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Helldivers 2 crushes God of War Ragnarok’s PlayStation sales record

Helldivers 2 is the fastest-selling game PlayStation has ever launched, and Sony will now feel super confident about its live service push.

Helldivers 2 sales: a split image showing a white PlayStation logo on a blue background and a helmeted soldier from Helldivers 2

If you’d have told me before it launched that PlayStation’s democracy-spreading shooter Helldivers 2 would become its fastest-selling game launch ever, I wouldn’t have believed you. Well, it’s time for me to eat some humble pie, as Sony just revealed that Helldivers 2 sales hit 12 million in its first 12 weeks, meaning that it has dethroned God of War Ragnarok as the fastest-selling new PlayStation title.

This impressive statistic comes from Sony’s new reports for the last financial year. During a webcast it revealed Helldivers 2’s incredible achievement, and said that Arrowhead’s co-op game is “far exceeding expectations”.

Helldivers 2 has already cemented itself as one of the best PS5 games of the year, with its community-driven co-op action and relentless stream of new content going down a storm. The multiplayer game is one of the first to emerge from PlayStation’s mission to create more live service titles, and the fact that it’s now broken this huge sales record will no-doubt fill Sony with optimism that it’s plan will work.

While big-budget, single-player PS5 exclusives like previous record holder God of War Ragnarok have become PlayStation’s hallmark, there is a big gap in its upcoming slate of new PS5 games when it comes to its most popular franchises. While we might see some Spider-Man 2 DLC swing in at some point, Sony has already admitted that there will be “no major first-party titles” in the current financial year, which ends on March 31, 2025.

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Helldivers 2’s sales have also seemingly carried Sony when it comes to the most recent quarter, at least. Speaking to VGC, industry consultant Dr Serkan Toto says that “Sony should send some champagne to Sweden [home of Arrowhead studios]: Without Helldivers 2, the PlayStation numbers would have looked a lot worse last quarter.”

During the investor call, it also reconfirmed that its next live service launch, PvP shooter Concord, is still due to launch in 2024. While we’ve seen and heard very little about the game, the fact the Concord release date will also fall in this dry spell for major releases will be crucial for Sony – that is if it can achieve even half the success Helldivers 2 has managed.

I wrote at the start of this year about PlayStation’s live service push and how there’s a real risk of player fatigue and some of its bets not paying off. Already we’ve seen both ends of the spectrum – Foamstars, which launched just a few weeks before Helldivers 2, has already faded into obscurity, while Arrowhead’s shooter has gone on to smash records. Even with this small sample size, the unpredictability of live service games has become clear. Sony probably feels confident now that Concord can go on to be another success story, however it’s never a guarantee.

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These huge Helldivers 2 numbers also bolsters Sony’s shift in attitude to become more multi-platform. Not to take away from Helldivers 2’s achievement at all, but it did achieve these sales across both PS5 and PC, whereas Ragnarok was only on console.

The multi-platform push is a trend that is quickly gaining momentum. As well as Sony pushing more of its games onto PC post-launch, rival platform Xbox, of course, has just sent the likes of Sea of Thieves over to PS5. Plus, Square Enix (which has often sided with PlayStation when it comes to releasing its games on console) has just announced an “aggressive” push to bring games to as many platforms as possible.