The launch of Square Enix’s next-gen looter-shooter Outriders continues to experience issues, as developers have turned off cross-platform matchmaking in an effort to combat the problems. While platform cross-play seems to be the first priority, players are also struggling to get into matches regardless, with other reports of random crashes and game progress randomly resetting.
Following its launch on April 1, the RPG shooter’s servers were taken offline the following day, and while they appear to have stabilized in the days since, issues still appear to be very prevalent. The most concerning issue is a bug causing console users to remain stuck at 80% on the loading screen, with the game never booting up. Other issues include the HUD randomly disappearing, inventories disappearing, and accounts not signing in.
As the first large-scale shooter since Call of Duty Black Ops: Cold War to launch on PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, Square Enix will want to sort these problems quickly if it’s to retain the player base. The game’s initial first-week sales were somewhat lukewarm — with Outriders debuting at #6 on the UK game charts, and no US sales data to speak of yet — meaning the next few days and patches could be make-or-break for the game’s future.
This is not the first time a triple-A release has been fraught with trouble. Last year, CD Projekt Red’s Cyberpunk 2077 was released in a barely-playable state, with a recent patch still not bringing it anywhere near polished. Its subsequent removal from the PlayStation Store proves consumers and console developers are willing to take a harsh stance on games that can’t perform upon launch.
Square Enix will, of course, hope that Outriders doesn’t follow this trend. With a progress update from the developers due tomorrow, players will be wishing for a quick resolution to these issues. It does seem that Outriders’ problems are more manageable than Cyberpunk’s — when the servers are working, the game technically runs smoothly, and reviews have been positive — but the real test will be whether the upcoming patches solve problems that hotfixes suggested by developers haven’t been able to.
Luke Hinton is a freelance culture journalist living in Cardiff, Wales. He graduated from Cardiff University with a degree in Journalism, Media and Communications, and currently balances his freelancing work with postgraduate studies. He specialises in film, TV and entertainment writing.