Days Gone director says buy games at full price, otherwise don't complain if they never get sequels

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The lead director and writer for Days Gone has some hot takes to share with the internet. John Garvin, who has since left Bend Studio following the release of Days Gone, appeared on a YouTube interview with fellow PlayStation game dev David Jaffe, known for his work directing the original God of War. The two spent over four hours discussing the games industry, the current direction of PlayStation, and other topics, with one such moment of which focused on Garvin's thoughts regarding the sales performance of Days Gone, and why it likely will not be getting a sequel any time soon.

He began his commentary (2:42:00 in the video) with, "I do have an opinion on something that your audience may find of interest, and it might piss some of them off. If you love a game, buy it at [expletive] full price", in response to people in the live stream chat who were expressing their love for the game, especially after having tried it on PlayStation 5, as part of the PS+ Collection. Garvin continued, stating, "I can't tell you how many times I've seen gamers say 'yeah I got that on sale, I got it through PS+, whatever", with Jaffe countered his point by asking how players would know they'd like a game before playing it, and Garvin replied by saying, "You don't, but don't complain if a game doesn't get a sequel if it wasn't supported at launch".

That exchange quickly found its way to social media infamy, as Twitter users criticized Garvin for telling gamers to buy titles at full price at launch in an industry where Cyberpunk 2077 was pulled from storefronts due to critical issues on release. He added to the debate with the following, "So, you do you. If you don't like a game? If it's buggy? If you listen to reviewers' opinions? If you think games cost too much? More power to you. Just don't buy it on sale a year later, discover you love it, then wonder why a sequel never got made".

Days Gone, which was originally a PlayStation 4 exclusive, released in 2019 to moderate and negative reviews, with critics finding the gameplay generic and dated. GBAtemp also reviewed the game at launch, and our consensus was mostly in line with the at-the-time Metacritic average of 70. It also had a rocky first few days, as the game had lots of bugs, to the point of Days Gone being patched on a daily basis for over a week, as it faced audio issues, console crashes, autosave problems, and other random glitches.

Shortly after that part of the interview (2:42:32), Garvin brings up having faced piracy, and its negative impacts on projects he'd worked on in the past. Here, he mentioned, "we were doing Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror, we got so [expletive], because piracy was a thing, and Sony wasn't really caught up on what piracy was doing to sales", and "I was pissed about it then, I was like, this is money out of my pocket". He then ends the topic by claiming, "the uptick in engagement with the game isn't as important as, did you buy the game at full price? Because if you did, then that's supporting the developers directly".

Currently, Days Gone is on track for a Windows PC release next month, on May 18th. Has this interview impacted your thoughts on whether or not you'll be picking up the game--at full price--when it launches? And do you agree with Garvin's overall thoughts on supporting and buying games at launch, if only to support the developers?

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According to Wikipedia, the game sold pretty well despite have mixed reviews. The heck is the director talking about??

Sony probably won't approve a sequel because it didn't make *BANK* so the dev is mad at the buyer instead of Sony.

Plus he probably assumes people are going to pirate the game on PC (if/when cracked) and he's mad about that too.
 
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I've played most of Bend Studios games and I think this one is the worst. I was a fan of the Syphon Filter games especially the PSP/PS2 ones, and Resistance Retribution on PSP was solid. This was meh. In fact I beat the 5 main Syphon Filter games and Resistance but did not bother to beat this one.
 

Goku1992A

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Ehh most games nowadays aren't Day 1 worthy purchases if you consider almost 50% of the game is locked behind DLC.... Maybe PS2 and early PS3 games was worth Day 1 purchases because a paywall wasn't behind the game and you unlocked your characters normally instead of buying them.
 

RedBlueGreen

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Make a game worth $60 then. I'm getting sick of playing short, expensive games. I've probably played Deadly Premonition for longer than a lot of higher cost titles, and on sale for Switch it goes for like $6, and launched on the 360 for $20. I feel like quality free to play titles like Warframe have more value than a lot of $60 games.
This reminds me fof when Telltale died, people were like; "But their games were doing great
!" Yeah when did you buy them at full price? Almost everybody got it on sale.

He is right.
Maybe they should've made games that weren't basically episodic interactive movies. Deadly Premonition got a sequel last year and that launched 10 years ago for $20 and it didn't sell well at the time. But it got a cult following.
 
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RichardTheKing

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This dumbass don't know what a CULT FOLLOWING is. The Legend of Heroes/Kiseki series for example is only as popular as it is in the west because of two steps of Cult following - the first being to even get it released on the PSP to start due to huge hype, and the 2nd being people clamoring for it for a PC release which is what even helped secure Sky SC and beyond as they KNEW there was an actual desire for the game series at that point.

Kiseki may still be an underdog because it doesn't get the advertising/attention that other series get, but it's still a series that's thriving in the Non-AAA markets.

A Cult following is far more reliable than simply asking people to buy full price.
You could apply the same conditions to Persona 4 Golden. A lot of people became fans of the series because of Persona 5, and wanted to see what the previous game was like, even though it was stuck on the Vita. Atlus ported it to PC, and got massive sales from what was originally a PlayStation 2 game.
They could easily attempt a hat-trick by releasing P3FES on PC.

--------------------- MERGED ---------------------------

Oh yeah, then where is Minecraft 2 ? Minecraft barely got discounted since release.
I know you're joking, but there was indeed a "Minecraft 2.0" - an April Fool's joke release, from several years ago. Added stuff like stained glass and redstone blocks before they were in the actual game, surprisingly.
 

Taleweaver

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I'm kind of wondering... Is the guy not just assuming everyone wants sequels to beloved games in the first place?

Look at other media for a second : did the really great works for sequels? No. There's no 'football 2.0' being popular, no Bible 2 or 1985 books, citizen Kane didn't have a sequel, and so on. And where they did get sequels, they're either planned from the start (lord of the rings, for example) or are just not the same quality (matrix 2 and 3 come to mind).
In the board game world, there are some expansions and a few new releases of REALLY popular games, but that's about it. Fuck... Games are shunned of they're too similar to other board games.

But in AAA video game land? If it's not a remaster then it's a remake, and if it's not a sequel then it 'borrows' most mechanics from other popular games.
Sequels are fine when you've got more ideas than you could cram in the original (super mario galaxy 2,for example) or back when technology increased so fast that there's a clear difference thanks to better hardware. But nowadays the amount of franchising has grown beyond what should be reasonable.

In other words : I should send this guy's note to AAA studios :

'dear devs: if your majority of sales (in numbers) starts to come from discounted purchases, it's probably time to stop churning out sequels as the fan popularity is waning'
 
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Pipistrele

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Well if you're THAT poor, then videogames shouldn't be your main priority
Poverty is relative, especially when things like region and price policies come into play - it's entirely possible to have your needs covered, but videogames still being prohibitively expensive in your country (Brazil and Russia for example).

Besides, poorer people still deserve to enjoy videogames and engage in сommunity, and dismissing them as "well, they shouldn't prioritize vidjagames" (rather than making vidjagames more accessible) is kind of eh .з.
 
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Edgarska

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From a dev pov, remember that you spend months if not years developing a game/engine, while I think the issues with bugs and quality is more of the console manufacturer pushing for sales, and giving strict deadlines to have a "functional" product/service


if you like a game support it, but don't be a hypocrite and two faced when there's problems and you never supported, played, purchased it, and gave it an unbiased chance

No, deciding not to buy a game that was never fixed by the developers is not the consumer's problem, that's stupid.
It is always on the publisher to decide if the game gets released in a broken state, you don't ask for people to buy your broken game in the hopes that it eventually gets fixed, you release a finished game.

Someone complaining that a game is broken is completely valid even if they didn't buy it, the game is still as broken whether they bought it or not.

And since I know it will come up, no, budget and publishing expenses are not something the consumer has to take into consideration either, we are buying a product with the expectation that it will work.
 
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ClancyDaEnlightened

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Poverty is relative, especially when things like region and price policies come into play - it's entirely possible to have your needs covered, but videogames still being prohibitively expensive in your country (Brazil and Russia for example).

Besides, poorer people still deserve to enjoy videogames and engage in сommunity, and dismissing them as "well, they shouldn't prioritize vidjagames" (rather than making vidjagames more accessible) is kind of eh .з.

It's a for profit business, just like anything else, not a charity, also import and shipping costs are different, for physical items

No, deciding not to buy a game that was never fixed by the developers is not the consumer's problem, that's stupid.
It is always on the publisher to decide if the game gets released in a broken state, you don't ask for people to buy your broken game in the hopes that it eventually gets fixed, you release a finished game.

Someone complaining that a game is broken is completely valid even if they didn't buy it, the game is still as broken whether they bought it or not.

And since I know it will come up, no, budget and publishing expenses are not something the consumer has to take into consideration either, we are buying a product with the expectation that it will work.

You also have to account for the parent company (console manufacturer), for more of the bugs and issues, for example, Sony and M$ rushing development so they can push sales on consoles that they already sell to you at a loss so you can afford it, so they need software and services available to recoup back that cost, they have the ultimate say whether the game runs/gets released and digitally signed,

They don't care if a game has bugs or glitches, if it functions then the dev can release patches

It's not always the devs fault, external circumstance
 
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To be fair, when I go to Private Dining and start my fancy dinner with my date, there has never been a time when the Chef comes up to me and tries to explain their way out of why my Imported Dinner isn't as good as what was promoted and what I paid for.

Now that's an expensive example which has relevance with AAA Games, who sell themselves as the cream of the crop.

I do not give a flying F what the Developer's problems are because they also do not care for me trying to explain my way out of paying less than the asking price at the Checkout Counter.

We all have problems.
Deal.
 

ClancyDaEnlightened

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To be fair, when I go to Private Dining and start my fancy dinner with my date, there has never been a time when the Chef comes up to me and tries to explain their way out of why my Imported Dinner isn't as good as what was promoted and what I paid for.

Now that's an expensive example which has relevance with AAA Games, who sell themselves as the cream of the crop.

I do not give a flying F what the Developer's problems are because they also do not care for me trying to explain my way out of paying less than the asking price at the Checkout Counter.

We all have problems.
Deal.

Developing an aaa game can't be done in 20 minutes
 
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Developing an aaa game can't be done in 20 minutes

Neither can my Private Dinner, which has a host of Logistical tasks associated with the Time of Year, Import Rates, International Relations and the Chef who is a Foreign National.

Excuses are just that.

When one claims to be the Best, excuses are the last thing anyone wants to hear.
From Sports Cars, Private Dining, Athletes and, god forbid, AAA Titles.
 
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ClancyDaEnlightened

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Neither can my Private Dinner, which has a host of Logistical tasks associated with the Time of Year, Import Rates, International Relations and the Chef who is a Foreign National.

Excuses are just that.

When one claims to be the Best, excuses are the last thing anyone wants to hear.
From Sports Cars, Private Dining, Athletes and, god forbid, AAA Titles.


Food sells, haven't met someone who doesn't eat
 
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