Various retailers, including Amazon, GameStop, and Wal-Mart, discount the price of Battleborn right before the launch of Blizzard’s Overwatch game.
With Battleborn having just released earlier this month, gamers may be surprised to learn that the game is already being discounted to $40 by some of the biggest game retailers in the world, including GameStop, Amazon, and Wal-Mart. This sudden $20 price drop has interesting timing, as it coincides with the launch of a game with similar MOBA-inspired elements, Overwatch.
While Battleborn and Overwatch aren’t technically MOBAs in a traditional sense, both games borrow elements from the genre. For example, Battleborn has a large cast of distinct characters, as does Overwatch, and both games require teams to work off the strengths and weaknesses of the other characters (or heroes) on the roster. These similarities have led many to compare the games, and it seems as though retailers have recognized this as well, and think that Battleborn and Overwatch are in direct competition with each other.
It’s unclear how much the fan base for Battleborn overlaps with those interested in Overwatch, but retail giants must think that there is at least some overlap. The price drop seems to indicate that consumers that are interested in both Battleborn and Overwatch will be choosing one game over the other, and so retailers have adjusted the price of Battleborn accordingly.
Another possibility is that Battleborn sales have been slowing down in the weeks since its release. We gave Battleborn a mixed review, as did most other publications, and that combined with heavy competition from Doom, Uncharted 4, and Overwatch this month may have resulted in the game not meeting sales expectations.
Furthermore, the marketing for Battleborn left something to be desired, with the game having a bit of an identity crisis. Gearbox has insisted that Battleborn isn’t a MOBA, despite the game being clearly inspired by the genre, and having game modes that echo popular MOBA titles like League of Legends. Considering the current popularity of the MOBA genre, it seems odd that Gearbox didn’t try to play up Battleborn‘s MOBA sensibilities instead.
Regardless of what genre Battleborn falls under, we know that sales for the game started off strong, but in a recent investors call, Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick said that the game may not enjoy the same sales success as the games in Gearbox’s Borderlands franchise. It would make sense for Zelnick to ease investor expectations of Battleborn‘s performance if it is already struggling in sales, which could be further evidence that poor sales performance is why the game is being hit with a price drop already.
Whether Battleborn‘s price drop has come due to incoming competition from Overwatch or the game failing to maintain its initially strong sales, the fact remains that gamers can now pick it up for $20 cheaper. It will be interesting to see if Battleborn‘s price drop helps it turn around any sales misfortunes it may be having, and keeps it relevant even after Overwatch launches.
Battleborn is available now for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.