Lara Croft can tackle a lot of things, but can she take on Bethesda?
Rise of the Tomb Raider was announced to be headed to its new exclusive home (at least for now) of Xbox on November 10. The date is picture-perfect for a holiday release, arriving on retail shelves just before Black Friday and the true beginning of the shopping season.
Yet, the one problem Lara might not be able to take down this time isn’t just a deadly trap or a giant snowstorm, but a little game titled Fallout 4 – which is set to arrive the exact same day.
Going into E3, gamers were already excited for Fallout 4 – partially due to the large reveal just a few weeks before the trade show, and partially because they have been waiting for a chance to return to Bethesda’s take on an open world for at least five or more years. Since the end of E3, many gamers and websites selected Fallout 4 as their Game of the Show (including Gamespresso) and the game ultimately won E3’s Game of the Show as well.
In an already heavily-packed holiday season where money may be tight by the time November rolls around, will Rise of the Tomb Raider and Lara Croft be hurt by releasing the same day as Fallout 4?
Tomb Raider is already facing a launch that will reach a smaller audience since becoming a timed exclusive to Xbox One and 360 consoles. Pair this with the hype that Fallout 4 has reached for many players, and things may not end up so well for the action-adventure game sales wise.
Sure, some players may plan to pick up both copies, play the smaller, more linear Rise of the Tomb Raider, and then dive into Fallout 4 for the rest of the winter, but a larger number of players may solely choose Fallout 4, and plan to play it for the next 400 hours, ultimately looking right past Tomb Raider. If you can only choose one or two games during this season, would you not pick the one that offers a huge amount to do for your value (this is solely based on previous Bethesda games).
The most interesting part of the November 10 debate is that Microsoft had to have known that Fallout 4 was coming on that day, as Bethesda and director Todd Howard were included as a decent portion of the Xbox E3 conference, discussing mods and the inclusion of Fallout 3 as a preorder through Xbox One only. Therefore, the company would probably have been aware of when Fallout was arriving. Perhaps whatever exclusivity deal Microsoft has with Crystal Dynamics had this release date planned well in advanced and is ultimately unchangeable.
Fallout 4 is sure to sell millions upon millions of copies – even if just preorders seem to be any indication. Gamers are clearly keen to explore another Bethesda game. Rise of the Tomb Raider should move in either direction, if possible, and get out of the way of the juggernaut that Fallout is certain to be.