Devolver Digital Skipped Xbox Game Pass/PS Plus Deals, Led To Lower Subscription Revenues
Devolver Digital passed up on Xbox Game Pass and PS Plus deals, resulting in lower subscription revenues, based on the latest information.
In its unaudited results for the six months ended 30 June 2023, Devolver Digital has stated that it had declined subscription deal proposals, presumably from Xbox Game Pass and PS Plus, that undervalued the value and revenue opportunities for its titles in 2023 and 2024, leading to lower subscription revenues.
The publisher also mentioned that, as announced in the trading update on August 3, 2023, high potential titles have been delayed to 2024 to ensure that they have the time, effort and support to succeed. As a result, the first half of 2023 was an unusually quiet release period with only 4 new titles from Devolver Digital, of which only one was a major title, Terra Nil. In comparison, the first half of 2022 saw the release of 7 title from the publisher. Meanwhile, Devolver Digital’s back catalogue revenues were up 10%, accounting for 87% of total revenues, reflecting the lower new title contribution and the continued strong performance of Cult of the Lamb.
Sony Interactive Entertainment President, Jim Ryan, had recently shared an interesting perspective on the catalog-based subscription model. According to him, all publishers unanimously dislike Xbox Game Pass because it is value destructive, not only on an individual title-basis, but also on an industry level. He further suggested that PS Plus is a meaningful subscription service in comparison.
The aforementioned Cult of the Lamb is a roguelike game developed by Massive Monster and published by Devolver Digital. It was released on August 11, 2022, for macOS, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Windows, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S. The game’s narrative revolves around a lamb saved from death by a god-like figure called “The One Who Waits.” To repay this debt, players must establish a loyal following in the deity’s name. Players take on the role of the lamb and are tasked with creating a cult to satisfy the enigmatic deity. They embark on roguelike-style missions across five randomly generated regions, defeating enemies and expanding their following.