Did Bend Studio Learn Nothing From Suicide Squad’s Utter Failure?

Why do companies overlook their brilliant single-players just to go live service?

Story Highlights

  • After the beautiful Days Gone, Bend Studio is now going for a much-hated live service game.
  • Suicide Squad: KTJL should’ve been lesson enough that picking live service over single-player is foolish.
  • Live service has ruined gaming, and no matter what it can never beat genuine and creative games.

Back in the day, when I purchased a game, I knew full well what I was getting. A complete game with a ton of content, all at no extra cost. Now, gaming has become a lot more of a business than it ever was. Especially with the blatantly predatory concept of live services

Even if you pay for a game, you only get a small portion of the cake and have to pay a ton of money for more servings. To top it all off, you can bypass anything with money, and if you aren’t spending to win, you’re automatically a loser.

There are good live services out there, sure, but in general, the concept has been misused a little too much to be called fair at this point. Yet, the industry continues to think it’s the future, the latest being Bend Studio.

YouTube video

If You Love Days Gone And Hate Live Service, I Have Horrible News For You

I’m sure you’ve at least heard of Days Gone if you haven’t played it already. When it was first revealed, I found the concept pretty interesting. A post-apocalyptic open world with hordes of zombies on your tail, as you dispatch them en masse, who doesn’t love a good old-fashioned zombie apocalypse? Although its rating was comparatively mild, I felt that it was a highly underrated PS exclusive.

It had its shortcomings, true, but it was an enjoyable single-player game with a heartwarming story. Despite the weaker score, it was commercially very successful, both on PS4 and as a PC port. As such, it has a strong fan following, and if you’re one of those fans, I’m afraid I come bearing terrible news. The Days Gone developer Bend Studio has recently posted a job listing, which implies a shift towards a live service game.

While we still don’t know if it’s a Days Gone-like live service, the odds are still there, and I genuinely hate this. Even if it isn’t Days Gone 2, why go live service in the first place? Days Gone was a perfectly fine single-player game that did quite well in terms of sales. Why on earth would you betray the entire fan base and go for a live service project of all things?

Instead of a beautiful, zombie-killing single-player game, we're getting more live service. Why Bend Studios?
Instead of a beautiful, zombie-killing single-player game, we’re getting more live service. Bend Studio, why?

Was Suicide Squad Not Lesson Enough?

I honestly don’t understand why are developers so adamant about pushing out live services. In this misguided crusade, even single-player games are being victimized. Established franchises are ditching their tried and tested formula to go and adopt this greedy tactic, hoping it’ll somehow earn them more than a deservingly earned reputation will.

What is an example of this point? Why of course, it’s Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League. I think it goes without saying just how impressive the Batman Arkham series is. It’s a benchmark for superhero games and one of if not the best in the genre. Rocksteady established this series from the ground up and it had an extremely loyal following. 

To me, Arkham Knight is the best of the series. Best gameplay, suits, graphics, details, atmosphere. Also it has Photo Mode. I love driving the Batmobile around. Having the ones from the movies is a dream come true. The game has flaws, but the good outweighs the bad. Super proud of this screenshot.
byu/Daredevil731 inBatmanArkham

However, WB’s ridiculous notion of turning everything into a live service intervened and took an established single-player franchise to a boring and horrible live service, which was Suicide Squad. And how did that turn out for it? Suicide Squad was a massive disappointment, dragged Rocksteady’s name through the mud, and earned the wrath of practically anyone with an attachment to the Arkham series. 

I still can't believe this mess is from the Arkham series devs
I still can’t believe this mess is from the Arkham series devs

If anything, this should be a lesson for anyone attempting to go the live service route instead of sticking to their tried and tested formula. But it seems Bend Studio and Sony learned nothing.

Suicide Squad: Killed by Live Service
byu/durranifahad ingaming

The Hate For Live Service Is At Its Peak

But do you know the worst thing? WB itself didn’t learn anything from this massive failure. It’s still set on the live service craze, ready to ruin everything under its flag with the same live service mess I’ve come to despise. Does Bend Studio want the same?

Because of its utterly ridiculous thought process, even last year’s massive success Hogwarts Legacy is now in troubled waters. There’s a solid chance Hogwarts Legacy 2 will be a live service game, and there’s nothing more horrifying than seeing things I begin to like turn into stuff I hate the most.

I won't put it past WB to turn Hogwarts Legacy into a soulless live service, it's truly a nightmare
I won’t put it past WB to turn Hogwarts Legacy into a soulless live service, it’s truly a nightmare

Help me understand here, what is the end goal of all this live service craze? Do companies aim to earn loads of money from this system and its mechanics? How exactly will they earn even a dime if the world hates this concept more than anything? When people are so sick of game companies blatantly scamming them for some more money, the only fate of live services is to crash and burn, not swim in cash.

“live service games”
byu/proviking6000 inmemes

There’s a very good example of this, and it’s not even old. Look at Dragon’s Dogma 2’s release. One of the most anticipated releases of the year was intensely bashed on launch. Why? Simply because it added microtransactions. The interesting thing is, they weren’t even microtransactions, just one-time purchases Capcom has been doing for years now.

They aren’t even mandatory, and as such, never bothered people. But now, even the sight of purchase-like options caused people to rage. What does that tell you? People’s tolerance for this predatory concept is practically non-existent now. Bend Studio needs to reconsider.

Live Services Can Never Replace Single-Player Games

My purpose in discussing all this was to point out that no matter what happens, predatory live service games can never beat single-player games in a million years. Going from an established single-player franchise that people adore to a live service concept, the hate for which has never been higher would be pretty much a career suicide.

I’m sick of “games as a service.”
byu/Chaser_Swaggotry ingaming

WB did it with the Arkham series, and you can see the result pretty clearly. Dragon’s Dogma 2 barely added one-time purchases, and it was cursed to hell, despite it being a fabulous game overall. And Days Gone is a creative and underrated adventure many people have come to adore. Bend Studio should stick to a proper sequel rather than go after a live service that’s bound to be hated.

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Hanzala is a dedicated writer who expresses his views as opinion pieces at eXputer. He's always been fascinated by gaming and has been an avid consumer of many different genres for over a decade. His passion for games has him eager to encounter the latest RPGs and actively look for new Soulslike to challenge. He puts forth his experience and knowledge of gaming into captivating opinion pieces.

Experience: 8+ months || Education: Bachelors in Chemistry.

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