If there’s anything we’ve learned from some recent game launches, it’s that making a video game isn’t easy. Between the pressure from big studios and the pre-release hype that surrounds big releases, there is always something lingering that can make a game’s launch less than stellar.
So, let’s take a look at some recent video games that failed to launch to the hype levels fans had set for them.
Metal Gear Survive
Konami found out the hard way that you’re really not supposed to rip a creator’s brain child away from them and then soullessly cash in on it. After kicking Hideo Kojima to the curb following the excellent Metal Gear Solid 5, Konami farted out whatever Survive is.
The poor reception of the game was followed by abysmal sales, and Konami has indefinitely shelved the Metal Gear series as a result.
Of course, this news isn’t all bad: Kojima went on to work with Sony in creating Death Stranding, an extremely weird (and good!) game that feels much like his classic work with Metal Gear. So, while Survive was a big stinker, at least we got Death Stranding out of the deal. Of course, hardcore Metal Gear fans would have likely rather seen Metal Gear 6.
The confused and strange Marvel’s Avengers, made by Crystal Dynamics, looks very weird. And not just because the superheroes in the game are explicitly made to not look like their Marvel Cinematic Universe counterparts, though that is pretty weird.
No, the game looks weird because it can’t decide whether it’s a AAA action game with a focus on story and singleplayer or if it’s a live-service looting brawler in the vein of Destiny.
Marvel’s Avengers isn’t the first game to stumble where Destiny has soared, but it has done so in a spectacular way. At the time of this writing, some ninety-two percent of the game’s playerbase has stopped playing in the months since release. Square Enix shared recently that the game was directly responsible for the staggering $48 million loss in the second quarter.
That’s a huge drop-off for what Square Enix and Crystal Dynamics hoped was going to be one of the biggest games of the year.
Anthem is the poster child of missteps in launching a game. The title stumbled out of the gate, featuring bland gameplay, a nonexistant story, and uninspiring visuals that all centered around the hope that players would turn the game into a lifestyle or hobby like an MMO.
However, none of that panned out, with developer BioWare promising to overhaul the game and bring it up to a better quality. Almost two years after the title’s initial launch, however, the game is still limping along with hilariously low player counts and no signs that BioWare has learned from their mistakes.
Anthem was the nail in the coffin for many BioWare fans after the poor reception of the company’s other recent endeavors. Mass Effect 3’s ending drew criticism, as did the entirety of Mass Effect Andromeda. Following Anthem’s disastrous launch, many have wondered if the BioWare that made Knights of the Old Republic and Mass Effect 2 is simply a thing of the past.