And so it comes to this, the end of the year and the start of a new one. It’s nice to be able to look back over the past year and see how things have progressed and I think, personally and for the Nexus, 2012 will go down as a good year.
Lets begin with some exciting news; by the start of 2013 the Nexus will have had its 5 millionth registered member. As I write we’re at the 4,998,536 member mark, so by the time the clock strikes midnight in the UK we’ll have passed well beyond the threshold. What a great way to start the new year! And that means our member base increased by two thirds in 2012 from 3 million members at the start of 2012 to 5 million members by the end of it. Incredible.
This Christmas and New Year period has seen our traffic rise back to the highs of when Skyrim and the Creation Kit were released back in November of last year and February of this year respectively. I wasn’t quite expecting it, but what with everyone being on holiday and the Steam sales providing super discounts on pretty much all the games we have Nexus sites for we’ve had a huge influx of traffic (which, coincidentally, is why you might have been seeing a few traffic related errors recently). The all time traffic record on Skyrim Nexus was 700,000 unique visitors back in February. Yesterday we had 680,000. Modding is very much alive.
Since the beginning of the year we’ve launched 7 new Nexus sites for Dark Souls, Fallen Enchantress, Legend of Grimrock, Mount & Blade, Neverwinter Nights, World of Tanks and XCOM. We’ve also announced support for 2 upcomings games, War for the Overworld, which we’ve helped to successfully fund via Kickstarter, and Project Eternity with another site due to be announced sometime soon. In 2013 I plan to continue to support games that I think are in need of a centralised modding resource, and will continue to work with any game developers who are interested in utilising the great wealth of talent this community possesses to ensure the modding scene for their game is the best it can be.
We’ve doubled the number of servers we have running the sites from 8 to 16, and my new years resolution for the sites is to look into load-balancing and clustering solutions that can ensure full redundancy and performance improvements so that high-traffic related errors on the site become a thing of the past. It’ll cost a pretty penny, but handling the Nexus finances with extreme care and forward planning has been one of my main creeds since I started running these sites back in the middle of the mod hosting site disarray during the Morrowind years. We’ve also hired on two more full-time employees to help with the coding for the sites and NMM, and we’re still on the lookout for another full-time programmer
to help us with NMM. The guys have worked hard this year, and while things haven’t progressed as fast as I would have hoped, they’ve earned a good long rest over the Christmas period and they’ve been off for the past couple of weeks. Except Axel. Because he’s a bit of an odd one and he actually seems to enjoy his work.
We’ve got lots of plans for the network in 2013, none of which I’m going to talk about, and all of which involve modding. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. While other sites and networks look to diversify by getting into everything and anything to do with gaming we’re going to stick to and focus on what these sites have always been about. Modding. I think once you start looking at and diversifying into other areas your original focus becomes blurred and your original product becomes diluted, and that’s not what I want to happen at all. We’re all here because we like games, but predominantly because we like modding and we want mods. Lets stick to that. I might eat my words when I invoke my master plan of changing the focus of the sites into LOLCAT Nexus, but by then it will be too late and I’ll have you all hook, line and sinker. Queue evil laugh.
If 2013 turns out anything like 2012 I’ll be a very happy bunny by the end of it. And that’s just a turn of phrase, I’m not a furry lover. I hope you can all look back on 2012 as fondly as I can and that you’ve got some great plans to bring in the New Year in style, and safely (if it hasn’t already passed for you).