Tomb Raider Made Money Despite Publisher's Early Disappointment

Tomb Raider Made Money Despite Publisher's Early Disappointment

Tomb Raider Lara Croft

Tomb Raider's executive producer Scot Amos has revealed that the game has made Square Enix a profit.

Back in the early portion of 2013 Square Enix published several big name titles that it would be gigantic sellers. To their credit, the games in question, Tomb Raider for instance, all sold well. That being the case, they didn't do as well as Square Enix had expected and helped to contribute to a 10 billion yen loss that left many within the company staggered. It's now been revealed however that, despite the publisher's early disappointment, Tomb Raider wound up being profitable after all.

"By the end of last year - Tomb Raider is in the black," said Scot Amos, the game's executive producer. "We've crossed the line of profitability for the last-gen and PC versions." While this is obviously good news for the rebooted franchise, Amos says its future was never in question. "As a franchise, Square Enix is clearly invested in us," he said. "They already let us get kickstarted on a sequel and they backed us with this [the game's upcoming Definitive Edition]."

Amos dismisses, in turn, the idea that the Tomb Raider: Definite Edition, which will add new content and improved visuals for the PS4 and Xbox One, will be just a cash grab on the part of the publisher. "Square didn't approach us saying to do XYZ, at the end of the game. The dev team said 'there's all these things that we want to do', but we'd pushed those machines to the limit at the time. So it was us who approached both Square Enix and our first-party partners at Microsoft and Sony." Regardless of who said or did what, Tomb Raider's improved sales is undeniably good news. We can only hope that other developers and publishers perhaps take it as a sign that you don't need to sell every last copy of your game in its first weeks. Sometimes the long run can be just as rewarding as the sprint.

Source: Eurogamer

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"Why expecting a game with a big budget to sell Call of Duty numbers just because it has a big budget is stupid, lesson number 319"

I played and Liked Tomb Raider, but I don't think it was ever going to sell ten bazillion and set the world on fire. Especially not with the Tomb Raider series having such a spotty track record. It certainly didn't need a marketing budget as big as the game's itself.

Just confirms that publishers don't know anything.

I wonder how much was lost producing the definitive versions on the PXBone4...That being said though, Tomb Raider looked really solid; I've ignored the series for the past two generations but this looks like something I can really get into.

Well, at least they're happy now. Although I don't think any of us actually consider Tomb Raider to be a failure anyway, since it actually sold quite well. I think perhaps most of the money lost was in overly extensive marketing than the actual game production itself.

Shoggoth2588:
I wonder how much was lost producing the definitive versions on the PXBone4...That being said though, Tomb Raider looked really solid; I've ignored the series for the past two generations but this looks like something I can really get into.

Tomb Raider is a pretty fantastic game, all things considered. Easily one of my favorites in recent memory.

I'd definitely recommend looking into it if you're on the fence.

Tomb Raider was a refreshing surprise for me. I'd got bored of them after TR3 but purchased the latest one on a whim, and it was a delight. Kind of like putting your hand in an old coat pocket and finding a fiver.

Tomb Raider definitely surprised me. While, yeah, it can get a bit TOO action-y and a there are NEVER enough tombs to satisfy me, it was a supremely polished game that I had no qualms about playing through twice in a row and getting all the achievements for.

Now that we are being all open and honest here how about you give us an inside scoop on what the actual development cost was and how much was shovelled up marketing ass?

Square Enix, squeeling at the first sign of displeasure, but the market is patient.

I do like the look of the Definitive Edition, the only problem (well a few) is; A) already played and finished it, B) already got a buttload of games in the backlog, and C) That shit expensive son.

One of the best games I played last year. So, the Steam version of the game gets a free patch to "Definitive Edition"?

ShirowShirow:
"Why expecting a game with a big budget to sell Call of Duty numbers just because it has a big budget is stupid, lesson number 319"

I played and Liked Tomb Raider, but I don't think it was ever going to sell ten bazillion and set the world on fire. Especially not with the Tomb Raider series having such a spotty track record. It certainly didn't need a marketing budget as big as the game's itself.

Marketing budgets are usually around 2 to 4 times more the cost of the game itself... I wouldnt even be surprised if the game only costed 25 millions and all the rest was marketing.
Thats one of the laws of modern capitalism; what really matters is to make your clients believe your product is good, the actual products quality comes in second place.

So the lesson I'm taking away from this, don't expect your hard work to pay off right away.

This, along with Square Enix's news about how Dogs and Absolution "failed" is why I'm really sad they own Eidos. They're just gonna keep blaming their successful western developers so they can ignore the fact that Final Fantasy is complete garbage.

Bors Mistral:
One of the best games I played last year. So, the Steam version of the game gets a free patch to "Definitive Edition"?

unfortunately no. they said they are happy enough with the pc version. the DE is only mend for the new consoles.

here you can read for your self.
http://forums.eidosgames.com/showthread.php?t=140634

Reading these comments, I can only assume that half the commenters didn't actually read the OP.

Again.

OT: Tomb Raider was my GOTY. So seeing that it pulled a profit in the end makes me a happy panda.

Well good. I've only played the very early TR games. Never got stuck with the series, but I decided to give this one a shot. It was very well made, very fun, and overall a great experience, so I'm on the hunt for sequels for sure. Great game overall.

I still find it amazing that they managed to be a top seller and still be in the red. I'm glad they are making a profit now.

Metalrocks:

Bors Mistral:
One of the best games I played last year. So, the Steam version of the game gets a free patch to "Definitive Edition"?

unfortunately no. they said they are happy enough with the pc version. the DE is only mend for the new consoles.

here you can read for your self.
http://forums.eidosgames.com/showthread.php?t=140634

So the developers pushed the machines to their limit execpt the PC (which kinda doesnt have limits) and theres all this stuff they can do but not here, coze its not going to make the money back. No really its not a cash grab....

I liked the game a lot actually, but yeah, it depends on what they were expecting for revenue. It's not because you do a reboot of a popular franchise that you will defacto sell millions.

Am looking forward to another Tomb Raider game though. I do hope that they manage to make it different enough from this one.

MrHide-Patten:
Square Enix, squeeling at the first sign of displeasure, but the market is patient.

the market, of course, isn't bound to shareholders to explain lost revenues and/or operating losses.

TristanBelmont:
This, along with Square Enix's news about how Dogs and Absolution "failed" is why I'm really sad they own Eidos. They're just gonna keep blaming their successful western developers so they can ignore the fact that Final Fantasy is complete garbage.

Final Fantasy still sells like hotcakes, doesn't it?

Anyway, Sleeping Dogs became a long-term success too, so there might just be a lesson in here.

However, they were still horribly unrealistic in both marketing and expectations (and possibly budgeting).

lacktheknack:
Reading these comments, I can only assume that half the commenters didn't actually read the OP.

Again.

Not exactly surprising.

Mark B:
No really its not a cash grab....

There's a rather vast difference between "cash grab" and "not fiscally feasible."

They should consider this for what it is: a successful game, a fortunate escape, and a lesson how the market cannot sustain 30 blockbuster releases a year that each need 4-5 million sales plus DLC change to make back their costs; and won't be able to again for decades, potentially. The credit bubble popped, the losses we dumped on the masses, and consumers have debts to service on decaying incomes and rising living costs.

As much as I liked the game, at least half of that was the representation of what it could and should have been. Many of the interesting things about the game were heavily marketed and despite their promise, ended up being little more than compromised window dressing transplanted onto a lowest common denominator action game with regenerating health.

They sold me a survival-focused Tomb Raider game driven by an origin story focusing on a sophisticated character arc; that's the experience I signed up for, but it wasn't the reality of what I bought.

It's because of this coward-stricken broad ambition with its conflicted systems and wasted features, that I don't think it deserved to do much better than it did; in terms of commercial success and GOTY recognition. I hope they take the opportunity with the planning for the sequel for a re-think in terms of gameplay direction, so they get something smarter with a genuinely coherent focus that's greater than the sum of its parts.

In this games case, it should have meant more hunter/gathering for subsistence and resources, scampering to throw dirt in attackers eyes and working through Lara's anxieties in navigating deep dark scary caves; and less arrows layed nonsensically across your path for the next ridiculous shoot-out later on. Though that boat has now sailed, I still think more emergent gameplay and a lower bodycount should paradoxically be on the cards..

StewShearer:
Amos dismisses, in turn, the idea that the Tomb Raider: Definite Edition, which will add new content and improved visuals for the PS4 and Xbox One, will be just a cash grab on the part of the publisher.

The DEFINITE edition? In case you weren't sure you bought a Tomb Raider game, this next one is definitely Tomb Raider. No more Lori Kropht. Maybe some pistols instead of bow and arrow.

Hmmm. I am starting to see why my daughter enfuriates me. I think she may have picked up some of my snarking traits. Yeah. Definitively.

Double post due to new rules agreement. Sorry for the inconvenience.

reiniat:

ShirowShirow:
"Why expecting a game with a big budget to sell Call of Duty numbers just because it has a big budget is stupid, lesson number 319"

I played and Liked Tomb Raider, but I don't think it was ever going to sell ten bazillion and set the world on fire. Especially not with the Tomb Raider series having such a spotty track record. It certainly didn't need a marketing budget as big as the game's itself.

Marketing budgets are usually around 2 to 4 times more the cost of the game itself... I wouldnt even be surprised if the game only costed 25 millions and all the rest was marketing.
Thats one of the laws of modern capitalism; what really matters is to make your clients believe your product is good, the actual products quality comes in second place.

What makes the fact that these companies are spending such ridiculously high amounts even more stupid is that these days it's actually pretty easy to get the word out to millions of people for nothing or next to nothing, mostly thanks to the internet.

Oh so all they had to do is give it a chance and not be drama queens because it didn't make a bucket-load of cash in the ridiculous 3 weeks they waited before calling it a failure.

What a surprise...

m19:
Oh so all they had to do is give it a chance and not be drama queens because it didn't make a bucket-load of cash in the ridiculous 3 weeks they waited before calling it a failure.

What a surprise...

Agreed. Although, I have to say, the original rendition looked good enough. I really don't see what this Definitive Edition can possible add that won't come across as a cheap cash grab.

If nothing else, it's a middle finger to all the PC adopters, unless an update is provided.

Also have to agree with this youtuber who calls it "fraud edition."

Makes no sense to charge full price for this again.

 

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