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xDefiant reportedly netted 1 million players within 2.5 hours of launch

Despite its allegedly troubled development, Ubisoft's free-to-play shooter has become its fastest game launch to hit the 1 million player mark.

Justin Carter, Contributing Editor

May 23, 2024

1 Min Read
A soldier in Ubisoft's xDefiant.
Image via Ubisoft.

Ubisoft's troubled, repeatedly-delayed shooter xDefiant has launched and is said to be doing quite well for itself.

Per Insider Gaming, the free-to-play shooter saw 1 million unique players just 2.5 hours after it launched on Tuesday, May 21. If true, it marks the fastest Ubisoft game to hit that milestone.

At time of writing, it's said the game reached 3 million players and now has 300,000 concurrent players on PC (via Ubisoft Connect), Xbox Series X|S, and PlayStation 5.

Ubisoft's yet to release any other hard numbers at time of writing. Big free-to-play games tend to launch very strongly, and it helps there's no huge shooter competition at the moment, since Call of Duty: Black Ops 6 isn't coming for another four or five months.

Like most big shooters, xDefiant had a rough launch day that saw players unable to find a match or leave the main menu. Insider claims that during that period, there were half a million players logged in.

xDefiant's long, arduous path from development to release

The path to xDefiant has been eventful, particularly since it was meant to come out last year, and delayed twice, once indefinitely.

Back in March, a report alleged the shooter's development was greatly hampered by executives and directors exhibiting toxic behavior. Things were allegedly so bad it added extra time on the game's already troubled development cycle.

Employees told Insider Gaming at the time those executives "do what they please without any repercussions." Several hoped the game would finally come out so they could move on to another project away from the reported troublemakers.

About the Author(s)

Justin Carter

Contributing Editor, GameDeveloper.com

A Kansas City, MO native, Justin Carter has written for numerous sites including IGN, Polygon, and SyFy Wire. In addition to Game Developer, his writing can be found at io9 over on Gizmodo. Don't ask him about how much gum he's had, because the answer will be more than he's willing to admit.

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