Diablo 4 rapidly losing players less than one month after launch of Season of the Malignant

A Nightmare difficulty task awaits the devs.
Season of the Malignant art for Diablo 4
Image via Blizzard Entertainment

Despite a successful launch, Diablo 4 is hemorrhaging players just a few weeks into the game’s first season, as interest in the game has fallen due to some disappointing seasonal content, some poorly received changes, and one standout competitor.

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While Blizzard does not directly release player count numbers, many third-party sites do their own tracking, and virtually all of the major ones indicate a substantial drop off in Diablo 4 player numbers. According to data on ActivePlayer.io, the average player daily count has dropped from over one million at the end of July to just 400K over the past 300 days, with the game supposedly losing 122K monthly players over the same timeframe. MMO-Population.com also displays a drop-off in player numbers.

The same effect can also be seen in Twitch viewership. According to SullyGnome, average and peak viewership dropped significantly from the game’s launch to the start of Season of the Malignant, and dropped again from the start of the season to now.

The drop-off in interest, players, and viewership can be attributed to a number of factors. In general, seasonal games do tend to trail off after an exciting launch, with little spikes that occur when new seasons launch, only for those to trail off as well. In addition, Diablo 4‘s seasonal launch did not go smoothly, with many players exiting the ecosystem quickly due to lackluster seasonal content, unwelcome bugs and balance changes, and a slew of other issues.

Related: Diablo 4 devs are looking for reinforcements after disastrous first season

To make matters worse, a shiny new competitor in the RPG space has also completely stolen the spotlight. Baldur’s Gate 3 was released to overwhelming acclaim and success a couple of weeks ago, and while every game eventually has to compete with a newer release, a game with issues like Diablo 4 is facing had no chance against one of the highest-rated games of all time.

Related: Baldur’s Gate 3 vs Diablo 4—which should you play?

The team at Diablo 4 is going to have to do some serious soul-searching in order to get back what they’ve lost, but that’s an endeavor that could take a long time.

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Author
Scott Robertson
VALORANT lead staff writer, also covering CS:GO, FPS games, other titles, and the wider esports industry. Watching and writing esports since 2014. Previously wrote for Dexerto, Upcomer, Splyce, and somehow MySpace. Jack of all games, master of none.