Co-op looter shooter The First Descendant dethrones Elden Ring as Steam’s top seller, but 43% positive early user reviews frame a rough start overall

Co-op looter shooter The First Descendant dethrones Elden Ring as Steam’s top seller, but 43% positive early user reviews frame a rough start overall

The gaming community was recently shaken when Co-op looter shooter The First Descendant dethrones Elden Ring as Steam’s top seller, an achievement that few would have predicted given the latter’s monumental success. Despite this impressive feat, the early reception has been mixed, with 43% positive early user reviews casting a shadow over its initial triumph. This dichotomy between commercial success and user satisfaction presents a compelling narrative worth exploring.

A New Contender Rises

The First Descendant is an ambitious project from Nexon, a renowned developer with a track record of creating engaging multiplayer experiences. This co-op looter shooter promises a blend of high-octane combat, intricate loot systems, and cooperative gameplay that appeals to both casual and hardcore gamers. The game’s premise revolves around players taking on the role of Descendants, wielding powerful abilities and customizable weapons to fend off an alien invasion. The allure of cooperative gameplay, combined with the thrill of looting rare items, has undoubtedly contributed to its surge in popularity.

Surpassing a Giant

Elden Ring, developed by FromSoftware and published by Bandai Namco Entertainment, has been a dominant force in the gaming world since its release. Its rich lore, challenging gameplay, and the collaborative effort between Hidetaka Miyazaki and George R.R. Martin have made it a critically acclaimed masterpiece. Thus, when The First Descendant dethrones Elden Ring as Steam’s top seller, it signifies more than just a shift in sales figures; it reflects a changing tide in gamer preferences and the potential for new genres to captivate audiences.

The Early Reviews: A Mixed Bag

While the commercial success of The First Descendant is undeniable, the early user reviews paint a more complex picture. With only 43% positive early user reviews, the game has faced significant criticism alongside its praise. This dichotomy raises questions about the underlying issues that might be contributing to the lukewarm reception.

Common Complaints

Many users have pointed out a variety of issues that have marred their initial experience with the game:

  1. Performance Issues: Numerous players have reported technical difficulties, including frame rate drops, crashes, and long loading times. These performance problems can severely impact the immersive experience that the game aims to provide.
  2. Gameplay Mechanics: Some users have expressed dissatisfaction with certain gameplay mechanics. The looting system, while extensive, has been criticized for being overly complex or unbalanced, leading to frustration rather than enjoyment.
  3. Server Stability: As a co-op game, stable servers are crucial. Early reviews have highlighted frequent disconnections and matchmaking problems, which can be particularly detrimental in a game that relies heavily on multiplayer interaction.
  4. Content Depth: Despite a promising start, some players feel that the game lacks sufficient content to sustain long-term interest. The narrative, though engaging, is seen by some as underdeveloped, leaving players wanting more depth and variety in missions and storylines.

Positive Highlights

On the flip side, there are several aspects of The First Descendant that have garnered positive feedback:

  1. Visuals and Design: The game’s graphics have been widely praised. From detailed character models to immersive environments, the visual presentation is one of the standout features.
  2. Cooperative Gameplay: For many, the ability to team up with friends and tackle challenges together is a major draw. The cooperative elements have been well-received, with players appreciating the synergy between different character abilities.
  3. Customization Options: The game offers a robust customization system, allowing players to tailor their characters and weapons to their preferred playstyle. This level of personalization is a significant plus for many gamers.

Balancing Commercial Success with User Satisfaction

The journey of The First Descendant highlights a broader trend in the gaming industry where initial commercial success does not always equate to sustained user satisfaction. This phenomenon is not unique to this game alone but is a challenge that many developers face in the competitive gaming market.

Steps Forward

To maintain its position and improve user satisfaction, Nexon must address the criticisms highlighted in early reviews. Here are some potential steps they could take:

Technical Improvements: Prioritizing bug fixes and performance optimization can significantly enhance the player experience. Regular updates that address these issues can help retain the player base and attract new users.

Gameplay Balancing: Fine-tuning the looting system and other gameplay mechanics based on user feedback can make the game more enjoyable and accessible. This might involve adjusting the rarity of items, rebalancing character abilities, or simplifying certain aspects of the game.

Server Stability: Ensuring robust server performance is critical for any online game. Investing in better server infrastructure and improving matchmaking algorithms can mitigate many of the current issues.

Expanding Content: Adding more content, whether through expansions, new missions, or additional storylines, can keep the game fresh and engaging. Regular content updates can sustain player interest and extend the game’s lifespan.


    The tale of how Co-op looter shooter The First Descendant dethrones Elden Ring as Steam’s top seller, but 43% positive early user reviews frame a rough start overall is a fascinating one. It underscores the complexity of the gaming industry, where commercial success and user satisfaction must be carefully balanced. While The First Descendant has made an impressive entry, its long-term success will depend on how effectively Nexon can address the initial criticisms and build upon the game’s strong foundation. The journey ahead is challenging, but with the right adjustments, The First Descendant could solidify its place as a beloved title in the gaming community.