Ark: Survival Evolved has some competition.
Funcom announced today that its open-world survival game Conan Exiles has already reached 320,000 copies sold after one week on Steam Early Access. The sales have helped the Norwegian game publisher recoup the costs of development. It also released the Conan Exiles Dev Kit today, which enables players to make mods. These custom bits could then become free content for other players that can increase their engagement.
Open-world survival games have become popular, with Ark: Survival Evolved becoming a hit on PC and consoles with long Early Access periods. Conan Exiles is on its way to being a legitimate competitor with Ark, which sold 1 million copies in its first month of Early Access.
Early Access enables developers to release a game while they’re still developing it, sometimes helping them fund the work. The game is in a state that others can play it, so the developer can quickly gather feedback and player data. You still pay a full price to get into the game early, but you’ll also get access to the final version.
“We are deeply humbled and very grateful for the initial success of Conan Exiles,” said Funcom chief executive officer Rui Casais in a press release sent to GamesBeat. “Funcom has gone through some challenging times in recent years and seeing the game we have poured so much time and effort into gain this amount of traction so quickly is very invigorating for everyone who works here. This is just the start of the Early Access adventure and we will do whatever it takes to make sure Conan Exiles turns into a fully-fledged game that has something to offer new and old fans of both Conan and survival games.”
The game is based on the Conan the Barbarian fantasy world created by author Robert E. Howard in a series of books and stories beginning in 1932, later appearing on the big screen in the 1982 Arnold Schwarzenegger film of the same name. The franchise has also spawned several video games, including 2008’s massively multiplayer online role-playing game Age of Conan (also from Funcom).