Payday 3 has underperformed for Starbreeze

Payday 3 has underperformed for Starbreeze

Swedish games firm Starbreeze has said that Payday 3 has not met its expectations.

In a release to investors, CEO Tobias Sjögren said that the game had not performed as well as it would have hoped for. It appears that Payday 3 hasn't sold as much as Starbreeze would like, nor has it kept an active playerbase.

Sjögren pointed to numerous instances of games launching with a less-than-stellar performance but turning it around in the long term.

"Our biggest focus and absolute priority, both during and after the quarter, are the efforts needed to ensure that the game lives up to expectations," he said.

"We are working closely with our co-publishing partner Plaion to identify the changes that we will implement, in both the short- and long-term, that add the most value to the gaming experience. The Payday team will in February announce the changes and improvements that are prioritised for implementation.

"There are many examples from the game industry, where a problematic initial time on the market is turned into long-term success. There is no simple recipe available, but a common thread from the positive examples is to take players’ criticism to heart, dare to support your game and keeping an open and honest dialogue with your stakeholders. That is exactly what we are now doing with Payday 3. Few companies are blessed with a brand as strong as Payday. At a time when our most recent game is lagging, Payday 2 has fared slightly better than expected financially and with more than 400,000 active players in single months during the quarter. It shows the strength of the brand, and our potential to convert these to Payday 3 as we deliver on our commitments."

Sjögren continued, saying that the long term goal was to diversify Starbreeze's output.

"We will do this by developing games on our own IPs, on licensed IPs and as publisher for other studios’ games. In December, we were able to reveal that our next major internal project, Baxter, will be based on Dungeons & Dragons® – the world’s premiere role-playing game. Within our third-party publishing, Roboquest 1.0 was successfully launched with positive impact on both net sales and earnings. We now have more than six million registered users in our portal, Starbreeze Nebula."

PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.