ACC player counts in review: January 2022

It is now February. February 5th, to be precise. High time to post another player count in review. A bit later than normal, due to an unfortunate but brief spell of coronavirus on my part. Better late than never.

December showed a lot of promise for the future. Did January deliver on this promise? To be brief: yes, it most certainly did. In multiple ways, January set new records in player activity. Read on below to discover just how good these records really are.

A short TL;DR in advance:

  • January set multiple records, both for weekly averages and monthly averages
  • The numbers in January are a result of organic growth – the best kind of growth
  • The big question looking forward is how high ACC’s ceiling will be.

In this series of articles – I’ve been doing this since March 2020 – I analyze the playercounts from Assetto Corsa Competizione (ACC) using data from both steamdb and steamcharts. I implement the data into my own spreadsheets, creating my own graphics and tables.

January 2022: comparing daily player counts

A little refresher on the recent timeline. ACCs concurrent player counts had been dwindling. Then, in late November 2021, v1.8 drops resulting in a new concurrent player record. December, i.e. last month, still saw heightened activity riding the coattails of the update. The biggest question last month for me was: would this growth continue, or would it die down again?

Well, the numbers are in. Let us take a look, shall we?

Fig. 1: Peak concurrent player counts for January 2022

I could be short about it, or I could not. From the graph above (appropriately named Figure 1), not a lot can be discerned (yet), so let’s talk about this one first. New Year’s Day kicked off 2022 with a monthly low of 4310 concurrent players. And yet, this number is higher than the highest concurrent player count in July, August, and October 2021. And that says something about the numbers I am about to present to you.

January’s highest peak concurrent player count came out to 6128 on Sunday 30th. Normally, peaks above 6K are either caused by updates, but this one was what I like to call an ‘unassisted’ peak. What’s more, on January 16th the peak was exactly 6000 peak concurrent players, meaning that January 2022 had not one but two unassisted peaks above 6K.

January 2022: comparing weekly player counts

The month shows a slight upward trend, with the trendline running from ~5100 to ~5700. This is also reflected in the weekly averages (see also Figure 2, below). Week ‘0’ (with the tail end of 2021 included) had an average of 4901. The first full week came to 5312, the second 5345. But then…

Fig. 2: Weekly average concurrent player counts.

The third full week of 2022 already sets a new record: it achieved an average of 5498. The previous record (v1.8’s release week in November 2021) of 5420 was broken by 78 players.

This (78 players) doesn’t seem like much. Yes, a new record is nice. But there’s a reason that this one is special. Because remember: these numbers are unassisted numbers. Unassisted by any update or DLC release. This means that this growth represented here is organic growth and not artificial growth. And organic growth is a much better indicator of any game’s health than incidental peaks due to temporary updates. And boy, is ACC growing.

Also, before I forget: the fourth week of 2022 also broke the old record. Madness!

January 2022: comparing monthly player counts

With all these weekly average records, surely this means that January as a whole will also break records, right? Well…

Yes.

Fig. 3: All-time peak and average player counts

There was one number I had not yet revealed: the monthly average. By now, you must have seen it in figure 3 above. January 2022 had a new record average: 5391.

While the record for the weekly average was only 78 higher than the previous record, the monthly average record is now 524 higher than the previous record (4867) set in February 2021.

Understandably, the average player count (grey in the graph above) also set a new record, with 2510 average daily players, i.e. non-concurrent.

Fig. 4: Relative growth since January 2020
Fig. 5: Absolute growth since January 2020

This month’s average is an increase of more than 17% over last month (figure 4, top left), relatively speaking. In absolute numbers (figure 5, top right), this comes down to an increase of 796. The increase in absolute numbers is the second-highest monthly increase since January 2020, with only November 2020 outperforming.

Truly, a remarkable month for Assetto Corsa Competizione.

Looking forward

Last month, I posed a number of challenges for ACC in 2022, as quoted below:

2022 is going to be an interesting year on multiple fronts. At what rate will Kunos be able to publish DLC? Will people stay interested in ACC? How is the confirmed-but-unknown next-gen Assetto Corsa going to influence ACC’s development cycles?

ACC player counts in review: December 2021

None of these challenges have seen any developments in January. However, January has just proven that ACC’s life cycle is far from over.

But now, another interesting challenge arises. Will this momentum ACC has gained attract more players from other games (such as iRacing)? Or will the pool of potential new players quickly run dry?

The amount of people who are interested in simracing is not going to change overnight. Furthermore, simracers tend to focus on one game at a time. This means there is a definite ceiling to the number of people who could potentially play ACC.

There are some developments outside of Kunos’ sphere of influence that might put new waters in the pool of potential players. For instance, Thrustmaster’s new T248 wheel. As of yet, I don’t know whether this new wheel is supposed to replace the T300 or if it will stand alongside it. Whatever will be the case, it will at least temporarily increase the supply of wheels on the market and hopefully drive prices down to normal levels – before corona caused major shortages.

Whatever is the case, we will need to wait and see. The future is bright!

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3 Responses

  1. March 2, 2022

    […] shine, the birds start to sing and the bombs drop in Ukraine, we’ve made it to March. After a record-breaking January 2022, how have Assetto Corsa Competizione’s (ACC) player numbers developed over February 2022? […]

  2. April 5, 2022

    […] January 2022 (avg. 5391, +17.2%) […]

  3. May 2, 2022

    […] April’s lowest peak concurrent player count was 4671, which was set on the final day of April – Saturday April 30th. Record #3, since the previous highest lowest peak concurrent player count was 4310 in January 2022. […]

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