Why did Bethesda let Skyrim go unfinished

Games that have lost almost their entire player base within a few months

By Adam James / .13. July 2017, 10:30 a.m. EDT /. Updated: February 8, 2018, 1:05 p.m. EDT

You only get a first impression - a fact that is not lost in the video game industry, where there is always something different for gamers to play. These days new games risk losing their player base almost as soon as they get them. Sometimes a botched start is to blame. In other cases, a top-quality finished product is little more than a beta test for $ 59.99. Occasionally the stars just don't line up and a competitor is just playing a game that is better than yours. And then there's the simple fact that players can just get bored and move on. Whatever the reason, it's hard to persevere - as these games found out the hard way.

Tom Clancy is the division

Ubisoft's highly anticipated open world third person shooter online only The corporate division Started in March 2016 with critical applause. By June - just three months later - the game had lost 93 percent of its player base.

According to the player base tracking website GitHyp The corporate division fell from a peak of 2.1 million players a day to just 143,000 in just a few months. The much-touted online shooter was taught by the developer as Ubisoft's Fastest-Selling Game of All Time by no means a bad game. However, The corporate division had a fair share of problems and ultimately crippled Ubisoft's hope that the title would become their flagship franchise. Endgame issues - plus matchmaking issues and statistical errors - turn in those who wanted to stay here and cheat and hack the dark zone, especially within the PC community. Additional content and DLC did little to pull players back, proving how easy it is to lose the player base.

Nowadays, The corporate division is far from dead, with less than three percent the game's startup window top is still being played. It's hard to imagine the French developer feeling too bad about the drop in players - considering they got in $ 330 million in five days. That is a serious franc.

For the honor

Ubisoft is no stranger to launching highly anticipated games that their player base is giving up almost immediately. Tom Clancy is the division may have felt the pain, but that was little more than a bee sting compared to For the honorDebacle of a start.

Meet shelves in February 2017, For the honor promised exciting and unique player-versus-player battles in which players can fight either as knights, samurai or vikings in a medieval setting. Sounds great right? Like many games from the top French developer For the honor looked - and in many ways, was-ingenious. Unfortunately, serious technical problems rewarded Ubisoft with a 95 percent reduction in the player base of their new IP in just three months - worse than last year's highly anticipated new IP, The corporate division. In a game that is all about thinking ahead and reacting quickly, Ubisoft decides to run For the honor Having a peer-to-peer connection completely ruins the experience - with frequent outbursts, dropped matches, delay switching, and various other connectivity issues that spoil an otherwise great game. Players who bought For the honor at launch they were seriously disappointed and even organized a boycott of the game - forcing the developers to communicate more directly with those who felt spurned.

Nobody wants a game to fail, but - unfortunately -For the honor was named as another instance where Ubisoft dropped the ball.

Nobody's heaven

When it comes to epic mistakes, Hello Games' Nobody's heaven wrote the book.

The game touted around 18 trillion planets, but it managed to deliver so little electricity Content and gameplay that virtually everyone gave up as soon as they started. According to GitHyp Nobody's heaven peaked on launch day, grabbing more than 212,000 concurrent players on Steam. Less than a week later, 78 percent of those who gave Hello Games' space exploration title a shot simply gave up - realizing that it's little more than an unrewarded, repetitive, boring festival. Not even two full months later Nobody's heaven Fewer than 1,000 players per hour were seen - which resulted in a 94 percent decrease in just 42 days. Not good, Sean Murray. Not good.

Nobody's heavenwas revived shortly after a brief burst of life in November 2016, when Hello Games released the game's first major content expansion for free. It was nowhere near enough, however, and players who returned were giving up on the space exploration game for a second time - far from sealed No Man's Sky's Destiny as one of the greatest disappointments in the history of gaming.

Street Fighter V.

Start in February 2016, Street Fighter V. should be an important console exclusive to Sony's PlayStation 4. Unfortunately, the vast majority of players who picked up the famous fighting game made it - and it worked out quickly.

The sixth numbered game in the legendary fighting series, Street Fighter V. Be more approachable than its predecessor should allow casual gamers the opportunity to learn the ropes and climb the ladder to stardom. Unfortunately, most of the people who tested the water didn't like the temperature. Plaguing the launch of Capcom's title was the severe lack of content, some of which called early adopters Street Fighter V.little more than beta tester. Worse still, matchmaking and connectivity issues have really dashed the excitement of anyone looking for combat experience, and the cessation of anger - which went largely unpunished in the early days - was both widespread and unacceptable. The quitting of the anger was so bad, in fact, a lot of gamers took matters into their own hands, creating threads of video evidence of users pulling out of losing games at the last minute.

Quitters ultimately got what came to them, but the early damage was done. The bad experience was enough to put over 75 percent of the players off after just a dozen matches. Many people who ditched their DualShock 4s have never returned, and Street Fighter V. is currently far outside the mainstream.

Resident Evil 7: Biohazard

Granted, most people only drop games for single player after beating the main story - with replays mostly reserved for performance hunters and hardcore fans. Still Capcoms Resident Evil 7: Biohazard The majority of their players have permanently postponed the survival horror title in quick succession.

According to GitHyp Resident Evil 7 After just a month on the market, 90 percent of the player base disappeared. At the height of the game, Steam averaged 15,000 players per hour. A month later, that number had dropped to 1,500 an hour. One non-exciting DLC ​​deal didn't do much to keep players on board - the season pass was $ 29.99 - and the number of players actually continued to decline after the game's free 'Banned Footage' content update.

Rapidly diminishing player base aside, Resident Evil 7: Biohazard was a pretty big hit for the stagnant franchise, with starting numbers doubling that of Resident Evil 6and the game has been well received by both critics and fans. Still at its best, Resident Evil 7 # 19 on the Steam chart and shareholders apparently weren't impressed - none of which is a compelling argument for pumping development funds Resident Evil 8.

Iron spider suit


Evolve was launched in February 2015 as one of the first hyped 'next-gen' games of the PlayStation 4 / Xbox One generation - with a 4-on-1 gameplay in which this loner can take on the role of a giant monster. It wasn't long, however, before players realized that the game really wasn't all that mattered.

It only took a month for 2K Games' multiplayer-centric first-person shooter to feel the pressure of a rapidly declining player base. Not only did the game receive mixed reviews, but its controversial DLC package - $ 136 total at launch - certainly didn't leave any good taste in a gamer's mouth. During the game, the player base shrank almost daily and steadily decreased until Turtle Rock Studios had no choice but to swallow their pride and Make the Game Free- a last resort for a game that is in retail stores. Costing the game doesn't cost anything to breathe life into the almost dead title, which leads to an hourly increase in the number of players by 36,000 percent. However, this high did not last long and Develop crashed badly after the initial boost wore off - which ultimately led to the developers ending support for the somewhat disappointing game.

These days anyone who wants to give this game a chance is waiting for one in a match making lobby Long Time.


The MOBA-inspired first person shooter from 2K Games Battle-born was doomed from the start - and failed too, with the vast majority of players losing almost instantly.

Gearbox Software, the studio behind the popular Border areas Series, poured more than two years of resources into the creation of Battle-bornonly to have their first-person MOBA completely overshadowed by Blizzard's stellar play in the same veinOverwatch. Battle-born In fact, got off to such a rough start that it sold just three weeks after it hit shelves - and has since been cut by more than 80 percent on various online sales. The game only saw 12,101 players concurrently on launch day, and absolutely declined in the days and weeks that followed. In a desperate attempt to keep the game alive, the developers made the game free in all respects - thereby allowing free access to the game's online multiplayer with only a limited selection of characters. Meanwhile, Overwatch has won multiple awards for Game of the Year and has millions of players - with no sign of slowing down.

Sometimes the stars just don't align. In other cases, a competitor is simply playing the same game as you - and it gets a lot better.

Pokémon GO

Niantics mobile app Pokémon GO took America - and the world - by storm when it launched in July 2016. However, by September, the game was largely abandoned by all but the most dedicated smartphone Pokémon trainers.

According to comScore reports Pokémon GOreached its peak on July 13, 2016: In the US alone, 28.5 million users experience the monster-catching augmented reality game. Almost nine million of these users will give up playing by the end of the first month. By the following month, nearly two-thirds of the top users of the app decided they'd had enough of the buzz. Nonetheless, Niantic had great success in its hands, profiting from the nostalgic need of millennials to catch everyone, while proving that thePokémon Brand is as important as ever.

Titan Fall

Respawn's first iteration in the Titan Fall The series was supposed to be the first true 'next-gen' title of this generation - which fueled the console wars and aroused legitimate jealousy among PlayStation 4 early adopters. Unfortunately, the game was dominated by content and the player base quickly declined.

Granted, most competitive online first person shooters see a sharp drop in active users a few months after launch - with the call of Duty and Battlefield Series are the only titles that are immune to this phenomenon. However, Titan Fall wasn't just an online shooter. It was one in every way only online First person shooters - especially the lack of a single player campaign or content for users who don't want to play the same types of matches against trash-speaking teenagers every day. Since this is an exclusive Xbox One version, the player base was initially severely limited, and many players on the console quickly switched to other titles.

Chief Engineer John Shiring defends Titan autumn against allegations of player base problems in an interview with PlayStationLifeStyleand said to Alex Co: "Yes, in Titanfall 1, we saw the population go down ... this is a hot topic for me so I apologize but when I've spoken to a lot of other people the reality is that the rate of people dropping is ours Curve is identical to that of all other games. Really, it's just the number of people you have on the start day that will decide where your curve will be, but the shape will still be the same. '

Accept thatOverwatch.


When Ubisoft is eagerly awaited Watchdog After years of hype, the game hit shelves on May 27, 2014, selling four million units on the market in its first week. These staggering sales not only made Ubisoft the fastest-selling game of all time (up to The corporate divisionarrived in 2016) but the most successful launch of a new IP in the entire video game industry.

The hype didn't last long. According to the player tracking websiteSteam cards, Watchdog The peak was in May 2014 with 47,820 simultaneous players. Just two months later that number had fallen to 3,606. That's an amazing drop, especially for an open world game with an online component that's not entirely dissimilar Grand Theft Auto V.. So what's up?

AlthoughWatchdog Has been well received by critics, with many players finding it lacking - a solid game with a solid storyline, but nothing that players would consider particularly revolutionary or exciting. Perhaps the biggest black mark was the fact that it didn't look like the early E3 fans, instead proving yet another Ubisoft downgraded title- something harder for all developers to find these days.

Despite the decline Watchdog has been incredibly successful for Ubisoft. Guard dogs 2, however ... not that much.

Fallout 4

Supported by a clever and unusually fast processing from the announcement to the publication, Fallout 4 became Bethesda's most successful game at launch. The post-apocalyptic title even turned out to be the publisher's greatest success,The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. In terms of stamina, however Fallout 4 didn't last long in the open world of the gaming industry.

Fallout 4was checked as good as all expected but not how Skyrim,Many players felt bored and unimpressed. according toSteam cardsIn November 2015, the game peaked at 471,955 concurrent players. In February of the following year, that number fell by an astonishing 410,216 to 61,739. While the latter sum is still nothing to scoff at, it is certainly a disappointing drop. In almost every way the game turned out to be more of a title, if it's not broken, don't fix it, than something really new and exciting.

However, what really killed Bethesda's title and kept him out of the game of the year competition was that CD Projekt Red was near perfect The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt.Soak up awards left and right, The Witcher 3 changed the way most people saw what an open roleplaying game could be. With its massive, beautifully rendered open world, meaningful and engaging side quests, and carefully crafted storylines The Witcher 3 madeFallout 4 seem like something more than a glorified last generation title.

Star Wars Battlefront

If that is eagerly awaited Star Wars Battlefront Hit stores in November 2015, it sold extremely well. Unfortunately, players dropped the game faster than a Snowspeeder towing cable would drop an AT-AT.

Stars Wars Battlefront receive strictly decent reviews, but hardcore fans of the franchise were also delighted with the finished product. Aside from some offline games disguised as single player content, there was nothing in the game to get in the way of a campaign.Worse, the sheer lack of multiplayer modes and content in general made it difficult for anyone to stick with it for more than a few weeks.

Steep player drop-offs are rarely experienced by EA DICE first person shooters. Only six months later, in fact war of starsBattle front started, even more people played in 2013Battlefield 4. According to BFcentral.net, which tracks data through EA multiplayer servers, Battlefield 4had 50% more active players than Star Wars Battlefrontwhich itself was undoubtedly supported by the publication of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

For sure,Star Wars Battlefront was visually stunning, with incredibly authentic sound effects and music, but you can only take so much of the same thing. There just wasn't enough to do, and no publisher can expect gamers to be left without really compelling content.

Avant-garde: saga of heroes

Avant-garde: saga of heroes was an ill-fated high-fantasy massive multiplayer online role-playing game originally developed by Sigil Games Online and co-published by Sony Online Entertainment. The game came out on January 30, 2007 - or January 26 - for the poor souls who pre-ordered - and initially sold very well. Unfortunately, the game was released six months early, and those who picked it up at launch gave it up almost immediately after launch.

Chief designer Brad McQuaid openly explained why Avant-garde: saga of heroes lost its player base in an interview with IGN., admitted that the game, client and server were not optimized, so said that 'the vast majority of people who played it early on left the game when their characters reached level two or three' .

As McQuaid further pointed out, any MMO designer would understand what those statistics meant - that people couldn't even play the game. 'Some people stuck to it. You saw the potential. But the majority couldn't play it at a quality level that was actually fun, ”he added. “Even at the lowest settings, people struggled. Your frame rate was terrible. The latency was bad. It was just a pain in the butt to play. '

Sony tried to revive the game, howeverAvant-garde: saga of heroes was shut down forever on July 31, 2014.

Allods Online

Allods Online is a free massively multiplayer online role-playing game developed for Windows. Critics and gamers alike were delighted with the game's official release Engadget Praise the World of Warcraft Clones beautiful graphics and leave the reader with a very positive impression. However, when the game arrived in North America in May 2011, a bad decision by the publishers put off almost anyone who gave the game a chance.

Allods Online It started with an absolutely gruesome item shop that immediately resulted in the game's forums being blown up on allegations that the title was pay-to-win - the worst result for a free game. Instead of just selling cosmetic or bland utility items, Allods Online sold players respawn, in all respects. Basically, if you died in the game, you would be hit in the face with a 'Fear of Death' debuff that reduced your offensive stats by 25% ... unless, of course, you dropped hard-earned real-life money . This did not go down well, of course, and most people ended their adventure in the astral when they first died.

In the end, Allods Online removed this horrific money robbery, but the damage was already done. To make matters worse, the game continued to sell other pay-to-win items and even went so far as to launch a premium pay-to-play server for people who wanted to experience the game 'how it was played should be'. No thank you.

Total War: Rome II

The eighth standalone game by Creative Assembly in the long-running series, Total War: Rome II was a great commercial success. The game has proven itself a top seller for SEGA, selling more copies than any other game in the series' history. However, many early adopters were released on bail almost immediately after the game began.

Total War: Rome II lost the vast majority of its player base in just a month. According to Steam cardsIn August 2013, the game peaked at 118,240 concurrent players. By the next month, that number had dropped to 37,686. So what happened

Two words: artificial intelligence. Those looking to expand their empires found that the game's artificial intelligence showed very little interest in expanding. Those who wanted to use the game's siege equipment found their units completely uninterested in building it, nor would they use any manually placed in front of them. Worse still, units would often storm, then withdraw immediately, or simply stop in place - probably not the way the Romans actually fought. Instead of a war simulation, players were treated to a nonsensical, flawed mess.

All in all, Total War: Rome II turned out to be not only unpolished, but unfinished in every way. And while the game was still received positively by most of its critics, user reviews have been far less generous - resulting in a rapidly declining player base.

Dead star

Developed and published by Armature Studio, the two-racket, space-themed multiplayer online battle arenaDead star was in fact dead in just a few months.

Dead star arrived on April 5, 2016 for PC and PlayStation 4. Many people had the opportunity to join the fight as the game was included as one of the two free monthly titles for PlayStation Plus subscribers around 20 million users had at least access to the game. And while it's impossible to say exactly how many users actually played the game, it's safe to assume that a decent chunk of PlayStation Plus subscribers have at least messed it up. Unfortunately, the game shut down its servers in November of the same year, meaning almost everyone stopped twirling.

Although Dead star Only survived seven months, it's hard to imagine people have played it more than a couple of times. Which is a shame because the game really wasn't that bad - it just wasn't Well, either. With no real hooks or incentives for players to keep coming back to learn more, Dead star was quickly abandoned by almost everyone who picked it up.