Which investigators are most popular on ArkhamDB.com?

Following my first post about the ArkhamDB.com data, lots of people asked questions about popularity of cards/investigators over time. In this post, I’ll begin to take a look. This post will focus on the Investigators. I’ll look at cards in future posts. First up – how many decks are created for each faction? The first chart shows the number of decks

Out of all the decks, then, who comes out on top? Who’s the most popular on ArkhamDB?

It’s Jenny Barnes! Everyone loves the Dilettante, with her bags of cash and wonderful weapons.

You’re number 1!

Of course, Jenny’s been around for ever, and you can see in the chart above that the 10 most popular Investigators all come from the Core Set or Dunwich Legacy (the first deluxe campaign).

Let’s look at the data in a different way. Instead of looking at total number of decks, let’s see how they rank in number of new decks each month. In the next few charts, I’m going to use a bump chart, which shows ranks over time.

Those Rogues: it’s clearly not just Jenny. The Rogues are the most popular faction. The chart also shows that the Rogues have only recently taken the top slot from the Guardians. And look at those Mystics: ranked at the bottom for an entire year (excluding Neutral – but there’s only one investigator in that class (Lola Hayes).

Now let’s look at the investigators ranks over time. The next set of charts contains all the Investigators. In the first one, I’ve highlighted the Core Set investigators.

Ah, Roland! With his rounded stats and ability to Search and Fight: it’s no wonder he’s the most popular Core Set investigator. Daisy’s in at number 2. The Investigator that is most intriguing is Agnes Baker. She was wallowing near the bottom of the table recently, but has gone from 22nd most popular to 15th most popular in recent months.

A rising star!

Moving on to Dunwich Legacy, we see a bunch of investigators with enduring popularity.

In December 2018, every Dunwich Legacy investigator was in the top 10. There’s Jenny – a reliable number 1, but you can see that Rex, Zoe and Pete all sit near the top of the table.

Carcosa came next but I’ve not included the chart for those investigators, as they’ve all been middle-of-the-table performers. You can investigate them yourselves in the interactive version of this chart (link at the bottom).

The Forgotten Age investigators, however, are interesting. Here they are:

Finn’s come in hot and sits just behind Jenny. The top 2 most popular investigators in December 2018 were both Rogues!

Ursula is bouncing back, but look at poor Calvin Wright. Only 9 Calvin decks were built in December 2018. The guys on Drawn to the Flame love playing Calvin but the community at large doesn’t seem to know what to make of him. Have you done a Calvin deck? I’ve not played Calvin. I confess I don’t quite know what to make of him.

Poor Calvin – no wonder he looks so anguished: the community don’t love him!

For the final chart, I’ve highlighted the Rogues. They fall into two categories: the popular and the less popular.

Jenny and Finn? The Community love ’em. Skids and Sefina? Not so much.

That’s all for now. If you want to explore the data for yourself, there’s an interactive version on Tableau Public. It’s not very well optimised for mobile, I’m afraid, as Bump Charts need quite a lot of space)

I hope you enjoy these. Let me know what other questions you’d be interested in seeing the answers to.


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Thank you so much for coming up with this useful, awesome analysis.
I’m kinda new to the game and I still struggle with so many options among investigators and decks. However, a first look at the data presented here makes me think of me consider different aspects when choosing a character to put into play.

Isn’t it skewed towards first expansion and core? First of all, naturally number of decks is really correlated with how long given investigator is available. Secondly, I suppose most of people buy Dunwich as their first. You don’t know much about game yet, just finished demo campaign, so just want to be save and start with first one.

Just normalize it by number of decks for given expansion, otherwise it’s just the ranking for core/dunwich.

Four years later, I would love to see this updated. I stumbled over this while looking for information on which investigators are best loved, but now the analyst in me also wants to hypothesize test how the new release format will affect consumer acquisition patterns.

I’d agree with Micheal that I would like to see what this looks like when normalized by total number of decks per cycle. Since nearly everyone will start by making their first decks with the core, the original five are likely to show high numbers of monthly decks created forever, regardless of how well-liked they actually are by players who have others to compare.

After the core, though, what will people buy now that they don’t have to buy the investigators and campaigns together? I suspect we’ll see a 2021 blip where the release of Edge of the Earth as the FIRST new-format cycle threw a bit of a wrench into the normal acquisition pattern after that, with many recent new players like me getting that as their first expansion. However, as the other cycles are now being released in the new format, I think that will be a short lived anomaly. I think Dunwich is likely to remain to go-to second investigator expansion for most people, and Carcosa after that, because they have so many critical deck-building cards.

I suspect the investigators from other cycles are going to fall behind significantly from that point, even more than they did in the past. I think at least some new players will decide two or three (or whatever their particular threshold is) investigator expansions are plenty to work with, but will want to experience more storylines, and will therefore purchase only the campaign parts of other releases. Just my hypothesis!

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