The studio estimated breaking even within “six, eight, nine months” but it will happen a lot sooner.
For Ninja Theory, Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice was a pretty big risk. While the game itself doesn’t have an enormous budget, the studio – known for big efforts like Heavenly Sword and Enslaved: Odyssey to the West – was attempting to deliver a triple A level of quality within an indie package. This was also the first time that the developer would be its own publisher.
Despite numerous delays, however, Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice did very well with reviewers. Ninja Theory revealed that it didn’t need to sell millions of copies to prove profitable. But the real question is: Did it eventually become profitable?
Not quite but chief creative director Tameem Antoniades told VentureBeat that the game was going to break even a lot sooner than projected. “I think it’s almost broken even, or it’s about to break even in the next couple of weeks.” Antoniades notes that, “we weren’t expecting to break even for six, eight, nine months.” Even taking the minimum estimate, Hellblade will have earned its investment back three months earlier than planned.
Self-publishing the game certainly helped as it helped the developer earn back more money. “It’s opened up a bunch of doors and possibilities that we just didn’t have until this point.”
To that end, you can expect more information on the game’s retail performance, with the possibility of sales numbers, when the final developer diary releases. “We want the data out there so other developers, if they want to do something similar, they have a data point, hopefully, to help encourage them to do more games like this,” said Antoniades.
If you’re curious about Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice and whether it’s worth looking into or not, check out our official review of the game here.