This shouldn't be news to anyone who's followed Outriders for the better part of the past year. The developers made it clear that Outriders is not a live service game. The third-person shooter's story isn't going to benefit from a constant influx of new content every month.
For all intents and purposes, Outriders is a finished game until People Can Fly decides to release a DLC or expansion, which it's not required to do.
This brings us to another reason why it's probably good that Outriders is not a live service game: Outriders is completely enjoyable as it is.
Unlike other live service games like Destiny 2 that has to keep you hooked with the promise of things are going to get better, Outriders already delivers a complete experience. It has a good story premise and strong shooting mechanics that make it enjoyable for both solo and co-op gameplay right now and not in the future.
In a day and age where a lot of studios are looking to milk their games for as long as possible, even at the expense of lifeless content, Outriders is a breath of fresh air. Unlike other titles that promise long-term entertainment, Outriders promised to be a shooter-looter that players can enjoy right out of the gate and, so far, it has delivered.
With that said, one can't help but wonder and ask, would it be better if Outriders was a live service game?
What Does Being a Live Service Game Mean?
A "live service" game is a title designed specifically to keep people in a gameplay loop for as long as possible in hopes of getting them to pay for microtransactions regularly. Many developers often accomplish this by promising a regular stream of upcoming and new content, such as what Crystal Dynamics is doing with Marvel's Avengers.
The main problem with live service games is that, as we've already mentioned, it often comes at the expense of dumbing down the initial gameplay experience. This way, players are kept engaged. It also gives them a reason to come back for more.
While there are a lot of live service games that offer quality content upfront and continuously improve on it, it is simply so much better and more economical for studios to purposely offer "watered down" content. This makes players think that gameplay is going to improve and that things are going to get better.
Would Outriders Be Better as a Live Service Game?
Even though Outriders is not a live service game, it does have the potential to be one. However, just because it could be a live service game, it doesn't mean that Outriders should be one.
It's true that People Can Fly could definitely do so much better in terms of the balancing and bug fixing department. To date, there are still so many bugs that continue to plague Outriders that make it unplayable for a lot of people. Surprisingly enough, the ones most affected are those who are willing to sink in hundreds of hours on the game.
Yet, despite the issues, there are still players who are enjoying what it has to offer right now. There's no guarantee that future content could improve on it.
Keep in mind that People Can Fly took 6 years to make Outriders and even then, it was delayed with a demo released to help generate interest. It's not a perfect game, by any means, but it is complete. An attempt to turn Outriders into a live service game when it wasn't meant to be one could mar the overall gameplay experience.
Is Outriders DLC and Expansion In Development?
People Can Fly has mentioned numerous times in the past that Outriders is not a live service title, but the studio has not closed its doors on the Outriders universe just yet. In fact, in numerous interviews, various figureheads at People Can Fly have mentioned that it is open to releasing potential expansions and DLCs for Outriders.
If nothing else, this probably means that this isn't the last we'll hear of Outriders and/or People Can Fly.
What's the Future for Outriders?
At the moment, Outriders has plenty of content to keep its players busy. The main campaign alone is around 30 hours long. This is excluding all of the side missions and optional material. If you add it all together, you're looking at an easy 50 hours worth of gameplay just to beat the base game.
Once you're finished with Outriders, it has enough endgame content to keep you occupied for just as long if not longer. It refers to these missions as Expeditions, which is a new mission type accessible only after beating the game.
On top of all of this, Outriders has far more loot for you to collect than you'd like to count and four different classes to experiment with. It would take more than 100 hours to squeeze every morsel of content out of Outriders. Beyond this, we're hoping that People Can Fly releases an expansion for Outriders with a self-contained story.
Until then, People Can Fly should keep itself busy trying to get Outriders to run with little to no problems.