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Outriders has had enough players for Square Enix to stick with it

"Poised to be the company’s next big franchise," they say

Outriders seemed poised to be one of those games. You know the sort - the kind that's good fun to play but not exciting enough to get much attention. I expected to make a glib remark about Outriders in 2022 and be fully roasted for it by no more than six people. Outriders, it seemed, would be a real Stadia of a game.

Not so, say Square Enix. In a press release today, they say the looter-shooter has had 3.5 million players in its first month, which is successful enough that they're looking towards "expanding on Outriders in the future."

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The stat - part of a set splurged in a Twitter thread - doesn't reflect sales, mind. Outriders would have received a decent boost in players by being included with Xbox Game Pass from launch day. Perhaps more impressive then is that the average playtime is apparently 31 hours. Either some people like the game enough to keep playing it, or one guy left it running on his PC four weeks ago and forgot.

Outriders had a bit of a rocky launch, with players struggling to connect to servers for its first few days. In today's release, Jon Brooke, co-head of studio at Square Enix External Studios, says that they will "continue to listen carefully and want to assure everyone that we are committed to improving and enhancing the experience in the coming weeks and months."

Launch issues aside, we liked the game plenty in our Outriders review, with Steve Hogarty calling it "wildly entertaining", though ultimately he didn't consider it varied enough to stick with. Then again, Steve hasn't written for us since, so maybe he's had the game running for the past 910 hours.

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