The console wars have created so many gimmicks over the years and because of them, tactics like first-party exclusives, DLC exclusives and of course timed exclusives have infested our home console experiences. With the timed exclusive Rise of the Tomb Raider releasing from its Xbox-only bonds this October, will PlayStation owners still be excited for this year-old title?
Rise of the Tomb Raider is the sequel to the hit franchise reboot simply entitled Tomb Raider, which acted as a reconstruction for Lara Croft’s origins. With a semi-realistic setting, gamers and long-time fans alike were able to see the origin story of a more grounded and less sexualized version of the iconic character. The reboot title was released in March 2013 and released for all platforms (without any timed releases).
Now, I’m not entirely sure on what kind of backdoor deals go down between companies when negotiating a console exclusive timed release, so I could be completely out of the ball park here, but please bear with me. Rise of the Tomb Raider’s sales have only hurt themselves due to this year-long exclusivity. The reason being because it’s already been out for a year, many people who weren’t totally into the game but still would have casually played through it have either watched a playthough on sites like YouTube and Twitch, have turned to Uncharted 4 to fill their Indiana Jones lust or have lost interest in the series all together due to newer and quite frankly, bigger releases on the way.
When Rise of the Tomb Raider first released last November, Uncharted 4 was still in development and action/adventure junkies would have gladly chewed on Rise of the Tomb Raider up until Uncharted 4 was released on the PlayStation 4. Now that the game has been released upon the world, PlayStation 4 owners who are getting the best of both action/adventure worlds might have already had their fill (excluding diehard Tomb Raider fans of course.) Even more bad news for the year-old game, they decided to launch the title in October of all months! October is the bread and butter of the 2016 catalogue, with a tsunami of AAA games flooding the store shelves Rise of the Tomb Raider faces the same danger of irrelevancy as Batman Return to Arkham.
Why the heck would you choose October of all months to release this port? Many people have already forgotten about the game altogether and to be honest the exclusivity didn’t bother me one bit due to the release of games like Shovel Knight, Call of Duty: Black Ops 3, Fallout 4, Star Wars Battlefront, Beyond: Two Souls and Bloodborne: The Old Hunters DLC. Personally, I would have probably felt the year-long cold shoulder of Rise of the Tomb Raider if not for the seven other releases, but because we live in a universe where all these games launched throughout November 2015, (among many other titles) it’s easy to forget about Lara.
Waiting a bit longer for Rise of the Tomb Raider overall was quite ideal for me. Not only did I have more time to spend on titles I would have skipped over for it when it first released but now, as a PlayStation 4 owner, all the bugs and glitches that may have affected the game during its initial launch will most likely be ironed out for its seconded release this October. Although I am still unsure if I’m willing to knock off another game on my list in the month of October to play through a year-old game, so it seems that once again Rise of the Tomb Raider will have to wait its turn before entering my disc tray.