New Lara Croft game won’t be playable on PS4 or PC any time soon.
Do you remember last June, when Sony and Microsoft showed off their next-gen consoles, and gamers took opposing sides based on which hardware looked better, and which had the better game incentives, and which had the better casual setup?
Remember when the game franchises started getting divvied up between the two, and people were forced to make their final decisions on which console to opt for – that is, if the final decision wasn’t both?
Well, this is a bit of a bummer for anyone who thought that the resurgence of gaming icon Lara Croft was good news for both sides of the next-gen divide, as a pre-Gamescom announcement from Crystal Dynamics head honcho Darrell Gallagher confirmed that next winter’s Rise of the Tomb Raider will be an XBox exclusive.
It isn’t known at this time if the game will be launched for both XBox One and the XBox 360, but it’s certainly bad news for any gamer who went with the PS4 this time around. The first in the rebooted series of Tomb Raider games has sold over 6.5 million copies to date – that’s for XBox, Playstation and PC, mind – and was met with great critical success too.
Writing on the official Tomb Raider Tumblr blog (Tomblr?), Gallagher clarified the decision.
“Our friends at Microsoft have always seen huge potential in Tomb Raider and have believed in our vision since our first unveil with them on their stage at E3 2011. We know they will get behind this game more than any support we have had from them in the past – we believe this will be a step to really forging the Tomb Raider brand as one of the biggest in gaming, with the help, belief and backing of a major partner like Microsoft.
This doesn’t mean that we’re walking away from our fans who only play on PlayStation or on PC. Those are great systems, with great partners, and amazing communities. We have Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris coming to those platforms this December, and Tomb Raider: The Definitive Edition is available on PS4.”
Offering your support to a fledgling developer in return for console exclusivity is one thing, but having sold a million copies in 48 hours, does a franchise as phenomenally popular as Tomb Raider really need that extra support? I can’t help but feel the Playstationers are getting a raw deal here. Getting the sequel to a Lara Croft game whose dialogue and plot were by some accounts “cheesy and forgettable” [Gamespot] and “the weakest parts” of the game [IGN] isn’t going to satisfy the fans who were hooked on Croft’s character development in the proper reboot.
It could be that at some point down the line, Sony will be able to release Rise to their consoles, as the definition of ‘exclusive’ hasn’t yet been made public – but with the console war still raging on, XBox could be on their way to closing the gap with the news that Canon Lara is for Microsoft players’ eyes only.