Review scores for Outriders are dropping fast following the game’s third day of server instability and reliance on always-online gameplay.
Much-anticipated shooter game Outriders has recently launched to overall praise for its gameplay, but with it came a plethora of server issues that outraged players and sent Metacritic scores plummeting. This is Square Enix’s second recent attempt at an online looter RPG, following the critical failure of Marvel’s Avengers. Fans had been anticipating the release of Outriders since the announcement trailer dropped in E3 2019, and now two years later players can finally get their hands on the full experience. The game is also available on Xbox Game Pass, boosting the title’s popularity and player base.
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Before its release, Square Enix released a demo version of Outriders on February 25, letting fans experience the opening chapter of the game as well as carry progress over to the full game when it dropped. This move let countless people try the game for themselves and give their thoughts about the experience. Overall opinions classified the game as “mixed” on Steam due to criticism for the demo’s countless bugs and errors, which plagued the majority of players. Fans have also been verbal since the demo’s launch about their criticisms of Square’s decision to make the game an always-online experience.
Fans have seen constant server issues and game-breaking bugs throughout the game’s demo, and it seems that many of these issues have persisted, if not worsened, following the launch of the full game. At its current state, the game is completely unplayable for the vast majority of players, quickly disconnecting them from the experience if they manage to connect at all in the first place, and this has driven players to bombard the game with negative reviews on sites such as Metacritic. This issue is made worse by the game’s always-online nature, forcing players to connect to the broken servers even if they want to play the game by themselves. According to the official Outriders Twitter page, maintenance is still being done to address the server issues plaguing the game since release, but seeing as this is still happening two days after the release date, players are not happy.
Users are taking to the internet with their concerns about the game’s unplayability, with notable critics such as James Stephanie Sterling calling out the game’s problems over Twitter. With Metacritic user reviews opening up today, the game’s scores are starting to trickle into the system. The PS4 version’s score currently sits at a devastating 3.3 at the time of writing this article. Alongside this, Steam’s user review score joins the demo at a “mixed” response, with only 54% of players giving the game a positive review.
The launch of Outriders appears to be another nail in the coffin for always-online games. After numerous disastrous launches of recent games using this system, gamers are finally getting fed up. While Square Enix’s new attempt at an online RPG doesn’t implement similar games’ horrendous microtransaction systems, at least at the time of this writing, this marks yet another failed launch in the eyes of reviewers for the online looter genre, joining notable titles such as Anthem and Marvel’s Avengers in the line of controversial releases. While players are satisfied for the most part with the gameplay, this trend already leaves people to wonder, just how long will it be before this game meets the same fate as those before it?
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