Polish People’s Outriders Can Fly Didn’t Win For Themselves

May 5, 2022, 10:10 p.m.

author: Michał Clock “Maycuzai”

Polish studio People Can Fly’s financial report revealed that Outriders did not make enough money to cover Square Enix’s expenses related to its development and distribution. The company’s recent superhero productions have suffered a similar fate.

Some time ago, a Polish studio people can fly made its latest version available financial report. It contained a mention of the sales results of the developer’s latest work, Outriders. Last August, we reported that People Can Fly had not received any earnings data from the game’s publisher, Square Enix. They were very important for the developer, as they formed the basis for demanding royalties from the Japanese company.

The Outriders didn’t sell well

Now we found out why Square Enix delayed releasing this information. In the aforementioned financial report, we read:

The company is entitled to royalties upon obtaining certain revenues (specified in the contract) from the sale of the game, if these guarantee that the publisher recovers a predetermined level of expenses incurred within the production cycle , promotion and distribution of the game. The amount of royalties depends on the proceeds from the sale of the game.

Square Enix made no profit on the investment

The rest of the document informs us that Riders did not generate enough profit to cover Square Enix’s expenses related to the production and distribution of this title. Thus, the People Can Fly studio did not receive any royalties.

The Group has not received any royalties from the publisher for the period up to December 31, 2021, which means that at the closing date, the net proceeds from the sale of the game Riders were insufficient to recover the costs and expenses incurred by the publisher in creating, distributing and promoting the title.

This was confirmed in the fourth quarter 2021 royalties statement received by the group from the publisher. It is not certain that the net proceeds from the sale Riders in future periods will be sufficient for the publisher to recover the costs incurred and to pay royalties to the group.

Copyright transferred

It is to highlight that trademark rights Riders have been fully transferred to the publisher games, or Square Enix:

As part of the development and publishing agreement, the company transferred its existing and future intellectual property rights (copyrights) to the game to the publisher. Ridersas well as all DLCs, sequels and additional products related to the game. The company has also waived its moral rights in favor of the publisher.

Square Enix Issues

Riders it’s not the only recently released Square Enix production that didn’t live up to the company’s expectations. Yesterday it turned out that the Marvel’s Avengers and Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy games brought the publishers $200 million loss. No wonder the Japanese company sold its Western studios to the Embracer group.

Even more interestingly, last May Square Enix bragged that Riders in the first month after its premiere, it attracted 3.5 million unique players in front of its screens. Square Enix CEO Yosuke Matsuda claimed at the time that the game got off to a very good start.

New People Can Fly games in 2024

The studio is currently working on two new unannounced games: Gemini Project for Square Enix and The Dagger Project for Take-Two Interactive. The mentioned financial report mentions them:

At the end of 2021, the status of work on games (Gemini Project and Project dagger) can be estimated as relatively early. They should appear before the end of 2024 – without giving exact dates.

What about delays?

Also worth mentioning is this information:

The decision on the final date and form of release of the game remains at the sole discretion of the publisher, the company cannot exclude the risk that for these two games the planned release date will also be postponed.

Pushing the release date to 2025 would delay the payment of any royalties to the group, and could also damage its image and the interest of players in the games it creates.

people can fly

This studio is best known for the game Bulletstorm released in 2011, which you will learn more about in this article. In addition to creating the two aforementioned new games, the developer is constantly focused on development Riders – The first big one will debut on June 30 addition at the game called World killer.

Play Outriders with Game Pass, which you can buy here


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