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Granblue Fantasy: Versus crosses 500,000 copies sold but that could slow to a crawl if Cygames doesn't change a few things

Good enough to earn it a potential third season of DLC it seems

Posted by Dakota 'DarkHorse' Hills • June 27, 2021 at 2:15 p.m. PDT • Comments: 20

It may feel like a lot longer since Granblue Fantasy: Versus first released, but we've been playing the game for like 16 months at this point and seems to be chugging along as a success for its creators.

Alongside the reveal of Seox, Cygames announced this weekend that Granblue Fantasy: Versus has now crossed 500,000 copies shipped / sold worldwide with a new celebratory piece of art, which is fairly impressive for a brand new series in the realm of fighting games although it comes with some caveats and potential pitfalls.

Less than a decade ago, these sales figures would mark a huge win coming out of a studio like Arc System Works, but the industry and developers have changed quite a bit in these past few years, which makes it more difficult to determine just how big of a success the game is now, however.

While it's difficult to how successful GBVS is exactly, Cygames does appear to certainly view it as one considering they teased that more DLC characters are coming following the end of Season 2 next month, and they've continued to support it with larger events like RAGE in Japan.

Where one of the caveats comes in for the sales stems not from the numbers themselves but from how slowly they've gone up since last year.

Back in March, Cygames revealed Granblue Versus sold 200,000 copies in Japan alone followed by updating that total for worldwide in April at 350,000 units.

The last sales update we received came back in November 2020 when the mobile RPG spin-off crossed 450,000 copies, which means GBVS only sold around 50,000 more in the six or seven months since.

That's a dip by half of what it pushed in the previous timeframe, which is to be expected given that it's a title moving further and further away from its release window

Such a drop isn't terrible by any stretch though fans of the game likely were hoping to see some stronger numbers to keep Granblue going and healthy.

One of the largest deterrents that seems to be keeping interested, prospective new players from picking up GBVS we've noticed in more recent months is the utter lack of discounts and bundles for the fighter, especially on digital marketplaces like Steam.

Typically once a fighting game has been available already for a year or so, a new bundled version is released with the existing DLC and / or the base game and original Deluxe Edition are discounted to try and entice new players who didn't pick it up upon release, but that's not the case here.

It's even more glaring right now with the Steam Summer Sale currently ongoing, and Granblue is pretty much the only modern fighting game that isn't discounted at all except for new releases like Guilty Gear Strive.

Someone could pick up the entirety of Dragon Ball FighterZ (including all three seasons of DLC) for like $40 or drop $60 to just receive the base version of Granblue Versus. The current price to pick up GBVS and both of its season passes sits at $115 on Steam.

Cygames' apparent reluctance to give discounts may come from their history as a mobile game developer, but it's going to make GBVS a harder and harder sell as time continues to progress.

Not only does it have to compete with its contemporaries like Dragon Ball FighterZ, but the next generation of fighting games are starting to appear now with the release of Guilty Gear Strive and many more like The King of Fighters 15 coming up on the horizon.

To stand pretty much any chance of growing its dedicated playerbase, Cygames needs to provide new ones easier and cheaper ways to actually jump in, especially when there's likely a third season pass on the way.

I'm not saying all of this as someone who dislikes the game either. Granblue Versus is one of my favorite fighting games of the generation, and I want to see it live up to its full potential while not leaving any easy wins on the table.

At the end of the day though, Granblue Fantasy: Versus has still achieved a significant success that beat out the likes of BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle's lifetime sales as another ArcSys-developed fighting game in only nine months. There's still millions of PlayStation 4 and PC owners plus original Granblue Fantasy fans who don't have the game though and could if the price is right.

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