Digital Extremes has had plenty of success with Warframe, but the company’s planned follow-up - a hero shooter called The Amazing Eternals - never made it past the closed beta stage. There are plenty of reasons why, and one of them was the fact that LawBreakers never managed to take off.
“A lot of things were converging at the same time then and what we realised was that it was the right game at the wrong time,” VP of publishing Meridith Braun tells us. “The competitive landscape at that time was pretty hefty. We just saw LawBreakers not do so great, and it was a fantastic game, so that was sad. That happened right when we were starting our closed beta for Amazing Eternals.”
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LawBreakers got plenty of negative publicity around its release, but it was directed more at the game’s low player count than its actual quality. The game reviewed well enough, and the few players it had seemed to enjoy sticking with it, though it wasn’t enough to compete against the likes of Overwatch and the rising tide of battle royale. At the time, director Cliff Bleszinski pointed to Warframe as an example of a game able to escape low player counts.
At around the same time, Digital Extremes announced the Plains of Eidolon expansion. Braun says “that really blew up and doubled the numbers on Warframe, and suddenly that became the resource hog that we hadn't realised.”
“We weren't seeing the traction we had hoped for in the closed beta, and weighing that against the success of Plains of Eidolon it just made good business sense to pour those resources back into Warframe.” Thus, The Amazing Eternals was cancelled. “It was a hard decisions but it was the right decision at that time.”
Warframe is now regularly in Steam’s top five games, and with the Railjack release date coming up Digital Extremes has plenty more in store. But the developers aren’t giving up entirely on launching a new game.
“I think we’ll try again,” says Braun, “but I don’t know when.”