Phil Spencer Apologizes for Disappointing Fans With Redfall, Expected Better Reviews

During a recent interview with Kinda Funny Games, Xbox Games Studios CEO and Head of Gaming at Microsoft Phil Spencer apologized for the launch and current state of Redfall, the studio’s latest first party game which has had several reported technical issues and a below average rating on Metacritic. Spencer claimed that developer Arkane Austin will work on improving the game including its upcoming 60fps update, and that delaying the game any further would not have solved its major issues.

Regarding the game’s performance and reviews, Spencer said:

“There’s nothing that’s more difficult for me than disappointing the Xbox community. I’ve been a part of it for a long time. I obviously work on Xbox, I’m head of the business, I have a lot of friends and get a lot of feedback, and just to kind of watch the community lose confidence, be disappointed, I’m disappointed, I’m upset with myself.

We do mock reviews for every game that we launch, and this is double digits lower than where we thought we would be with this game through [those]. That’s one of the disappointing things: we would never strive to launch a game that we thought was going to review in the low 60s – it’s not part of our goals.

If you look at our review scores over the past year – and this is not a defence at all – I think the teams have done a much better job in upping the level of quality of the games that we’ve shipped… and this game was significantly below our internal metrics compared to where it actually reviewed. But that’s not on anybody but us – we have to own that.”

“Learning about the quality – and I know there are bugs, I’ve seen them in Redfall – when I look at the crash rates with the game, because we get all the telemetry for everything – it’s not out of proportion for a game that has just launched, it’s kind of in the pocket of what we’d expect. That’s not to deny any of the animation, streaming of texture bugs, or AI bugs – we will go and work on those.

But when I look at the review scores of this game it’s [about] did we have enough creative differentiation in our core idea and did we realise that creative ambition? I’m a huge supporter of Arkane Austin: their track record is awesome, I love a lot of the great games that they’ve built. This is one where the team didn’t hit their own internal goals.”

“In terms of our commitment to the game… absolutely, the team at Arkane is taking the near-term feedback. We’re still working on the 60fps update. We have a good timeline for that… and we’re going to continue to work [on] the game. We’ve shown a commitment to games like Sea of Thieves and [Obsidian‘s] Grounded, to continue to go and build games.”

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