There may have been numerous announcements and several dozen new trailers for games making their debut, but the biggest news by far out of the Gamescom convention in Germany on Tuesday was the word that “Rise of the Tomb Raider” would be an Xbox exclusive.
The news lead to much confusion and anger from PC and PlayStation fans, especially as both Crystal Dynamics and Microsoft representatives played the usual PR game of avoiding answering the most basic question when asked straight up – would this be a timed exclusive, or are Xbox 360 and Xbox One the only platforms that will get the game.
Credit goes to Xbox head Phil Spencer though who, when speaking with EuroGamer, opted to play it straight and confirmed the deal is a timed exclusive only but couldn’t say how long that exclusivity period would last:
“I have Tomb Raider shipping next holiday exclusively on Xbox. It is Xbox 360 and Xbox One. I’m not trying to fake anybody out in terms of where this thing is. What they do with the franchise in the long run is not mine. I don’t control it. So all I can talk about is the deal I have. I don’t know where else Tomb Raider goes….The deal has a duration. I didn’t buy it. I don’t own the franchise.
It’s not because I’m trying to be a headfake on anybody. It’s a deal between us and the partner. People ask me how much did we pay. There are certain things I’m just not going to talk about because it’s a business deal between us and then. Obviously the deal does have a duration. I didn’t buy the IP in perpetuity.”
So “Rise of the Tomb Raider” on PC & PS4 sometime in the second half of 2016? It’s quite possible. The deal does mean that “Rise of the Tomb Raider” on Xbox One will now go head to head next Fall with Sony’s same genre juggernaut “Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End” on PS4. Both are expected to do well though – the “Tomb Raider” reboot sold 3.4 million copies in its first month, whereas “Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception” sold 3.8 million copies on its launch day.