational budget. I get it, if I had to guess the whole thing has 12 to 16 months left of viability but I hope I am wrong.
 
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Redbot

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#7
Those #'s are when MQ2 was down, not fair ;)

We're going to help resurrect this game over the next year.
 
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#8
I logged into each server ( prior to patch at 8pm) and found an average of 170 players on every server some more some less...a lot less. At 15.00 per account that is 2550 per server x 12 servers = 30,600 a month. That is not a healthy budget to pay for bandwidth datacenter/cloud etc. Sounds like a lot but when your talking about developers that can rack up quickly and it is helping to advance other games etc. It is an old game with a smaller and smaller operational budget. I get it, if I had to guess the whole thing has 12 to 16 months left of viability but I hope I am wrong.
The other day I noticed my server had over 370 in general chat alone ... so something is up with your numbers.
 
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#10
I logged into each server ( prior to patch at 8pm) and found an average of 170 players on every server some more some less...a lot less. At 15.00 per account that is 2550 per server x 12 servers = 30,600 a month. That is not a healthy budget to pay for bandwidth datacenter/cloud etc. Sounds like a lot but when your talking about developers that can rack up quickly and it is helping to advance other games etc. It is an old game with a smaller and smaller operational budget. I get it, if I had to guess the whole thing has 12 to 16 months left of viability but I hope I am wrong.
Eq makes about 40mil/year. I am getting my info from a former dev that used to work there: https://www.firesofheaven.org/threa...ak-russian-shutdown.989/page-142#post-2431789
 

Maskoi

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#11
That is total BS. There is no way in hell EQ is making 40 million a year as of 2015. That's impossible. That guy is a fucking idiot or a total liar.
That is like people subbing 200,000 accounts a year for the full year and buying stuff constantly in the store.
Those are EQ numbers more like for 2004 not 2015.
 
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#12
That is total BS. There is no way in hell EQ is making 40 million a year as of 2015. That's impossible. That guy is a fucking idiot or a total liar.
That is like people subbing 200,000 accounts a year for the full year and buying stuff constantly in the store.
Those are EQ numbers more like for 2004 not 2015.
Agree with the lizard. I think about 10k active subs seems more in-line with reality.
10k x $15 = $150,000 per month x 12 = 1,800,000 revenue not including store purchases or expansions
Overhead is probably around 1 mil to keep the lights on in a skeleton crew. EQ is probably profitable, but the numbers are pretty insignificant. No money too much of anything in the software world. :(
 
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#13
I don't know... checked online for Daybreak Games financials and on this site it shows an estimated revenue or $95 million more or less. Maybe there's a lot more to EQ than we think that we know :p
 

Ladon

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#16
Hoovers is inconsistent with private companies because it's just an estimate and they don't have direct access to the financials. Other sites like that give numbers ranging from 10-40. I was trying to take a deep dive to look for non-consolidated financial statements from Sony to see if we could get data from their fiscal year that ended March 31, 2015 (right prior to the sale) but no dice.
 
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#18
That is total BS. There is no way in hell EQ is making 40 million a year as of 2015. That's impossible. That guy is a fucking idiot or a total liar.
That is like people subbing 200,000 accounts a year for the full year and buying stuff constantly in the store.
Those are EQ numbers more like for 2004 not 2015.
Well considering Elidroth used to work there and was respected most of his tenure I have trouble finding a reason to distrust him. Whenever I accuse/think someones lying I try to think of a motive good enough to warrant the lie. If I can't think of a motive or reason good enough to warrant the lie I assume it's more likely to be true than false. In this situation I can't think of a good reason Elidroth would lie; he has more to lose than gain by talking about this sort of stuff. I doubt many future employers would want him talking about their financials on some message boards.. as an example. Also, an observation since I have shared Elidroth's post with at least a dozen other people; every-single-one of them disbelieved it =P .. they always gave emotional reasons or they did math and only calculated subscribtion numbers and expansion sales and ignored the mountain of evidence that is the profitability of True Box/TLP servers.

40mil isn't that hard for me to imagine though, I have met guilds full of people on the True Box servers who dump 500$ on epics each time Kunark rolls around. Any time unique new items are added into the game on each of the progression servers, again, people dumping hundreds of hundreds of dollars over them. This doesn't include expansion sales, store sales etc etc. I've met at least 3 dozen people that play EQ as a full time job on True Box too, one of them was the leader/raid leader of each Twisted Legion reincarnation on Phinigel, Quarm and Ragefire. I met many of his customers who spent thousands upon thousands of dollars each year into the game and the person I speak of claimed 50 - 75k/yr average wages. He worked at least 18hr days though - so honestly not that impressive.

I think the more likely explanation is we all greatly overestimate how much revenue MQ2 brings Daybreak. Every piece of evidence I have seen from True Box servers leads me to believe the amount of money they make from those servers far exceeds any amount of money we put into the game by subbing multiple accounts. I just dumped 750$ on expansions the last two weeks and that's just a drop in the bucket on True Box servers, I have seen people spend that much money on an epic weapon. Shit, I've seen them spend it on a dragon scale; just a part of one epic. Sometimes they buy it outright with RMT and sometimes they buy Kronos and trade them for the item.

This is of course my own personal anecdotal experience but all the empirical experience seems to back it up too. Daybreaks been focusing almost all their efforts these past few years on True Box, they keep releasing new server after new server before any even make it past PoP... Why? Because they experimented and have proven that it's working/successful. Lockjaw/Ragefire was a test, Phinigel was a confirmation of that test and Quarm likely was another experiment to see if it would be worth it to do this in later eras. Thanks to their few experiments they have an empirical proven formula on how to make money and we've seen it working with Coirnav and Agnarr.


I believe if you could find old financial records of Daybreak prior to 2015 and post 2015 (or whatever year Ragefire/Lockjaw launched) the evidence would also back up what I am theorizing, that the TLPs are currently making the large majority of the money for Daybreak. We're probably 1/100th of what they make in total.
 
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#19
Agree with the lizard. I think about 10k active subs seems more in-line with reality.
10k x $15 = $150,000 per month x 12 = 1,800,000 revenue not including store purchases or expansions
Overhead is probably around 1 mil to keep the lights on in a skeleton crew. EQ is probably profitable, but the numbers are pretty insignificant. No money too much of anything in the software world. :(
Yeah I've done this equation a few times and it usually ends up around 2-2.5MM a year (including xpacs). They might be pushing 3 on a good year.
 
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#20
It's possible for someone to be wrong without lying. The amount of RMT probably has some correlation to the amount of money spent in the store, but I don't suspect it is a lot. Unless you are suggesting that DBG gets a cut of RMT, that argument is pretty flat since the items that are sold via RMT do not have a DBG revenue analog.

Still, since this thread is about RG buying EQ. Even if you went with a low number for EBITDA, I don't think RG has that much.
 

Ladon

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#21
Lurk, I think he's full of shit because of the ramifications for accountants in releasing confidential company information like that. He's either full of shit or a god damned idiot that doesn't understand why that information is held close to the chest by Finance departments. If they wanted us to know they'd go public and be subject to filings. I saw a tech support employee at my company get fired for mentioning information from our quarterly All Hands meetings at an industry event.
 
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#22
The devs probably want to make something incredible, but all of their time and energy goes into an xpac they need to rush out with a smaller and smaller team each year. Everyone knows this game has the possibility to grow if it weren't bled for the sake of other projects.

Why I try to support this game very little as possible, they've squandered $200+ million on other projects, and yet haven't changed their trajectory from that path. Outside of buying expansions, I try to support this game little as possible nowadays.

I think the number that guy stating $40 million seems "more" accurate, than what people are proposing at 2.5-3 million a year in this thread, or EQ would have been scrapped long ago. If they were making only lets say $5 mill, (2x what you guys are projecting), this project would be scrapped. The operating margin would be way to low to continue funding EQ each year.

I think they've found that using TLP servers and putting 1 out every year seems to generate that boost in revenue for them, since this is a gold server, you have to sub to play.

Along with the higher price goods in Marketplace (Kronos, Big Bags, TLP Bags, all those familiars and nimbus and mounts, junk that people always seem to buy). Also don't forget they bumped up the price on Draught of the Craftsman before RoS launch by 2.5x the value it was selling previously (btw I exploited the hell out of this without buying a single Craftsman potion due to their price increase) I would guess their at about $25-30 million in revenue each year.

If they stop putting out TLP or other ruleset servers, that require you to sub, probably see a sharp decline in revenue. The problem with these type of servers though is they aren't even thinking about a 5 year or 10 year plan strategy, its short term revenue, which shows a boost in revenue for 1-2 years, and then the TLP server folks flake out of playing for good or return back to live servers.
 
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#24
I think MQ2 players see a certain min/max'd side of things where we're trying to run 6-50 toons for the best budget & "return." We certainly contribute to the bottom line, more than an average single toon player, but I'd bet we're not the largest part of EQ's revenue.

Daybreak has 200-300 employees? Linkedin said roughly 300. Let's go low and say $40K/yr avg salary for 200 workers.
  • $8M minimum in annual salary expenses alone. ($40,000 X 200) And that's just writing paychecks not the employer taxes, insurance and any benefits. The employee total cost is probably closer to $20-40M/year.
Then you're paying hardware costs/maint/power for the servers plus the regular business stuff like building rent + utils, marketing, legal..

$40M might be the whole company, but it sounds about right if $40M was just EQ1 or maybe EQ1/2 only. $90M annual gross for the whole company doesn't seem crazy.

TLP: Big money maker as discussed above.

Whales: I don't recall the exact numbers, but in FTP/in-game-store type games, it turns out roughly 70% of the revenue comes from 10% of the players that buy tons of extras from the in-game store. Beyond subs and x-pacs, I know quite a lot of people that buy heroics, transfer tokens, xp potions, TS potions or in-store bag/packs. I've also seen players go crazy on decorating their home/guild hall with store bought stuff.

For fun assuming you wanted to buy it, let's say EQ1 makes a net profit of $10M per year. Investors would want at least 10% return from a business purchase, so that places EQ1's market value at $80M-$100M. Maybe a small extra premium for the intellectual property rights (say $1-5M), though I don't see a huge market for their use beyond the game or a similar replacement.
 
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#25
No way in hell those guys are being paid 40K or even 60K per year as a developer/coder though. Probably more close to 90-120k salary, with the community manager role etc type jobs probably around 40k and customer service jobs in full time position around 30kish. Have to remember these guys live in California so multiply w/e you think their salary is by 2x.
 
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#26
I have zero insider knowledge of the financial situation with the Everquest portion of DBG. However the vibe they emit is strong that they're just barely keeping afloat. When the bean counters assess the valuation of a business the net profit margin is one of the largest indicators. If the net isn't there then the business is worth the depreciated capital investment and accumulated goodwill. And those both seem to be in serious decline. In other words the valuation of the EQ franchise could be much cheaper than anyone imagines.
 
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#29
Long ago there was a company that did powerleveling, toon sales etc... They bragged about making millions per year.
 
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#30
Well considering they have around 5-7 active titles, it's possible they do have a total revenue stream of around 20-25 mil. I'm sure they raise rounds of funding for new projects which might be included in this "40 mil" number.

I would be shocked if EQ is pulling in more than 5MM in gross rev... the traffic/conversion rates/AUR just don't add up to more than that. "Whales" aren't spending 100k+ a year on this game. I don't know their other titles well enough to even guess at their revenue, I also don't think EQ is their most profitable title. You don't scrap an easy money game like EQ, these equations above are assuming all costs are going into just 1 game and we know that's not the case.

Since it is private... we literally have no insight into what else they are invested in as well. So EQ and all their titles could be completely worthless and Epstein is just some freak EQ addict like us and wants to spend his 100MM crypto fortune on keeping it under his control! (all of that is made up). Just saying there are a ton of different ways private companies pull in revenue, it's not always the conventional way. Epstein could be great at raising funding (case in point this new venture with nant or whatever the company is) and horrible at actually turning a profit.

40 mil from EQ is just not feasible.
 
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#32
Um, according to the bottom of the home page there are over 20,000 members on this forum. If all of them have just one subbed account that’s 320,000 ish per month,3,840,000 a year.
And that’s just redguides members, and most of us have 3 accounts or more. I have 15 subbed accounts + the money for heroics and expacs for the 20 other silver accounts.
 
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#33
Plus there are 7.6 billion people in the world.
If only 0.00001 % of the population plays EQ that’s still 70,000 people roughly.
 

Maskoi

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#34
lol those are all the members we have had since we started in 2004.
 
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