Annual franchises are something we see quite often in video games. Take a look at the fall lineup of games each year and you’ll see quite a few there. While some may place a negative connotation on yearly brands, those names are the backbone of video games’ massive revenue base.
Tomb Raider released back in 2013 and it was followed by the Definitive Edition in 2014. Last year, Rise of the Tomb Raider debuted and today, its 20th Anniversary self has launched. While it isn’t exactly four new games in four years, Tomb Raider has seen a release of some kind each of the past four years.
This fact begs the question of could Tomb Raider be a successful yearly franchise? Crystal Dynamics’ Chris Johnston spoke with We Write Things about the possibility of Tomb Raider going yearly and the potential cost of doing that.
“[The brand] is in great shape. If you stay out of the spotlight for too long, players can forget about you. There are so many great games out there and I think fans are really excited about these things we are doing. We have some exciting new hardware coming out and so it’s a time to innovate and experiment with it.
“Yeah, as long as it has the experience we want to deliver. Rise of the Tomb Raider was about giving players a deep experience with storytelling. When you go into a yearly release, there are some sacrifices you have to make to accommodate that. In a perfect world and if we had unlimited resources, I’m sure we could do it. Again though, it takes a lot of time and care to make video games, especially one as immersive as ours,” Johnston said.
Tomb Raider and Rise of the Tomb Raider were stellar releases, and the same will hopefully be said about future iterations. Crystal Dynamics has hit their stride with the brand and both of the aforementioned games were easy Game of the Year candidates for their respective years.
With releases coming in 2013 and 2015, could we see the next iteration debut in 2017? It remains to be seen when Crystal Dynamics and Square Enix will deliver the next installment, however, Rise of the Tomb Raider is available now on PS4, Xbox One PC and Xbox 360. Stick around here at We Write Things for more on the series.