Gamescom 2014 over in Cologne, Germany saw big names in the gaming industry like Microsoft and Sony talk about their games and announce some new stuff. Both had great conferences this year, but Microsoft had something up their sleeve, the one thing that caught the attention of everyone that tuned in online or attended the show personally – Rise of the Tomb Raider being exclusive to Xbox One.
“Coming Holiday 2015, Exclusively on Xbox”, this made everyone, including some Xbox owners upset, and to a degree, it’s understandable. Tomb Raider has always been a multi-platform title and then a sudden announcement of exclusivity had PlayStation and PC owners ready to grab their torches and pitchforks, ready to boycott the newest Tomb Raider. I on the other hand believed that this was a smart move on Microsoft’s part; having an already well-established and well known action series be only on your console is just a good idea in a business perspective. Microsoft doesn’t have an action/adventure IP all to their own like Sony does with Uncharted, and now with this announcement, they have one in Rise of the Tomb Raider – at least for a while.
Phil Spencer, the head of Microsoft’s Xbox division, made another announcement later on the week to clarify that Rise of the Tomb Raider is, in fact, a timed exclusive. Mr. Spencer mentioned the details about the deal that they made with Square Enix, saying that he in no way bought the exclusivity or IP, and that there is an obvious “duration” for their deal. Where it ends up and what is done with Rise of the Tomb Raider is all up to Square Enix.
While it cushioned that blow that many gamers felt, it lessened the punching power that this news originally had. Regardless of now being a timed exclusive, this still works in Microsoft’s favor, as they still have an answer to Uncharted which has also been slated for 2015.
In the end, Rise of the Tomb Raider will still make its way to PlayStation and PC, but for how long it will take to get there is still unknown. For now, the only solid bit of information that we have is that it will be a timed exclusive for Xbox platforms.