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No Man's Sky Has Dropped to Less Than 1,000 Concurrent Players on Steam

Few gamers are left playing Hello Games' hyped up space sim less than two months after launch.

September 23, 2016 by

No Man’s Sky was supposed to be the biggest game of 2016… and in many ways, it has been. But having the biggest drop in players of not just 2016, but of the last few years, is certainly not one achievement that Sean Murray and his small team at Hello Games were hoping to unlock… and certainly not what gamers were expecting after being promised so much from a game that turned out to deliver so little among its 18 quintillion planets.

At its peak the day it launched, No Man’s Sky reached as high as 212k concurrent players on Steam. But within only its first week, the game lost 78% of its playerbase. And now, less than two months after its launch, things have only gotten worse for No Man’s Sky with the game dropping to under 1,000 players per hour and only peaking at 2,000 players per hour. That’s a 94% drop in just its first 42 days which has taken NMS from the #3 most played game on Steam to #132 today.

Since the time of our first player count story a week after the game’s launch back on August 18, Sean Murray has gone missing. His previously-active Twitter account hasn’t been updated since that day and nobody at Hello Games has had anything to say other than releasing a few minor patches. The developers have even gone as far as closing topics they have control over on Steam that address concern and reference the falling player counts.

While many fans still believe there could be hope for the game with the developers originally promising more content to come after launch, things aren’t looking good for the future of No Man’s Sky. Ubisoft’s The Division had a similar 93% drop earlier this year on Steam and despite multiple content updates, the game never recovered. Considering that there’s been far more outrage geared towards Hello Games and their game’s launch, it’s unlikely that we’ll see No Man Sky climb back up the charts and return anywhere close to its launch day glory.

Update 1/5/2017: The playerbase for NMS saw a huge increase after the game’s first big update in November, however, history has repeated itself and after less than two months the game has again dropped back down to under 1,000 players per hour.