Arkane's open world vampire hunting FPS Redfall continues to struggle to find an audience on Steam even after a long-awaited update. Redfall was positioned to be one of Xbox's three big first-party releases in 2023 next to Bethesda Game Studios' Starfield and Turn 10's Forza Motorsport. While Starfield and Forza both largely enjoyed immensely successful launches, Redfall suffered harsh criticism for its plague of technical bugs, poor performance on Xbox Series X and S, and subpar design choices.
When developer Arkane announced that Redfall would be locked at 30 FPS on consoles, it promised a 60 FPS patch at some point after launch. Five months later 60 FPS headlined a major update for the game which brought many other sorely needed improvements to the vampire looter shooter, including improved performance on PC. Among the various bug fixes and accessibility improvements, Arkane also added proper stealth takedowns. Considering the studio's history with the Dishonored franchise and most recently Deathloop, the original omission of stealth takedowns was a head scratcher for many fans. Arkane also included input options suited for gamers who enjoy faster-paced FPS gameplay.
With all these changes for the better implemented into Redfall, one would think more gamers would give it another shot, but this doesn't seem like it's the case on Steam. On SteamDB, Redfall's page shows the playercount dip to just 36 players. Redfall has a 24-hour peak of 42 players and an all-time peak of just 6,124. It's important to note that these numbers only apply to Steam; this doesn't include playercounts on Xbox consoles or PC Game Pass.
It's possible Redfall is enjoying more players on Xbox Series X and S, as many console gamers have been holding out for the 60 FPS patch to finally hit. Additionally, PC gamers may have preferred to try Redfall via PC Game Pass at no cost rather than outright purchasing it on Steam. That said, if Redfall's post-update playercounts across console and PC Game Pass are similar to its lowly Steam numbers, there could be several factors as to why. Technical bugs and performance woes weren't the sole reason for Redfall's poor reception. The game's story, characters, cutscenes, loot system, and level design were also considered subpar. Even with many of the bugs patched up and performance improved, these fundamental design issues still remain.
One must also consider the sheer amount of stellar games that have released this year that many gamers are likely still busy with, like Diablo 4, Star Wars Jedi: Survivor, Armored Core 6, and Baldur's Gate 3 to name just a few. It's safe to say that this recent Redfall update may end up being its last major one, as Arkane has likely moved on internally to its next project. With Bethesda a part of Xbox, hopefully Arkane will be able to settle back into its wheelhouse of the stealth-based immersive sim for its next title.
Redfall is available now on PC and Xbox Series X|S.
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