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My.Games‘ first-person shooter online game Warface is celebrating its first anniversary on the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One today, and the Russian company said it has 13 million players on the consoles so far.
That’s a solid addition to the Warface audience, which now numbers more than 80 million registered players. Made by Crytek Kiev, Warface first debuted as a free-to-play military combat game in 2013. Earlier this year, a team of developers from Crytek Kiev left to form Blackwood Games, which is now in charge of development for the Warface franchise.
I spoke with Ivan Pabiarzhyn, Warface franchise lead at My.Games; and Elena Grigoryan, marketing director of My.Games, about the latest on Warface. In the future, don’t be surprised to see a mobile version of Warface on iOS and Android.
Here’s an edited transcript of our interview.
Ivan Pabiarzhyn: It’s been a year since Warface launched on PS4 and Xbox One. We’re amazed by the success of the project in this new market for our team. In the first three months, we acquired around 5 million [players], and we’re still growing. At present it’s about 13 million people. We’ve experienced a lot of interesting things about the console audience, about what they want from a first-person shooter. It’s been a very valuable experience for us.
GamesBeat: How has that fit into the larger overall userbase?
Pabiarzhyn: The players coming to console were almost all new to us. They’d never played Warface on PC before. That’s been a big benefit to the franchise by itself. Talking about the total players, our player base for the franchise as a whole is around 80 million people overall, all over the globe. Console has become a way to acquire a new audience for our products. It speaks well for the community overall.
GamesBeat: How do people play? Is it on their own platforms, or do you have crossplay between console and PC?
Pabiarzhyn: Currently we don’t have crossplay, but we’ve already had some communication with the teams at PlayStation and Xbox. They’ve provided us with documentation and relationships around cross play. Next year we plan to support cross play across both consoles, across Xbox and PlayStation.
How the consoles differ
GamesBeat: As far as the different characteristics of the players on the platforms, what do you notice about the differences between PS4 and Xbox One and PC?
Pabiarzhyn: There are some differences. But our game was released in 2013 on PC, originally. We have very well-optimized system performance in the game client. It runs very well on both PlayStation and Xbox One, on the basic versions and the pro versions as well. We don’t think it has affected the experience of the player base. The gameplay is very smooth.
Talking about the console markets, the behavior between the two platforms is the same. If you compare console to PC, there are some small differences in user behavior. For example, on PC, more players — around 60 percent — prefer to play [player-vs.-player] matches. On console it’s the other way around. The players tend to prefer to play [player-vs.-environment]. The percentage is about 60 percent PvE and 40 percent PvP.
GamesBeat: Geographically, is there a considerable spread? I remember that Warface on PC was very strong in eastern Europe.
Pabiarzhyn: The console market has brought a lot of people from the United States. Around 40 percent of our console players are from the U.S., and we’re very pleased by that metric.
GamesBeat: What’s the most interesting data you’ve discovered from the first year of the console game?
Pabiarzhyn: Many players are focusing on the classic modes in PvP — team deathmatch, free-for-all, and storm, the objective-based mode, which is a very popular mode around the globe by itself. What’s interesting for us, though, is that many players on console are preferring to play the storyline mode, special operations. That’s been a big part of attracting a new user base over the years, and it’s also helped bring back players who’ve left the game for one reason or another. Players who’ve been gone from the game for 30 days or more, when we provide new content month by month in that mode, it’s been a good way of making the game more interesting and bringing them back each month.
GamesBeat: Do you notice, as far as monetization goes, whether any one of the platforms has done particularly well for you?
Pabiarzhyn: We can’t distinguish differences between platforms around the monetization. Everything seems very similar.