Dead Island Best Selling New IP. Probably.

By John Walker on December 21st, 2011 at 1:50 pm.

He's probably the cleverest zombie of all time.

RPS is probably the most visited website on the internet, knocking Google and YouTube into an embarrassing runner-up position. I don’t have accurate data, but it was.

Meanwhile, we’ve just received an email letting us know that Techland’s Tomasz Gawlikowski says, “Dead Island is probably the best selling new IP in this year”.

Michal Kowal of Polish game blog giernik.pl spoke with Techland’s PR bod, and he translated a portion of it for us (and Kotaku and Joystiq).

Michal Kowal: 3 millions copies of Dead Island in 3 months… Sounds impresive…

Tomasz Gawlikowski: In this year there weren’t a lot of big, new IP in games. In the Autumn there was Dead Island and Rage. I don’t remember any other new franchise, but there were a lot of big sequels. And Dead Island sold very, very well. I don’t have accurate data but I think that we probably made the best selling new IP in year 2011. Also Dead Island is the best selling game in history of Polish game development.

Kowal: What is next for Techland? Dead Island will be yours primary franchise? What about Call of Juarez?

Tomasz Gawlikowski: We never thought abut making one game in the place of another. I mean, in 2011 we made Dead Island – an action RPG from and FPS view. Also we made, Call of Juarez: The Cartel which is a shooter, and a racing game, Nail’d. In the future we don’t want to limit ourselves to one title or genre.

Kowal: It was a good year for techland?

Tomasz Gawlikowski: Despite the fact of economic recession it was a very good year for us. We don’t have any reasons to complain.

Which is all great news, really. But I do love a PR guessing at such a claim. What are your guesses for the games of 2011?

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78 Comments »

  1. Velvetmeds says:

    Huh. They’re Polish? Their games never felt polished to me

  2. simoroth says:

    Edit: Ok to clarify:

    Best new IP: Frozen Synapse!

    I liked it so much I now work for them. :D

  3. Raiyan 1.0 says:

    Well yeah, barely any competition in the new-shooter-IP category, since most of the stuff were sequels this year – Modern Warfare 3, Battlefield 3, Gears of War 3, Serious Sam 3, Uncharted 3, Deus Ex 3, Saints Row 3, Resistance 3, narrowly missed Mass Effect 3, and certainly no Half Life 3.

  4. Jimbo says:

    L.A. Noire?

    • Phinor says:

      L.A. Noire has definitely sold more but they probably just forgot the game. Not a big deal, both games sold very, very well.

    • Jimbo says:

      To be fair, L.A. Noire is very forgettable.

    • thegooseking says:

      Yeah, L.A. Noire has sold at least 4 million not even including PC.

  5. Kerchenko says:

    “Also Dead Island is the best selling game in history of Polish game development.”

    Ahem. Witcher 2 anyone?

    • Jimbo says:

      TW2 won’t have sold 3 million copies on PC.

    • Velvetmeds says:

      Witcher 2 sold less because it’s PC only (for now). Dead island on 360 alone sold pretty much the same TW2 did on PC (and thus, in total)

    • Raiyan 1.0 says:

      Witcher 2 sold 200,000+ copies through digital distribution, and 700,000+ copies through retail.

      A PC exclusive sold more through retail. Yep.

    • simoroth says:

      People can fly are from Poland no?

      Didn’t they do that game with all the bullets and storming?

    • Calneon says:

      @ Raiyan 1.0: It was cheaper bought retail, you get loads of goodies in the box if you buy retail. I’m not surprised it sold better in retail. I still buy most of my games from Amazon or some other online retailer, generally because it’s cheaper and I like having a physical copy of the game.

    • Raiyan 1.0 says:

      Oh, I wasn’t suggesting that it’s not without good reasons (I found the collector’s pack pretty worthy). It’s just that it seems abnormal with the way how retailers refuse to stock PC games, and apparently how PC gaming would be dead without digital distribution (as that one ArmA dev said).

  6. Inglourious Badger says:

    2011 is officially the year of PERMADEATH with more games involving permadeath coming out than in any other year. This has been proven by a comprehensive study of my memory which can list 3 permadeath games this year and 1 previous to this year, therefore = FACT

  7. catska says:

    Good, it’s a great game and they deserve success. Everyone else has been hammering the zombie thing to hell but they took some risks and made the zombie RPG that I’ve been waiting for. High lethality means you really have to be careful and can’t just run around laying waste to everything (first of the north star mods excluded) and the focus around analog melee combat instead of boring guns (been done before) made it so you could get surrounded and ganged up on easily, adding to the tension.

    People got hyped on that CG trailer and expected some emotional story and were letdown with the real game. I didn’t care for the trailer (cg tripe) but was pleasantly surprised by the game.

    • Juan Carlo says:

      Yeah, it’s far from a perfect game, but I probably had more visceral, mindless, fun with “Dead Island” than any other game released this year.

      Now if they;d only release a rogue like permadeath mode for the game I would be on cloud 9!

    • steviesteveo says:

      The balance seems to be a little strange. It’s an absolutely gruelling game on your own but once you play it as a co-op it gets really quite simple. There’s only so much a zombie can do against 4 players with shotguns.

    • Dreamhacker says:

      Personally I thought the story and atmosphere were just top notch. Humanity got NO breaks during the whole game.

      The church in part 2 was probably the epithome of “Jesus, you’re all going to die!” along with sad music.

      It’s too bad they didn’t get into more detail with the characters’ backstories, though.

    • Stromko says:

      I rented it on console first to get a taste of it. Came away after a few days unimpressed. However, it came up on a steam sale and my brother bought it for me. It’s the only game I own that is unplayable due to all-encompassing graphical glitches. The only thing that’s visible on characters is their hair and eyebrows, fire and other particles are visible through the floor from any distance, and most prevalently everything is obscured by a flat bluish fog.

      As for what I didn’t like about the actual working game on console, the characters you can choose are all terrible characters in their own way, the RPG and item mechanics aren’t very enchanting compared to even the slightly-disappointing Borderlands, and the combat is only fun because of the analog controls. It’s not terrible, just not very good, and that’s just when it works.

  8. HilariousCow says:

    Only slightly related: anyone see Campster’s Errant Signal episode on Dead Island, and the issues of artistry in game development in general? It’s really rather good. I recommend it highly: http://www.errantsignal.com/blog/?p=154

  9. jon_hill987 says:

    There were not exactly many new IPs this year though were there? I mean we got more Portal, more Deus Ex, More The Elder Scrolls, more Call of Duty, more Battlefield… the list goes on.

    • Blackcompany says:

      This is, rather unfortunately, very true. I can think of four or five new IP’s this year, but most were indie games. Dungeon Defenders, Orcs (Must Die) and Rage. Of those three, two came from the Indie scene. So yeah not much competition this year from new IP’s. Not like Hard Reset was going to outsell it, with its only being a PC release.
      .
      Here’s to hoping this lack of new IP’s is only temporary. A fellow can dream, right…?

    • Raiyan 1.0 says:

      By the way, does anyone know how well Hard Reset sold? How’s the Flying Wild Hog studio?

    • Velvetmeds says:

      Probably not very well. Price dropped 10€ pretty quickly, it’s 50% off on Steam’s sale and might even go lower than that on a daily. I’ll be grabbing it before the sale is over

    • psyk says:

      orcs must die is indie? so that must mean halo wars and age of empire online and 3 are also indie?

      http://www.robotentertainment.com/games/halowars

      People need to drop the use of indie it has no meaning anymore is just used to sound trendy.

    • TODD says:

      Who cares? Most of the sequels you named were excellent.

    • jon_hill987 says:

      @TODD: Deus Ex, CoD and Battlefield not included.

      And yes, Indie does not mean low budget, download only or retro graphics. It means independently developed and published.

    • Dominic White says:

      You heard psyk – if you’ve ever worked for a larger company, you can’t call yourself indie. Farbs, you’ve been outed!

    • psyk says:

      http://www.neowin.net/news/microsoft-to-publish-orcs-must-die-for-xbox-360-and-pc

      Published by MICROSOFT

      Game – Publisher
      AOE 3 – Microsoft Game Studios
      AOE Online – Microsoft Game Studios
      Halo wars – Microsoft Game Studios
      Hero Academy – Robot Entertainment
      Orcs must die – Microsoft Game Studios

      Spot the indie game

    • Starky says:

      Independent simply means that a games company isn’t owned by a publisher (and so it retains ownership of any IP it creates) – nothing more nothing less – Robot Entertainment ARE an independent studio, they are not tied to any publisher, and Orcs must die was self funded by the company.

      Having a distribution deal with Microsoft makes no difference, plenty of independent studios use publishers to get distribution deals (such a EA partners).

      This whole indie not indie bullshit is exactly that.

    • Malawi Frontier Guard says:

      Indie is a scam.

    • CMaster says:

      @Starky
      To me, Indie games have to be more independent than that – they have to be funded only by the developer or by sources of cash that don’t result in any creative control (ie not a Games Publisher). So by my definiton, Valve are Indie, while it would seem OMD isn’t.

  10. johnpeat says:

    New IP is really, really, really scarce amongst big selling games – recent year-end charts have shown Top 50s which contain maybe one or two new IPs at best.

    A quick scan on the 2011 figures shows that the Wii’s Zumba Fitness game is as likely to be the biggest selling new IP of the year!!

    That’s how little imagination games makers and buyers actually have across-the-board.

  11. RegisteredUser says:

    I totally agree, Dead Island is THE hype right now.

    So, has anyone had any experience with the new Skyrim patch yet that comes with the 4 GB large address awareness included? Any backward dragons or onehand glitchs or stuff?

    Is it a good un?

  12. JFS says:

    What is this “IP” everyone is speaking of? I hate it when stuff like “IP” and “franchise” is used instead of “game” or “series”. Just hate it. And I don’t believe Dead Island was the best selling new IP of 2011. Minecraft came out this year. Okay now I’m cheating.

    • Prime says:

      Gods, I so glad someone else feels this way! I detest the term, so cold, so clinical, so chock full of business-wank, and I don’t believe it’s at all helpful when talking about games, and yet it seems to have become short-hand for anything remotely new in gaming. Back when Blizzard;s new MMO was being speculated over, the phrase cropped up in practically every second comment! Aarrgh!

    • johnpeat says:

      Game is super vague and would be impossible to use as a replacement for IP in any meaningful context

      Series is a tough one because the retentives will come out with “oh it’s not part of the series” (Mario and Sonic at the Olympics, for example, is not a Mario or Sonic ‘series’ game)

      Franchise it’s as bad as IP surely anyway? :)

      IP is a relatively tame term, really – it’s people who use meaningless shit like SKU who should be boiled in badger piss…

  13. DocSeuss says:

    I’m going to guess that Rage and LA Noire outsold it… maybe? NPD’s numbers for Rage in October were only 550k… huh.

    Why’d it do so poorly? It was a really solid game.

    • johnpeat says:

      They probably had to take into account the fact that almost ever ‘collectors edition’ copy lacked the codes to make it a collectors edition – resulting in massive returns ;)

      That and the fact that it might have been a new IP but it didn’t have an original idea in it’s entire codebase…

  14. dontnormally says:

    Call of Juarez: The Cartel which is a shooter, and a racing game, Nail’d.

    Um, nail’d what?

  15. hypercrisis says:

    probably something less interesting in reality, like Bulletstorm.

    • Raiyan 1.0 says:

      Bulletstorm couldn’t even recoup its development costs.

  16. Navagon says:

    I’d actually like to think that Dead Island did well. Anything that further demonstrates there’s a market for (relatively) open world games like this, Saints Row 3 and Skyrim over rail-roaded manshoots is all to the good of the industry as far as I’m concerned.

  17. greenbananas says:

    Wot? Best selling “new IP” of the year is a game that’s a (rather) inferior xerox of the 2 most popular zombie games around, AND it was broken on release? Lol, gaming industry, say it ain’t so!

  18. matrices says:

    What a laughably meaningless assertion. “Best new IP” in a year utterly dominated by games that were the third, fourth, and fifth in their respective franchises (most of which were also awesome).