Days Gone director Jeff Ross revealed that "local studio management" always made Bend Studio feel that Days Gone was a failure despite selling around 9 million copies.
Days Gone was not received as well as Sony would have hoped, reaching "only" 71 Metacritic score, which typically is not that high for a game from Sony's first-party production.
Despite the lower than expected score, Days Gone sold quite well. The game reached 9 million sold copies which is certainly a great achievement, especially for a brand new IP and "just another zombie game".
Jeff Ross, Days Gone game director who left Bend Studio in 2020 revealed that despite being a commercial success, Days Gone was considered a massive disappointment by management.
"At the time I left Sony, Days Gone had been out for a year and a half (and a month), and sold over 8 million copies. It's since gone on to sell more, and then a million+ on Steam. Local studio management always made us feel like it was a big disappointment," Ross tweeted.
Why would Sony consider Days Gone a flop when the game sold almost 10 million copies remains a mystery. Perhaps, the overall perception that this is one of the weaker PlayStation exclusives is what made them pull the plug on the sequel? Who knows.
After launching Days Gone in April 2019, Jeff Ross left Bend Studio in 2020 to seek new challenges. You may recall that on the same day of his departure, writer John Garvin also announced that he will be leaving the company too.
Bend Studio have confirmed that they are currently working on a brand new IP.