The Tomb Raider franchise has waned in papularity since it’s heyday in the late 90s. Tomb Raider II saw refinement of what fans loved of the original and sold more than any other Tomb Raider title. Little did Eidos know that, only two titles into a eight game run, the game had reached its peak.
The series has stagnated and lost much of its popularity. It has now joined the Crash Bandicoots, Sonic the Hedgehogs and Spyro the Dragons of the world as former console heavyweights that are shells of their former selves. The last installment of the series, Tomb Raider: Underworld, came in about half a million units short of expectations and has left Eidos to look in the mirror wondering what to do with their biggest star.
The Times Online spoke with Eidos Chief Financial Officer Robert Brent who spoke about how Eidos would have to “look at everything” as they moved forward with the next game. Brent also pointed to the fact that sales in the American market were considerably lower than expected saying:
“Europe was fine, but America was not as anticipated. You would normally expect Tomb Raider sales to be split half and half between Europe and North America, but this time America was considerably below that.”
Brent went on to say that the Tomb Raider series would probably go in a more female-friendly direction as a result.
While I can appreciate that Eidos wants to take the series in a direction that is more realistic and mature, I can’t believe that they don’t think selling a game that is all boob physics, all the time helped them greatly, even when the game was good. Refreshing the gameplay and evolving instead of refining is what the game needs to become a real player in a world that has Uncharted and host of other great 3rd person action games.
Do you think a “female-friendly” Lara Croft is needed for a resurgence with Tomb Raider or has the series best days already passed it by?