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Square Enix: Outriders made 'good start' thanks to Xbox Game Pass launch

Outriders publisher Square Enix has said the decision to make People Can Fly's looter shooter available through Xbox Game Pass at launch worked in its favor.

Outriders publisher Square Enix has said the decision to make People Can Fly's looter shooter available through Xbox Game Pass at launch worked in its favor. 

The title launched on April 1, 2021, and was made available to Xbox Game Pass subscribers on day one. Although Square has acknowledged there were "slight issues with bugs and the like on launch," it believes the franchise has "gotten off to a good start" thanks in no small part to its Xbox Game Pass debut. 

"We have been pleasantly surprised as the digital sales ratio for the title have been very high, and the number of active users has also beaten our expectations," said company president Yosuke Matsuda during an investor Q&A. "We believe that our decision to make Outriders available with Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass as soon as the title launched also worked in our favor (to build an install base for the game)." 

Outriders amassed 3.5 million unique players within one month of launch, with Square describing the title as its "next big franchise." It's unclear how many of those players have stuck around, but Square at least seems impressed by the game's performance at this early stage. 

Xbox Game Pass, which offers access to a range of first and third-party titles for a monthly fee, had over 18 million subscribers at the start of the year

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