PlayStation Plus release "devastating" for Oddworld Soulstorm

By Kes Eylers-Stephenson,
In April 2021, the PlayStation Plus monthly games offered Oddworld SoulStorm on its day of release. However, creator Lorne Lanning has now said that its inclusion was "devastating for sales."

Oddworld: Soulstorm

Lorne Lanning, speaking on the Xbox Expansion Pass podcast (as reported and transcribed by VGC), has stated that the Oddworld Inhabitants team thought that the game "might sell 50,000 units at launch, maybe 100,000 units. It was pretty small numbers because there wasn’t going to be a lot of PS5s.”

A payment from Sony for the PlayStation Plus inclusion was "to get the project done," Lanning states. "We were hitting a number of legacy technical debt issues and talent issues and you know, the game industry is emerging fast, huge companies are paying fortunes.” With slight concern, Lanning agreed to include the game in January 2021 as the PS5 game. "We thought we did a pretty good deal," stated Lanning.

Oddworld Soulstorm

“Because it slipped to April, we had the highest downloaded game on PS5 and it was, I think, approaching… close to four million units or something like that for free because they were all subscriptions. So for us, it was devastating." The developer cannot confirm the intimate details of the deal due to NDAs.

“However, this does underline the difficulty of making a decision about inclusion at launch for games content subscription services,” continued Lanning. Indeed, for games like Rocket League and Fall Guys, PlayStation Plus would prove to be the making of immensely popular and successful titles. Lanning, though, believes that Oddworld Soulstorm's inclusion on PlayStation Plus caused missed profits.

What do you think of Lanning's statements here? Do they reflect a majority of games, or just one-offs if you had to guess? Let us know in the comments!
Kes Eylers-Stephenson
Written by Kes Eylers-Stephenson
Associate Editor Kes is our resident expert in PlayStation news. He writes about upcoming exclusives like The Last of Us and God of War, PS Plus and PS Studios news, and his favourite games — The Witcher 3, Assassin’s Creed, and The Outer Wilds — before an evening swim.