The Finals Player Count Continues to Plummet

Is The Finals...finally coming to an end?

The Finals launched in late 2023 as a free-to-play, arena-based FPS game poised to compete against giants such as Apex Legends and CS2. However, it seems that this has not been the case when looking at the general current player interest, and player count of the game.

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Here’s what happened since its launch and why The Finals’ player count continues to drop in 2024.

Image via Embark Studios

When it comes to FPS games, The Finals seemed to have everything that players want. Well, almost everything. The game features different classes in the form of a light, medium, and heavy class, with various weapons and gadgets for each class. Fast-paced combat, competitive-based modes, and even a plethora of in-game cosmetics to customize your character to your liking.

But even with all of this, The Finals still hasn’t managed to keep players engaged, losing over 200,000 players on Steam since its launch. While there isn’t one sole cause for this dramatic fall in the player base, we can pinpoint several pain points that may have contributed.

How Many People Play The Finals in 2024?

According to SteamDB, As of April 3, 2024, The Finals has a player count of approximately 28,000. This is in stark contrast compared to its all-time peak at launch in December 2023, as it then boasted an impressive 242,619 active players.

But what contributed to this loss in player count?

The Finals Has A Content Problem

The Finals Light Class
Screenshot by Prima Games

The Finals does indeed offer a lot of depth in terms of its gameplay. As previously stated, there’s several classes to choose from all with their unique benefits and drawbacks. The skill gap in The Finals is also quite large. This means that by investing time and energy into the game, you will stand out from the fray almost every time you hop in. But while it has a lot of depth, it lacks range.

The Finals only has two playable game modes – Quick Cash and Bank It. Quick Cash is a casual mode where teams fight to gain control of one vault. Respawn timers are low and stakes aren’t high. Bank It, on the other hand, is a much more competitive mode. A total of 4 teams need to extract as much money as they can from several vaults scattered around the map, and bank them within the 15-minute timer.

Both of these modes are fun and offer fast-paced, high-octane gameplay. The problem arises when these experiences become pretty much the same every time you play. Sure there will be times when you encounter something new, but those times are usually an anomaly.

The Finals has also been criticized for not having custom lobbies or private matches. The sentiment in the community is that because the game seems to be so competitive leaning, the addition of private matches would bolster that competitive audience by allowing players to host their own tournaments.

With so many new games being released nowadays, gamers have a short attention span. The Finals simply doesn’t have enough content to keep players interested for long periods of time. And even though The Finals has had several updates since its launch, including a Christmas-themed event, and even the recent Season 2 update, there wasn’t enough content at launch.

The Finals A.I Controversy

The use of AI to replace voice actors and in-game commentary has loomed over The Finals since even before its launch. While some players don’t seem to mind it, there has also been a huge population that sees it as lazy and low effort. In a tweet posted in October 2023 highlighting the use of AI in The Finals, many users responded in dissatisfaction, upset, and even disappointment when learning that AI would be present in the game.

The use of AI also led players to criticize the lack of story and lore within The Finals. The gameplay may be polished, but oftentimes the environment where the gameplay takes place doesn’t have that same feel. Contrastingly, popular FPS titles such as Apex Legends, Call of Duty, Overwatch 2, and even CS:GO all have deeply embedded lore and storylines behind their characters and operations. While this isn’t always a necessity, it does add to overall immersion when playing.

Amid the backlash, The Finals lead at Embark Studios Sven Grundberg stated, “One thing that we want to make really clear in terms of how we use those tools in The Finals is that we use a combination of recorded voice actors and AI-based TTS that is based on contracted voice actors, we don’t generate voice and video from thin air”.

He went on to say that the AI tools used within The Finals allow the team to “work better and faster, and do more with less”.

For now, it does seem that Embark Studios is standing strong on its decision to incorporate AI within The Finals. However, this decision may have also impacted the players’ ability to feel connected to the game on a deeper level.

Can The Finals Have A Resurgence?

PC Minimum Requirements The Finals
Image via IGDB

Despite the drawbacks that The Finals currently face, the game still has a small, but healthy community. This can be attributed to the fluid gameplay and competitive elements. There’s still potential for the developers to address player feedback, introduce a wider range of content, and enhance immersion to attract and retain a broader audience.

Games like Call of Duty have figured out how to consistently re-invent their models by introducing new ways to play, while also revisiting past models that worked. A prime example of this is the return of Rebirth in Warzone.

Whether through consistent updates, community engagement, or new and innovative features, there is still a path to revitalizing The Finals by listening to players and evolving to meet the ever-changing demands of the modern-day gaming landscape.

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