The Finals, a new free-to-play multiplayer shooter from the former Battlefield developers, is finally out and showing some great numbers on Steam. The only issue is mixed user reviews, but they have nothing to do with the game’s technical state or overall quality.

The Finals peaks at over 200k concurrent players on Steam: how it compares to other major launches of 2023

Released globally on December 8 for PC, Xbox Series X|S, and PlayStation 5, The Finals is an online arena shooter with a huge focus on environmental destruction. Players take on the roles of participants in a virtual combat show, competing against each other in teams of three.

At the moment of writing, The Finals has already peaked at 200,677 concurrent players (via SteamDB), and the player count continues to grow. For comparison, the game’s playtest beta had a peak of 267k CCU, so the full version has every chance to surpass this milestone over the weekend.

However, even the 200k peak makes The Finals the 6th game release of 2023 on Steam by that metric. It is now above titles like Resident Evil 4 (168k) and Remnant II (110k), but below Lethal Company (240k), Baldur’s Gate 3 (875k), and Hogwarts Legacy (879k).

Although the numbers are great, The Finals is the only free-to-play game in the top 10:

The only thing that could overshadow the successful launch of The Finals is its user score on Steam. It currently has a “Mixed” rating, with 66% of the 4,841 reviews being positive. Unlike the case with many other titles this year, players are not disappointed by bugs or poor optimization. Instead, most criticism is aimed at just one element — the studio’s decision to nerf movement speed for all classes.

“Everything feels extremely sluggish now, even while playing the Light class. It does not match with the tone of the game at all, it doesn’t even feel like the same game as the beta,” one user wrote.

Although many players complain about the new movement, this is something that can be quickly fixed. So it is interesting to see how the developers will react to the feedback.

As we detailed in our previous report about The Finals’ beta, it is a debut game by Swedish team Embark Studios. Among its founders is Patrick Söderlund, who previously worked DICE and EA on the Battlefield series. So the studio, which has vast experience in the genre, was able to fulfill its vision with the financial support of South Korean publisher Nexon (it acquired Embark Studios for $96 million in 2019).

Embark is now also working on Arc Raiders, a third-person shooter in the vein of Hunt: Showdown and Escape From Tarkov. Just like The Finals, it will follow the free-to-play monetization model.

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