One of the things I keep on seeing when various commenters write about Eve is the statement, sometime implied often stated, that Eve is not a mainstream MMORPG.
Actually it is.
Think about it for just a minute. Eve has 400,000 subscribers, more or less. There are not many games that can boast that. Sure World of Warcraft has in the high millions (not sure if it’s under 10 million yet) and The Old Republic has around 1.7 million. But what other games exceed 1×106 subscribers?
Warhammer briefly hit the million-ish mark, but is now down to one server (or is soon to be.) And back in the day, Everquest kept around 400K players happily entertained.
Of course there are the non-Western MMORPGs that have subscribers in the millions. And we shouldn’t forget the free to play games that have very large numbers too, but it’s harder to tell how these games are really doing in the popularity stakes. Subscriptions MMOs have that as an advantage. It’s easier to make an assessment of how many people are playing. As for the non-Western games, this is more about mainstream in the West, and I’m not sure exactly how popular the big Asian games are in the West anyway.
So why do we think that Eve isn’t a mainstream game when it has a subscriber base only really eclipsed by two other games?