Developer Frictional Games has revealed that its science-fiction survival-horror game, SOMA, has been downloaded over 650,000 times in the little over two years it has been on the market.
Released back on September 22, 2015 for PC, Mac, Linux, and PlayStation 4, SOMA had notably been downloaded 400,000 times the same time last year, meaning it has racked up 200,000 more downloads in the past year, a figure Frictional Games describes as “a very good result.”
It’s important to note that this figure does not represent sales. As Frictional Games points out in its blogpost, sales are not a straightforward thing to figure out. For instance, SOMA was part of the Humble Monthly Bundle, which means that everyone subscribing to the service was able to download a copy of the game, and thus these don’t really count as “sales.”
Further, not all sales are created equal: some are made at full price, others on a hefty discount. Thus, it’s always wise to avoid making any conclusions based on download figures.
According to Frictional Games, SOMA has been a hit for the Swedish studio, and has provided money that has easily been able to sustain the developer for the time it needs to complete its next project. However, if SOMA had been a flop, the developer would be in a difficult situation, and that is why it is in the process of transitioning into a two project studio, with a goal to release a game every two years. This will mean less reliance on a single release, which in turn will allow it to take greater risks going forward, according to the developer.
Of the two projects Frictional Games currently has going, one is in full production with about 80 percent of the staff (which is 16 people big) working on it. The focus of most of this year has been creating the “first few maps of the game” in order to create a solid vertical slice based on experiments made last year.
Frictional Games doesn’t offer up any details on the project, other than that it will be “horrific in nature,” and will likely get an announcement sometime during the first six months of 2018.
As for the other project, it is “going well,” but has been delayed a bit due to new tech taking longer than anticipated to develop. The upside of this has been that the game has had more time in pre-production than any of Frictional Games’ previous titles, which has been incredibly valuable, as the project is tackling a variety of “difficult” things.
Details on this project are also scarce, but Frictional Games does say it “will be less about direct, visceral horror, and more about the player gaining an understanding of different concepts.” Release is described as being “quite far off,” and thus the developer warns that no concrete details will be shared anytime in the near future.
In other related news, Frictional Games’ Amnesia: Collection was revealed today to be a part of PlayStations Plus’ line-up of free games for the month of October.