The other day, while checking my social media, I came across a lot of users expressing their disappointment over an issue that didn’t surprise me, but definitely saddened me. The latest game in the Prince of Persia series, which is known for its excellence, was not selling as well as expected. In fact, it was nowhere near the sales figures of a new game called Palworld, which had sold over 10 million copies since its mid-January release.
It might seem inappropriate to compare these two games, as they cater to different audiences and are quite different from each other. However, they were released at around the same time, and the comparison sheds light on a concerning reality. Prince of Persia represents a highly esteemed and long-standing game series, known for its impressive metroidvania gameplay. On the other hand, Palworld is a survival game with Pokémon-inspired elements, still in the early access phase.
One month ago, if I had to bet on which game would perform better, I would have chosen Prince of Persia. The fact that I was proven wrong is troubling. It’s possible that my age is affecting my preference for traditional games, but it’s evident that many people are captivated by Palworld, with a staggering 2 million daily players on Steam.
It’s easy to assume that the lower sales of Prince of Persia might be due to its price or platform availability. However, it’s not just about these factors. Similar situations have occurred in the past with games like Rayman Legends. This might be attributed to the current trend where 2D games don’t attract as much attention unless they have the brand recognition of franchises like Super Mario.
The neglect of the Prince of Persia brand for over 14 years might have also contributed to its underwhelming sales. The majority of the game’s nostalgic fan base is likely over thirty years old, limiting its reach to a younger audience.
This trend sends a negative message to game developers. Many players, including myself, would love to see a new 2D Rayman game or another Prince of Persia title with the same level of excellence as the last installment. However, if sales don’t meet expectations, it becomes increasingly difficult for these games to materialize, especially when their figures pale in comparison to other launches.
In conclusion, this issue raises important questions. Are we sending the right message to developers? Why are well-crafted games not selling as much? Is there a solution to this problem? I’m interested in hearing your thoughts on this matter. Let’s discuss other similar cases and how you view the future of the gaming industry.