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Friday, September 29, 2023

Blizzard’s Diablo 4 stats suggest barely anyone is trying PvP

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Back in March, not long after Diablo 4 concluded its second beta weekend, Blizzard put out a set of stats revealing that players had collectively spent about 7000 real-life years in the game over its six days of accessibility. Well, turns out those were rookie numbers, because the latest stats say we’ve now all cumulatively spent over 30,000 years—or 276 million hours—in Sanctuary since the game’s early access period began on June 1.

For reference, 30,000 years ago was the late Stone Age, when Diablo 1 was still in a pre-development phase and uttering the words ‘Halsey and Suga from BTS have collabed on a Lilith-themed music video‘ would have got you clubbed to death by a less genteel forebear of Ötzi the Iceman. Going the other way—30,000 years into our future—of course puts us in the time of the Horus Heresy and the start of the downfall of the Imperium of Man.

It’s too much time, in short, and it’s not the only eye-popping number Blizzard is boasting about. In their 276 million hours in the game, players have slaughtered 276 billion monsters and died a mere 317 million times (5.8 million of which were served by The Butcher). That is, I believe, an overall KDR of about 871. Well done all, in the unending war of player versus environment, the environment is getting absolutely stomped.

PvP is a much more modest story, though. Only 430,000 players have died so far in PvP battles, and I have to imagine it’s because most players are avoiding it. I certainly am; Diablo is about turning hordes of mobs into thin paste, not about combat with people who can meaningfully fight back. That’s just rude.

Finally, the least surprising stat of all is just how much cash the game is printing, although props to Activision Blizzard for zeroing in on such a thematically appropriate milestone. Since its full launch on June 6, the game has generated over $666 million in sales, although Blizzard still won’t tell us how many copies sold that actually translates to. A lot? Probably a lot.

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