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Steady steps for MS at Gamescom press briefing

GDC Europe/Gamescom 2014 in association with
Steady steps for MS at Gamescom press briefing

Tue 12 Aug 2014 1:23pm GMT / 9:23am EDT / 6:23am PDT
HardwarePublishinggamescom 2014

New Tomb Raider to be platform exclusive, 3 hardware bundles announced

Microsoft has taken relatively cautious steps in its Gamescom press briefing, revealing more details of some of its ID@Xbox titles, new hardware bundles and a couple of big surprises, all punctuated with the usual AAA razzle-dazzle.

Understandably enough, big hitting stalwarts like FIFA and Call of Duty were given considerable stage time, with FIFA 15 Ultimate Team Legends revealed as an Xbox exclusive. In a traditional tip of the hat to being in Europe, Peter Schmeichel made the show's only awkward celebrity appearance to demonstrate it. In addition, a new FIFA 15 Xbox One bundle was announced: available from September 25th for 349.99.

ID@Xbox took to the stage next, beginning with a quick-cut trailer of the couple of dozen titles on their way to the program, including a very sneaky inclusion of the previously unannounced Goat Simulator. Space Engineers, Smite, Superhot, Plague Inc. and Below also took a share of the limelight, showing a marked commitment by Microsoft to its indie promises.

Next up was Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, with an elongated gameplay demo which saw a team of exo-suited and booted soldiers attempting to prevent the demolition of the Golden Gate Bridge by non-specified bad guys. Spoilers: they fail, with the demo ending as the player character and his gruff British companion stared mournfully into a gaping hole on the famous sightseeing destination. Sledgehammer's playthrough was followed by the news of the second game and box bundle of the presentation, with a 429.99 CoD: AW machine, including a 1TB hard drive, hitting shops when the game releases.

After a brief outing for Turtle Rock's ambitious team shooter Evolve, Microsoft unveiled its first big news of the afternoon: Rise of the Tomb Raider, the forthcoming Lara Croft game from Square-Enix, will be a Xbox exclusive. Not timed, but lifetime. Phil Harrison, beaming, took the stage to make it clear that everything from here on in would also be exclusive to Microsoft's consoles.

Quantum Break was first up in that list, followed by Fable Legends and a new rollercoaster game from Frontier called ScreamRide - a game which shows considerably more bloodlust than Frontier's Rollercoaster Tycoon series, albeit bloodlust of a slapstick bent. Forza Horizon 2 was next, including a couple of exclusive high-performance cars in the shape of the Formula E and the Rolls Royce Wraith.

Ori and the Blind Forest made a short break in the AAA exclusives before Sunset Overdrive thundered onstage, rattling off colourful explosions and comedy evisceration before introducing another hardware bundle: a pristine white Xbox One for 349.99.

Finally, it was time for Microsoft's not-so-secret superweapon to be brought to bear. Halo took to the floor, not just in the form of the impressive looking Master Chief Collection and the brand new Halo V: Guardians, but also with the announcement of The Halo Channel, an apparent evolution of Halo Waypoint which will combine uploaded player clips, stats, lore and episodes of the brand new Halo Nightfall series. As part of the Halo channel, Microsoft also revealed a partnership with Twitch, undoubtedly putting some serious streaming kudos behind the ambitious project.

"Our goal today was to show you our continued commitment to making Xbox One the best place to play games this holiday," said Phil Spencer, before making one last announcement: pre-order pre-loading is coming to Xbox One, beginning with Forza Horizon 2.

Game on, Sony.

63 Comments

Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing

1,132 1,164 1.0
Popular Comment
More of a blow to the Tomb Raider franchise than to the console and PC competition, if you ask me. But as long as Microsoft picks up the tab, Square Enix might be happy not to wait as long as last time until the game reaches its pre-release projections.

Posted:2 months ago

#1

Helen Merete Simm Senior UI Artist, Codemasters

49 262 5.3
Popular Comment
Well maybe SE decided to not wait for sales of the game to disappoint and instead just accept a giant wad of cash from MS...

Posted:2 months ago

#2

Paolo Giunti Narrative Designer

36 73 2.0
I agree with Klaus, this seems like a short-sighted move on Squenix's part.
I really enjoyed the last Tomb Rider, it was actually a good game, and I was interested in the sequel. ...but not so much to buy new hardware for it.

Posted:2 months ago

#3

Tom Keresztes Programmer

683 335 0.5
If there is a company that can afford AAA platform exclusives, its Microsoft.

Posted:2 months ago

#4

Robert Ilott Build & CM Engineer, Criterion Games

25 49 2.0
Popular Comment
Really really disappointed about the Tomb Raider news. Totally want to play that game but I'm not prepared to buy an xbone for it. I'm also slightly surprised that Crystal Dynamics/Squeenix have gone that route. I guess Squeenix really need the cash or something...

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Robert Ilott on 12th August 2014 4:30pm

Posted:2 months ago

#5

Russ Cogman Senior Game Artist, Serious Games International

22 47 2.1
Popular Comment
Number of games that are exclusive to Xbox One that I want has just risen to 1. Guess I'll still pass.

Posted:2 months ago

#6

Chris Nash QA Engineer

47 23 0.5
Regarding profitability, it's cheaper to produce a game for one platform than for five, and Square-Enix will have revised their projections accordingly.

Posted:2 months ago

#7

Nelsun Rivera Mixed Media

15 14 0.9
As I suspected. MS will BUY exclusivity. Not as a benefit to its players but as a detriment to the PlayStation community. I have always hated exclusivity in any platform or service. I believe that all games should be available to all players regardless of allegiance. Only exclusivity should come from the actual platform holders themselves.

Posted:2 months ago

#8

Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing

1,132 1,164 1.0
There is no need to be disappointed, this is the logical consequence of the type of bullet point driven management decisions which made this industry what it is today; for better or worse.

They have an exclusive motion gimmick, we need an exclusive motion gimmick. They sell for 399, we need to sell for 399. They have an exclusive Tomb Raider clone, we need an exclusive Tomb Raider, repeat ad infinitum.

News such as this one are a good yardstick to measure, whether MS under new leadership is something else than before. For this round, I'd say they failed the test and are still stuck in a mode of thinking, where spending money to prevent third parties from making a competitor's platform more attractive is still considered good business sense. Samsung, Google and Apple are in a similar relationship when it comes to their products.

Posted:2 months ago

#9

Daniel Trezub QA Analyst, GameLoft

11 9 0.8
Several twitter reports say that reps from MS keep on saying dubious things about this so called exclusivity. Let's wait.

Posted:2 months ago

#10

Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.

2,270 2,439 1.1
Failed to generate profit with previous title across 150+ million install base. Now expects profitability with a new title across a 5+ million install base.

I'm starting to see now why SE has been in such dire straits lately.

Posted:2 months ago

#11

Nicholas Pantazis Senior Editor, VGChartz Ltd

1,020 1,467 1.4
Popular Comment
If Square Enix were thinking long-term instead of short term they'd see the damage this does to the franchise's potential as a pillar of their intellectual properties. But they aren't, and they went for easy early money. Tomb Raider will never take its place among the major franchises because of it. A sad end to a promising beginning.

Posted:2 months ago

#12

David Spender Lead Programmer

129 54 0.4
I am going to go out a limb here and say that the exclusivity will indeed be timed and not lifetime as stated in the article. Just a 'gut' feeling. Console exclusivity I can partially understand. But I have no idea why CD would alienate PC gamers as they've been the longest fans of the series. Such an odd decision - the cash from MS must have been really really good.

Posted:2 months ago

#13
I guess one can always watch it on YouTube :)

Posted:2 months ago

#14

Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys!

2,193 1,170 0.5
I guess this little lesson to be learned by developer and publisher will be part a new business class called "When Throwing Money at a Problem Creates a New and Bigger Problem 101."

Backlash on this is pretty wicked all over, so it will be interesting to see what's going to happen down the road if it stays an exclusive. I'd bet a PC version will at least get cooked up at some point, as I can't see Microsoft not wanting to make some of that money they spent back in case the XBO version under-performs.

Eh, we'll see...

Posted:2 months ago

#15
I enjoyed the Xbox Gamescom event, lots of decent titles to look forward to including some pretty decent exclusives.
But, it does make me wonder what some of the comments here would have been like if Tomb Raider were announced as Sony exclusive instead of an Xbox exclusive.

Posted:2 months ago

#16

Paolo Giunti Narrative Designer

36 73 2.0
But, it does make me wonder what some of the comments here would have been like if Tomb Raider were announced as Sony exclusive instead of an Xbox exclusive.
I confess that, personally, I would have been mildly less disappointed, but simply because the PS4 is already on my radar and such a move from Sony wouldn't have forced me to basically renounce from playing the game.
Although i would still find it silly for Squenix to give up the PC platform. Even if the PS4 is currently running stronger than the Xbox, I think that the exclusivity would hurt the game anyway.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Paolo Giunti on 12th August 2014 7:20pm

Posted:2 months ago

#17

Patrick Frost QA Project Monitor

400 196 0.5
I'm looking forward to SE bending the definition of "Exclusive" to a new extreme. Shove in some extra content and release Rise of the Tomb Raider Directors Cut a week after on all platforms apart from XBO and then charge those customers for DLC.

Surely that would be the most callously profit-driven approach right?

Posted:2 months ago

#18

Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys!

2,193 1,170 0.5
Pete, iId be equally annoyed if it was a PS4-only game (but at least it would probably run on the Vita as well. Er, via streaming)...

Posted:2 months ago

#19

Stephan Schwabe Multichannelmanagement, Telefonica

74 34 0.5
Excluding over 60% of your customers with this deal is the worst thing SE could do.. This company is now on the blacklist of many players... I just wait for CD saying with out microsoft the game would not be possible.. Waiting for Jim Stearling to pic up on this...

Posted:2 months ago

#20

Nicholas Pantazis Senior Editor, VGChartz Ltd

1,020 1,467 1.4
Stephen Tomb Raider sold over 7 million copies. 1.7 million of that was on Xbox 360. About 170K was on the Xbox One. We're not talking about excluding 60% of the consumer base, we're talking about excluding AT LEAST 75% of the consumer base. Xbox was by far the worst selling platform for the game in both current gen and last gen.

Posted:2 months ago

#21

Justin Biddle Software Developer

159 484 3.0
http://tombraider.tumblr.com/post/94529480860/rise-of-the-tomb-raider-update

An absolute masterpiece of undermining your own argument. They acknowledge that tomb raider's success is down to the support f the fans and then tries to justify why they are therefore ditching over half of them. I particularly like how they claim making the game exclusive will help make the brand one of the biggest in gaming. The very fact it's an exclusive will prevent that particularly as Xbox one has a much lower share of the market.

Predictably the comments are brutal in response.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Justin Biddle on 12th August 2014 9:43pm

Posted:2 months ago

#22

Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys!

2,193 1,170 0.5
I wonder if this will be another 180 spin after the fires burn long enough. Or at least a "Ha, oops... we meant TIMED exclusive, heh." deal.? We shall see. No one's getting away from this deal unscathed, it seems.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WpE_xMRiCLE

Posted:2 months ago

#23

Barrie Tingle Live Producer, Maxis

381 181 0.5
In the opposite camp to where everyone above in the comments appears to be, as an Xbox One owner, I'm looking forward to playing the new Tomb Raider.
PlayStation 4 has 0 exclusives I find myself wanting right now.

Posted:2 months ago

#24

Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing

1,132 1,164 1.0
I file it under clash PR culture with community culture. One tries to say "jump" in the firm belief the other will answer with "how high". Consumer event stage shows are not focus test groups, believe otherwise and this is the result.

So far it seems a loss for Microsoft, since the rest of their presentation is totally blurted out by the Tomb Raider business. Square Enix is in an even worse position, since they now have to deal with a community which used to be united in love for the franchise, but is now divided across platforms.

All of this over a game scheduled for 2015 no less. Expect MS to dial it back one notch and focus on pointing towards other games, while Square Enix will have to wonder how to pick up the pieces from here. Hardly a morale boost for the development team.

Posted:2 months ago

#25

Anastasios Hatzis Community Manager

15 40 2.7
But, it does make me wonder what some of the comments here would have been like if Tomb Raider were announced as Sony exclusive instead of an Xbox exclusive.
As a PS4 owner, I would be disappointed if Sony would waste money on the sole purpose to harm PC and XBox gamers, rather than invest the same money into a new exclusive franchise, that PS4 owners could enjoy additionally to Tomb Raider.

Posted:2 months ago

#26

Barrie Tingle Live Producer, Maxis

381 181 0.5
I'm wondering if Microsoft did it to try and have a title that will go head to head with Uncharted as Xbox doesn't really have a franchise like that of its own.

While I comment on the fact I will play it on my Xbox, it is a sorry state where previous multi-platform games turn exclusive for any reason. Games should have a chance to be enjoyed by the widest possible market on any platform of their choice. Still, what gamers want and what business does rarely align on these matters.

Posted:2 months ago

#27

Andreia Quinta Creative & People Photographer, Studio52 London

224 590 2.6
Well maybe SE decided to not wait for sales of the game to disappoint and instead just accept a giant wad of cash from MS...
Exactly! And as a huge TR fan, this is a very big blow for me, it's disgusting to the point of grasping for words. TR is not a system seller. This is the biggest "f*ck you" to fans I've seen in the past year or two, Thanks SE.

Posted:2 months ago

#28

Jeff Kleist Writer, Marketing, Licensing

355 214 0.6
When pressed, the language MS pr people keep,using is "exclusive for holiday 2015".

This means that they have bought 3-6 months of exclusivity.

With any exclusive title, you typically burn out it's usefulness as a system seller in 90-120'days. If people have no been pushed over the fence by that time, they're not goingto be. Those who own both consoles and want it will buy it, and you achieve 60-70% of lifetime sales.

In other words, people have learned that there are very few third party titles it's worth the money to lock doen to your console. Tomb Raider is one of the

Sony fanboys, especially ones based in Europe hate Microsoft with a blind fury. The guy who ranted Aps3 section at a major forum I used to help run threw a fit and vanished on us for four months when he found out that Final Fantasy was no longer exclusive. I'm not saying all, or even most are this way, just that this kind of behavior is nothing new,, and that they're also mad that after fifteen months, they finally got a punch in the nose.

Posted:2 months ago

#29
be curious to see which way TR goes after the next release...

Posted:2 months ago

#30

Paul Jace Merchandiser

936 1,412 1.5
As a PS4 owner, I would be disappointed if Sony would waste money on the sole purpose to harm PC and XBox gamers
But they wouldn't be doing it to harm anyone, they'd be doing it to give gamers another reason to own their system and thats exactly what Microsoft did: give gamers yet another reason to own an Xbox One. I thought they would have thrown any exclusive money towards keeping the Titanfall series only on Xbox(and PC) platforms this gen but a decision to add Tomb Raider to that list is perhaps an even better move.
And as a huge TR fan, this is a very big blow for me, it's disgusting to the point of grasping for words
You can still play it. You just need to buy an Xbox One. And if thats not your cup of tea you have two other options: play at a friends house or skip this one. Which brings us too...
be curious to see which way TR goes after the next release...
I'm pretty sure the next release will be multiplatform again. Last gen the 360 had an exclusive Splinter Cell(Conviction) which not nearly as many people whined about back then. But the next game in the series(Blacklist) went back to being multiplatform. I expect no less for Tomb Raider.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Paul Jace on 14th August 2014 8:25pm

Posted:2 months ago

#31

John Thomason Studying Computer Science, University of Minnesota

5 7 1.4
This news makes me not want to buy an Xbox One. It just feels wrong.

I do hope this game ends up having timed-exclusive PC and PS4 releases.

Posted:2 months ago

#32

Shane Sweeney Academic

392 400 1.0
This is of course a timed exclusive.

Even Mass Effect went multi-platform eventually.

Posted:2 months ago

#33

James Prendergast Research Chemist

735 432 0.6
Yeah, I don't see how people aren't reading the large portion of ambiguity in the released statements...

Posted:2 months ago

#34

Justin Shuard J - E translator

45 176 3.9
But they wouldn't be doing it to harm anyone, they'd be doing it to give gamers another reason to own their system and thats exactly what Microsoft did: give gamers yet another reason to own an Xbox One
But the game was coming to Xbox One anyway. It's not like Xbox One owners have gained another game to play, they've just arbitrarily blocked off other users' access to a game that was already coming out.

Posted:2 months ago

#35

Andrew Goodchild Studying development, Train2Game

1,254 420 0.3
If it is a lifetime exclusivity, not timed, and as the article said, everything going forward is, this suggests to me that something bigger may be going on. SE has had some financial challanges, could they be selling part of the company to MS? MS dropped the ball with first party AAA development in the later half of last gen, could they be making moves on Eidos?

Posted:2 months ago

#36

Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic

1,577 1,432 0.9
Nicholas said:
If Square Enix were thinking long-term instead of short term they'd see the damage this does to the franchise's potential as a pillar of their intellectual properties
and Andrew said:
SE has had some financial challanges, could they be selling part of the company to MS?
The only reason lifetime exclusivity works for the XBone and SquEnix is if the IP/dev team are going to MS. MS were missing an Uncharted-esque game. Now they have one, possibly forever.

That said, if the above scenario doesn't occur, I don't think it's lifetime exclusivity. One or two gens back, third-party exclusives made financial and technical sense, due to differing architecture. But now? XBone/PS4/PC are all essentially the same. If a AAA dev/pub can afford to develop for one, they can afford to develop for all three, and maximise potential sales and franchise reach.

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Morville O'Driscoll on 13th August 2014 11:19am

Posted:2 months ago

#37

Andreia Quinta Creative & People Photographer, Studio52 London

224 590 2.6
You can still play it. You just need to buy an Xbox One.
I would sooner buy a PS4 just out of spite, honestly.

Posted:2 months ago

#38

Kaz Niazi The Captain, Too Few Crew

1 0 0.0
Interesting that gamers will now have a hard choice between Uncharted and TR. Perhaps the whole point of the exercise is to polarise and in the process raise their profile?

In other thoughts...while they have obviously lost a good proportion of their audience, they've also removed their highest profile competition by changing their competitive landscape... (assuming that Uncharted is/was their main competition and that it's an either/or choice for gamers, which obviously it isn't or rather, wasn't...)

Will be interesting to see how this plays out...

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Kaz Niazi on 13th August 2014 11:31am

Posted:2 months ago

#39

Steven Hodgson Programmer, Code in Progress Ltd

84 122 1.5
Like PS4, at some point I will get an X1. That time will be when there are sufficient titles I want to play on them, I don't want a repeat of my WiiU that I bought for Bayonetta.

Posted:2 months ago

#40

Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic

1,577 1,432 0.9
they've also removed their highest profile competition by changing their competitive landscape
And wherefore PC in all this, I wonder? Perhaps lifetime console exclusive to MS, but coming to PC after 6 months? As you say, with no PS4 version SquEnix don't have to worry about comparisons against Uncharted. But PC doesn't currently have an Uncharted-style game, so it's easy pickings.

Whilst I can appreciate videogames are a business, from the consumer perspective it's things like this which I cannot stand. Unknown variables that affect consumer buying decisions, simply because of arcanely-worded press releases. How can anyone think this is a good path for the industry to go down?

Posted:2 months ago

#41

Stephan Schwabe Multichannelmanagement, Telefonica

74 34 0.5
@ Steven

I think you miss a point her. Bayonetta 2 would not be a game if Nintendo would have founded the game in the first place.
Tomb Raider is a game that is allready in development and it was clear, 3 month after the releas of Tomb Raider reboot, a new game will be made.

Posted:2 months ago

#42

Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing

1,132 1,164 1.0
As if fans of Uncharted would not buy Tomb Raider because they dismiss it on religious grounds and/or could not afford to buy it.

Resident Evil 4 is actually a good example in this context. Do the Capcom Five still ring a bell? if not, google it and apply it to this situation.

The anger I understand, Square Enix has build a relationship with their customers across platforms and is now asking their customers to switch platform. That's how this thing looks from a customer's point of view, Square Enix is meddling with a platform decision they should not meddle with.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Klaus Preisinger on 13th August 2014 12:31pm

Posted:2 months ago

#43
Honestly, if they decided to not Release on PC, and only release on one console, regardless of weather I owned that console I wouldn't buy the game, and I don't yet own an Xbox One yet, I bought a PS4 first, and am getting a new pc prior to picking up a Xbox One, frankly I've never been a fan of platform exclusives, sure companies feel its a way to differentiate ones hardware and create an environment where consumers "must have" their product's, but I feel Valve has the right of it with no platform exclusives.

Differentiate yourself with unique features, not forcing people to use your platform just for enjoying series they've enjoyed in the past, sure PS4 and Xbox One both encourage such things, and not that many complain certainly in the last console gen where many owned both for most of it, but EA Origin has the same thing, and you'd be hard pressed to find anyone who likes that.

EA made a concious decision rather than make a service that competes in quality(given valve doesn't spam me every time I launch steam so I have to see an advert before I can access the products I pay for), value(poor and sporadic sales in comparison with valve) and ease of access(no official linux support, inferior other features) with steam they would force people to buy into their new service by making it platform exclusive, this is the kinda of anti-competitive crud that has harmed uptake of digital distribution, until the idea of a platform exclusive becomes severely frowned upon, regardless of who's doing it, then these kind of thrust upon consumer services will be commonplace, indeed the fact that all publishers charge more not less for digital copies is also not helping the industry.

Ironcally prior to them forcing people to use Origin I had already bought a few EA titles via the early EA digital sales product (EADM) and had a far more positive view of them, however once they forced their products off Steam and onto Origin I have only bought origin exclusives and avoid every other product on the platform like the plague.

The Problem here is not just Microsoft managing to tempt Square Enix to throw their customers under the bus, in return for a preferential financial situation for themselves offered by MS, the problem is whole concept of platform exclusives inevitably will lead to these kind of situations, the average investor is greedy, hell that word pretty much defines what an investor is, codified greed, as long as companies habitually tempt other companies financially then the investor's involved will encourage leadership to engage in platform exclusives where there is a preferential financial arrangement in place, if consumers want to end these practises their going to have to do something drastic like punitively end purchases of titles that engage in it, regardless of weather they fall into a category that can access it, if no one buys them at all, it will become financially untenable, a little bit of mild rumbling every time a company makes something exclusive is going to have no effect.

Still I strongly suspect this means only console exclusive, so a PC version is still on the cards, which still sucks for the well majority of the latest market that own a PS4 and have no short term Xbox One buying plan's.

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Alexander McConnell on 13th August 2014 1:15pm

Posted:2 months ago

#44

Nick Wofford Hobbyist

180 190 1.1
Business tip for Sony: Don't poke the billion dollar gorilla in the room.

Personally, I suspect that Square's asking price wasn't as high as people think. We all know that 3rd party relationships can look a bit like real life ones. There's the catty talk, the backhanded comments, and the betrayals. How did Sony not see this coming? They had a long-time partner in Square, and they decide to release their biggest franchise against Tomb Raider, which is even in the same genre? If I was Square, I'd go exclusive for free just to show that they can. And when the next TR game goes back to multiplat, Sony will bend over backwards to help Square with development, marketing, and release.

Posted:2 months ago

#45

Jeff Kleist Writer, Marketing, Licensing

355 214 0.6
@Morville exclusivity never includes the PC being locked out, as there is no point, and no royalties. It's about locking out the direct competition. Delayed PC versions are about developer resources, not deals.

Posted:2 months ago

#46

Jeff Kleist Writer, Marketing, Licensing

355 214 0.6
@Nick

I don't think as queens is in quite that much of a financial situation to go waving their butt around. Because they can, no. Because they paid us, yes.

@Alexander features are important, but the are secondary to exclusives. I was a Sega guy from the time I bought a Master System with my paper route money when I was ten. I bought a PlayStation launch day because the games were far superior to Saturn, and I hugged my Dreamcast until it died an untimely death. Features are not enough to push non-power users without a truly killer app. Exclusive Netflix: killer app, but I don't see anything right now that fits that bill. Microsoft is certainly better at the end user experience last ten, something they will probably over time pull ahead on again. But exclusive games, after price, as Sony learned last gen, and Microsoft learned this one, are what makes people fall one way or the other. $399 sold a pile of PS4s last Christmas.

@Christian it's fanboy fury. Many of these were the same people hopping up and down screaming about how Kinect was spying on them, and how Microsoft was taking their rights away, even though they never intended to buy the thing, and happily live under a far more oppressive and restricted regime known as Steam. It's decades of hating Microsoft, deserved or not, tribal loyalty, and as usual, knee jerk reactions without reading or thinking. That and frighten months of being bullying top dog who got punched in the nose

Posted:2 months ago

#47

Paul Shirley Programmers

178 150 0.8
XBone exclusive OR XBox exclusive? There's wriggle room in there to launch on PC if MS feel like another attempt on the PC gaming world, this time under the XBox brand. With Steambox threatening them it must be a temptation. With XB1 essentially a low end PC running Win8 Modern porting games is pretty easy.

Posted:2 months ago

#48

Nick Wofford Hobbyist

180 190 1.1
Jeff, the "punched in the nose" comment is spot on. MS (better late than never) managed a pretty huge blow on Sony, and their fanbase is just reeling from it. It'll blow over in no time.

To be honest, I'm increasingly suspicious that MS may be trying to buy either CD or hell, even Square. CD has pretty much confirmed that this is never coming to PS4, but MS hasn't. It's usually the other way around. The only thing I can make of that is that the deal isn't done, and MS doesn't want to commit in public until the deal is finished. Naturally, purchasing CD would mean dealing with Square, so CD's part is done. Therefore, they can comment at their leisure because no further input from them is needed.

edit: @Paul
I definitely see it coming to PC. Phil Spencer seems really keen on supporting Windows. Plus, I'm still holding out for a firmware update that might let me dual-boot SteamOS on an Xbox One :)

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Nick Wofford on 13th August 2014 2:04pm

Posted:2 months ago

#49

Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.

2,270 2,439 1.1
While there is certainly a long history of paid for timed and lifetime exclusives, what makes this one stand out is the context of the previous title. Even at ~7 million sold, SE was openly stating the game failed to generate profit. And here they are reducing their potential install base by a huge proportion. They also stated if was the support of the fans that eventually helped push the previous Tomb Raider game into profitability and then have the audacity to restrict access to a majority of the fans.

This isn't about the business practice of time or lifetime of exclusivity. It's about the circumstances this series has recently gone through and the mind boggling corporate mentality the series now resides in.

Had the previous Tomb Raider game not had the failed profit factor as a back story to work with, this exclusivity deal would hardly make the news it has.

Posted:2 months ago

#51

Jeff Kleist Writer, Marketing, Licensing

355 214 0.6
Christian is right, I seriously doubt that Square would agree to a merger or acquisition by Microsoft. A non-Japanese company carries a lot of baggage, and if they're not named Disney or Apple, , there's tremendous loss of face involved. They would literally lash themselves to the mast and go down in more cases than not. Ejidos has been very good for plugging financial holes, and more importantly, they taught Square, and others, that games can be profitable if you keep plugging away at it, and have a good product like Tr or Sleeping Dogs. It's a valuable lesson for a lot of MBA types who only see three months ahead. Both games are profitable, remastered, and getting sequels. And isn't that what the games business is about.,

Posted:2 months ago

#52

Nick Wofford Hobbyist

180 190 1.1
Phil's full quote makes it pretty clear that TR2 is going to the PC eventually, and that's it. It's basically exactly like Dead Rising 3 or Splinter Cell: Conviction. He also makes it clear that they aren't buying the IP from Square either.

Posted:2 months ago

#53
Apparently this TR2 exclusivity is not entirely true. Turns out it's a timed exclusive. Just conveniently chosen words.

Microsoft is using the term "Exclusive" very loosely these days.

I like Sony's approach better. "It will make its console debut on PS4". Simple.

Edited 3 times. Last edit by Sonat Dennis Ozturk on 13th August 2014 3:54pm

Posted:2 months ago

#54

Justin Biddle Software Developer

159 484 3.0
Am I over reading Spencer's comments or does he sound a little terse and uncomfortable. Was he really expecting the reaction to be "well I will have to get an Xbox one now" rather than the vicious backlash which actually occurred. If so he was incredibly naive.

Posted:2 months ago

#55

Jeff Kleist Writer, Marketing, Licensing

355 214 0.6
I think it's more that people are just taking the important parts out. Or he's pissed that people are piling in this and not the other stuff they showed

Personally I'm really hoping for some perverse achievements in that roller coaster death simulator

Posted:2 months ago

#56

Justin Biddle Software Developer

159 484 3.0
And there in lies microsoft's problem. Everyone is talking about tomb raider but not how they hoped. And it has eclipsed all the other promising announcements they made. In terms of marketing this has been well and truly fumbled.

Posted:2 months ago

#57

Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic

1,577 1,432 0.9
It seems so... odd. There's been timed exclusives before, so why not announce it as such. People would be annoyed, but not this much. "Play it 6 months before the competitors can" pretty much writes itself.

But then, isn't this MS's XBox problem in a nutshell? Good (or at least, not-bad) things, fumbled horrendously.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Morville O'Driscoll on 13th August 2014 9:36pm

Posted:2 months ago

#58

Justin Biddle Software Developer

159 484 3.0
I think Microsoft misjudged it. They thought TR fans would decide they needed to switch to xbox (albeit with some grumbling). I think they did not expect outrage and people deciding to boycott the franchise. I don't think Square Enix expected the level of anger either. I feel slightly sorry for CD who I would be surprised if they had much of a say in the matter and yet are bearing the brunt of this. All speculations but to me it seems a likely explanation.

Posted:2 months ago

#59

Paul Jace Merchandiser

936 1,412 1.5
But the game was coming to Xbox One anyway. It's not like Xbox One owners have gained another game to play, they've just arbitrarily blocked off other users' access to a game that was already coming out.
The latest word is that it's timed-exclusive, which means that nobody is really blocked off from permanent access. It just means that other platforms will have to wait a bit longer before they get their chance to play it. Again, this wasn't done to purposely harm anybody and Microsoft see's this as "own an Xbox One and you get to play Tomb Raider first" scenario. Like I said, they are just giving gamers more reasons to own their system. It's not like Sony doesn't do the same thing(as an example the PS3/PS4 Destiny dlc exclusive content is exclusive for atleast a year before being allowed to come to other platforms).
I would sooner buy a PS4 just out of spite, honestly.
So I take it you're a PC gamer. Well since this is only suppose to be timed exclusive you should get to eventually play it on your platform of choice as well.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Paul Jace on 14th August 2014 8:23pm

Posted:2 months ago

#60

Justin Biddle Software Developer

159 484 3.0
The impression I've got by the comments of the enraged TR community is that if MS hoped the chance to get TR first would make them buy an xbox they are rather mistaken

Posted:2 months ago

#61

Steven Hodgson Programmer, Code in Progress Ltd

84 122 1.5
@ Stephan

Posted:2 months ago

#62

Christian Slater DevilBliss Games Consultancy

26 45 1.7
"Rise of the Tomb Raider"

Surely the 'Rise of' prefix has been deeply played out by now?

Posted:2 months ago

#63

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