Glen Schofield (former director of Dead Space at Visceral Games) took a lot of money to make this game happen. Can The Callisto Protocol at least break even on its costs so Striking Distance Studios won’t lose?
K-Odyssey, a Korean news site, reported that Krafton, the publisher of the game, expected to sell at least 5 million copies. Still, since The Callisto Protocol is not reaching the set targets, the publisher is not hoping for 2 million sales this year. The game has had problems from launch, with performance (stuttering) taking weeks to get right, Denuvo being added to the PC version again a few days from the game’s launch (if anywhere, this is where money could be saved and performance would improve), and many people mentioned in their reviews that the combat and mechanics were not the best.
For this reason, it is perhaps fair to say that the public expected a lot from The Callisto Protocol, but Schofield’s game was mainly disappointing in the end. Benji-Sales pointed out on Twitter that Krafton spent about 200 million South Korean won on the game over three years, equivalent to about $161 million, so the game would need to sell about 2 million copies at least to avoid being a financial failure for the publisher. It’s certainly not a tiny amount, but it does sound a bit high, given that it’s not a Call of Duty game (where Activision Blizzard can afford to throw a ton of money at it because it’s guaranteed to recoup its costs).
Krafton is now hoping to gain gamers’ trust (and money) by supporting The Callisto Protocol post-launch, but the company is not in a comfortable position to do so now. Getting sales expectations down from five million to two? Either they were overconfident in the game, or the smoke was more significant than the flame.