Outriders will get a free demo – A practice that should return
Outriders is getting a free Demo
Square Enix is providing players the chance to experience Outriders before it releases. Rather than rely on pre-orders to try out the game, Square is publishing a free demo of the game on February 25th. All four classes will be playable in both single-player and co-op, and players can transfer their progress to the full game. The full game’s release date has been moved to April 1st, 2021, to give People Can Fly more time to fine-tune the game.
What is Outriders about?
Outriders is a third-person, space-faring looter shooter. As an Outrider, you are the last hope for humans trapped on Enoch. The Anomaly, an unknown force corrupting soldiers, runs amok while trying to colonize the planet. Those caught in the Anomaly awaken after a coma to discover they have magical powers. Unfortunately, many have lost most traces of their humanity, making them as dangerous as the beasts that lurk the planet.
Players will pick their class, work on their builds, and embark on story-focused missions with up to three other people. People Can Fly insists it’s not a live service like The Division or Destiny; With a player hub, NPCs, shops, and being called a ‘loot shooter,’ how can it not be? Well, the team claims they’re releasing a complete package from day one.
Speaking to IGN, People Can Fly said, “Story is so important for us.” The game director Bartosz Kmita even stated, “If we did a game-as-a-service, we would probably start chopping everything into sub-content.” Thank you!
People Can Fly will deliver old-school gaming philosophy
I’ll admit that this game didn’t fall under my radar. The first few times I saw it, it looked like a live-service game. After being burned by Destiny, Anthem, and Marvel’s Avengers, seeing a company refuse to incorporate games-as-a-service is refreshing. Kmita added that “We think that there are a lot of cool games on the market, and people maybe don’t have any more time to spend 300 hours to basically grind one item .”
Finally! It has been too long since we have received a complete multiplayer shooter with a compelling storyline that doesn’t cling to the games-as-a-service model. More surprising, though, is that the team will provide a demo for everyone to try out the game. No, not a beta test that requires you to pre-order the game.
Here’s what they had to say about it.
Video game demos need to become a permanent staple
The pre-order prerequisite for many games does not mean much when you can cancel a pre-order, yet a tried-and-true demo is nothing to scoff at. Betas have become marketing tools, nothing more. Demos are vital tools to convince people to buy the game. For players, getting to sample numerous video games before a purchase can keep us confident in the final product. I can’t be the only one who remembers ripping open a PlayStation magazine to get to the demo discs for PS1.
Offering a demo is a great move when delaying a game, as well. It lessens the sting, letting us test out the title before we must commit. A demo that represents the final build is critical, and companies can execute this in several ways:
The first is straight-forward: Demo a linear part of the final product.
A company can limit the portion of the game showed but give us a reason to replay it. Maybe it isn’t easy to explore every corner of a demo the first time, leading to discoveries the next time.
Create a prologue or a unique scenario for the demo but show off the many systems incorporated into the full game.
Hopefully, if Outriders is a success, video game companies will notice and follow their example. It’d be wonderful to stop receiving incomplete games for the sake of stretching its life over a few years. Unfortunately, the practice of cut content and battle passes results in much profit. Only time will tell if we’ll escape their stranglehold. Until that time, let’s enjoy a glimpse of how gaming used to be.
OUTRIDERS will release on PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and PC on April 1st, 2021.