As an homage to the early Call of Duty games, Battalion 1944 entered early access in 2018. Although there were some issues, which were to be expected in an early access game, it appeared like a very good beginning for a specialized multiplayer FPS.
According to its November 2018 acquisition of a 20% share in developer Bulkhead, Square Enix, which had published Battalion 1944 as part of its independent game publishing Square Enix Collective, seemed to agree.
However, neither the game nor the collaboration between Bulkhead and Square Enix turned out quite the way they were intended.
Since mid-2020, Battalion 1944’s average concurrent player count has remained in the single digits. A console launch promised in a 2016 Kickstarter never materialized.
And today, Bulkhead declared that their partnership with Square Enix has “officially dissolved.”
The firm expressed its “great disappointment” that Battalion 1944 was never released on consoles and promised to reimburse all console-related Kickstarter funders. We want to apologize for the delay and thank everyone who supported the console version.
The statement marks the culmination of a frustrating procedure that went on longer than expected and for years. Bulkhead stated that the console version of Battalion 1944 was “still being created” as soon as April 2021.
Community manager Aaron Baker posted on Reddit, “Loads of stuff we can’t talk about right now, sorry. “will eventually become more obvious. I am aware that the scenario is unfortunate, but for the time being, that is how things stand.”
Interestingly, Baker claimed in the same post that a move to free-to-play “ain’t going to happen,” but Bulkhead also revealed today that Battalion: Legacy, a “reprised and final edition of Battalion 1944,” will be made available on Steam for free.
In Baker’s defense, Legacy appears to be completely free to play. Gamers can rent or buy game servers, but other than that, everything appears to be available to all.