Tomb Raider was once the poster child for AAA game budgets gone wild. It sold millions of copies out of the gate, scored solid critical praise across the charts, and yet it still came up short of original expectations, which Square Enix had forecast at five-to-six million, causing its publisher financial chaos.
That was 2013, but now is 2014. Thanks to the release of the Definitive Edition on next-gen consoles and strong PC sales through Steam, Tomb Raider has turned around its poor fortunes and is just shy of finally exceeding Square Enix’s original expectations. Square Enix’s Head of Studios Darrell Gallagher has updated the official Tomb Raider Tumblr saying that the game will cross the six million mark before the end of the month.
“By the end of this month we will surpass 6 million units for our Tomb Raider reboot, and, having achieved profitability back in 2013 Tomb Raider has exceeded profit expectations and continues to make significant contributions to our overall financial performance.”
Six million sales make it the most successful game in the series’ long history. I wasn’t the biggest fan of the 2013 Tomb Raider reboot, but it is nice to see that slow burns still exist in this video game world. Too often do we believe something is a failure because it doesn’t set blinding records right out of the gate, but when a game has positive praise, good word of mouth, and a strong fanbase, success stories like these remind you that good games will still bubble to the surface.
Patience can be a key to success, and hopefully Square Enix can learn this important lesson from the Western video game market and improve its tactics.