The Callisto Protocol Massively Underperforms, Has Reported Budget Of $160M
With a reported budget of approximately $160 million, it appears that The Callisto Protocol has commercially performed well below expectations.
According to sales estimates from securities firms, The Callisto Protocol has performed well below expectations, with the game’s budget of approximately $160 million cited as the primary reason. As a result, Daishin Securities, Samsung Securities, Shinhan Securities, KIWOOM Securities, Korea Investment & Securities, and Hyundai Motor Securities have termed it a failure, in turn lowering their target stock valuation for Krafton from the prior month.
In its stock report from earlier this month, Samsung Securities had expected cumulative sales of 5 million copies. However, given the current sales turnover, it will likely not be easy to hit cumulative sales of even 2 million copies until sometime this year. Similarly, Korea Investment & Securities had expected cumulative sales of 4 million copies, but has now lowered its estimate to 2.1 million.
According to Krafton’s business and quarterly reports, the company spent around $160 million, including $4.3 million in 2020, $62 million in 2021, and $91.7 million from January to September in 2022 on the development of The Callisto Protocol. This is excluding marketing costs, however, and the overall cost from game production to release is expected to be greater. It is expected that the company will specifically highlight The Callisto Protocol’s sales performance in its fourth quarter earnings report, which is scheduled for next month.
Multiple factors may have played a role in The Callisto Protocol’s lower than expected sales. For starters, the game had a lukewarm reception from game critics. In addition, the PC version was riddled with performance issues at launch. Also, it being a brand new IP from a newly established studio didn’t help its case.
Meanwhile, since its launch, developer Striking Distance Studios has been working to improve and refine The Callisto Protocol. The recent update 1.08 brought improvements to its performance as well as combat mechanics.