Phil Spencer Takes “Full Responsibility” for Redfall’s Poor Release and Promises “a Better Job” with Starfield: “I’m Upset with Myself”

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Image: Arkane

Redfall released this week to overwhelmingly negative reaction, and one person who isn’t afraid to take the blame is the head of Xbox. Speaking on today’s episode of the Kinda Funny Xcast, Phil Spencer addressed the criticism surrounding Arkane Austin’s new vampire shooter, stating that he is going to take “full responsibility for launching a game that [needed] to be great” and how he’s “upset with myself.” Redfall has a 57 Metascore and 21.9 User Score on Metacritic at the time of this writing, and while it’s unclear whether the game’s reputation can be saved, Spencer does go on to suggest that Starfield will be a much better release, with the Xbox teams having done “a better job” on the space-faring RPG from Bethesda Game Studios.

From a Kinda Funny Xcast transcript:

I’m disappointed, I’m upset with myself. I kind of revisit our process. I think back to the announcement of 60 frames-per-second, then we weren’t shipping 60 frames-per-second, that was our punch in the chin – rightfully – a couple of weeks ago.

I’m a huge supporter of Arkane Austin. Their track record is awesome, I love a lot of the great games they’ve built. This is one where the team didn’t hit their own internal goals when it launched. I think it’s maybe a little simplistic to just say “Hey if you would have just delayed it three months the core creative of the game would have delivered on something that was different to what it was.”

When we acquire studios, there are games that are in development, and then there’s things that are either really early in development or not even conceived yet. I think we need to improve in engaging with games that are mid-way through production when they become part of Xbox.

We didn’t do a good job early on in engaging Arkane Austin to really help them understand what it meant to be part of Xbox and part of first-party, and use some of our internal resources to help them move along that journey even faster. We left them to work on the game.

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Tsing Mui
News poster at The FPS Review.

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