Niko uses both internally collected and secondary sources of information to build its economic, games market, and other models.  This includes, but is not limited to, Niko proprietary gamer surveys, industry interviews and surveys, I-cafe tracking data, company financial reports, government and official statistics, as well as other publicly available information. We collect more than 400,000 points of data from Chinese gamers in Tiers 1/2/3/4 annually, plus data from more than 335,000 Internet cafe gaming sessions in Tiers 1/2/3/4 monthly.

In building our market sizing model, we comb through the financial statements of the publicly traded online game operators to see their disclosed revenues, and make calculations about the portion coming from the various segments of online games.  These data points are confirmed whenever possible through other sources but generally we assume the financial data reported in statements to be correct and true.  We also have modeled the revenues of these public companies relative to the full market, and have developed a proprietary tool to extrapolate to the larger market.  For the market forecasts, Niko uses inputs from macroeconomic data and regulatory policies, as well as proprietary information that we collect from our surveys, interviews, and analysis.  We also track trends from our 10+ years of historical data and project outward, combining that data with the information gleaned from the interviews.

For our annual and ongoing surveys, we use a mix of consumer gamer surveys, operator and developer surveys, as well as monthly I-cafe PC tracking data.  Each of these surveys is detailed in separate reports during the year, and one should refer to those reports for information on specific methodologies, timeframes, and other details.

Our Top 10 games lists are derived by coming up with estimates about the user numbers of each major game, calling the online operator of that game, calling online operators of other games, triangulating data, and landing on our estimates of average concurrent users (ACU) and peak concurrent users (PCU) for each game. Then we rank based on ACU data.