Reason for Tomb Raider’s inadequate Sales Performance Revealed

Square Enix have released their financial statements and it’s somewhat baffling looking at their sales targets for certain games.

They were earlier disappointed for shipping only 3.4 million copies of Tomb Raider, and normally, other games would be considered a massive success if they shipped that much. So why was Square Enix disappointed?

Turns out they expected the game to ship 5 to 6 million copies. Those are ludicrous sales targets for a franchise that was on a massive decline. The game did, however, sell really well in the UK with 1 million sales in less than 48 hours.

Even more baffling is the fact that they had originally targeted 4.5 to 5 million shipments for Hitman: Absolution, and ended up shipping 3.6 million.

Why were these games made with such a massive budget that only 5 million sales would make ? I guess maybe that’s one of the reasons why their CEO resigned?

They also wanted to ship 2 to 2.5 million copies of Sleeping Dogs but could only manage 1.75 million, but I guess this one is a bit realistic.

Via Square Enix financials.

  • Xino

    they are bloody greedy!
    how can you bloody expect to ship 5-6m for Tomb Raider? is Tomb Raider COD? is it Battfield? is it a AAA game?
    how heavily was it marketed? was there enough advert on tv?

    it’s because they spent more money developing the game that’s why they needed 5-6mil units:/

    • Zach

      They were too ambitious with a new IP, a reboot, and a moderately popular series. All sold exceptionally well, but Square Enix was just hoping for too much when they set the budgets for these games.

  • BobsYurUncle

    should have cut out multiplayer. nobody plays that.

    • Zach

      They made more money off the multiplayer believe it or not. While you or I may not want it, the casual consumer sees it and automatically thinks “awesome, more bang for my buck”. Who cares if it’s “generic” or an “uncharted rip-off”, it’s still fun, and if your mind is set on not playing it because you’re convinced that’s the reason it did bad and you’re a hipster, fine by me.

      • oo7PorscheMGS

        It’s not a reason it “did bad” .. it IS a reason why the game cost so much for them to make and why they expect the game to sell so much before they can call it a “success”. Think a little before you type ;) They’re greedy and their greed is biting them in their own a$$e$.

        • Zach

          Buddy, you think it was the multiplayer that cost them? You take an environment from the single-player, you play around with it, add multiple people, classes, whatever. Probably cost them 1/20th of the total game cost. The single player is what costs the most. The guys who do Call of Duty, they spend the most money every year on the SINGLE PLAYER. Look it up. Do some research before you type, thanks ;)

          • oo7PorscheMGS

            “buddy” I follow the game industry daily.. I didn’t say the multiplayer was the ONLY thing that cost them $$$…. but I did say that they could have cut it….. learn how to read instead of spending your time talking mindless trash. It DOES cost a lot of money to produce an online mode by the way, especially if it’s the first time a game like Tomb Raider has had online. It takes programming / testing / lots of time to get it to work right. The reason it is “cheap” for COD is because they have done it before… but it still costs a lot… do some of your own research…. “thanks” ;)

          • Zach

            I never said it was cheap, I said it was cheap in COMPARISON to the singleplayer. The singleplayer is what made that game cost money. I absolutely love this, please keep it up.

          • oo7PorscheMGS

            So if they cut the multiplayer that wouldn’t have stripped the budget down???? It would have helped…! And that would have been an EASY mode to take out, since the mode is being TRASHED by reviewers… it was obviously of no value to the game. It IS safe to say that most gamers bought tomb raider for the 1 player, they don’t care about the “online” on the back of the box which most of them probably won’t even notice when they see the gamebox.. (I wouldn’t have even known Tomb Raider HAD online if I didn’t see one of the behind the scenes videos of the making of TR on youtube…and I follow gaming a lot… the online wasn’t focused on at all..) People know what to expect from Tomb Raider and don’t look up info about it besides a quick review maybe… they know it’s a one player adventure and thats what they come to it for. Online is the FIRST thing they should have cut if they really cared about budget + the game.

          • Zach

            But here’s why they add it:

            When you finish Bioshock Infinite as someone who plays game’s every once in a while, what are you going to do with it? Let it sit on your shelf, or use it to save you some money on your next game purchase by trading it in to somewhere like Gamestop? Now by all means, I’m not implying that Bioshock Infinite should have multiplayer, but now when casual gamers finish this game they have no reason to keep it unless they like having a collection or want to play through it again. Having multiplayer in a game will save some people from trading it in, ergo more people buying the game new and not used. I’m 99.9% certain that’s why they have multiplayer, so in the end they are actually making more money having it in there, especially when you consider DLC.

  • oo7PorscheMGS

    I love tomb raider, but not every gamer is willing to spend $60 on a game that is 12 hours and very linear… I can wait. Plenty of great games. Oh and your budget doesn’t need to be so huge just to sell a game………….. people play for great gameplay, not the most amazing graphics “ever”. Cut down on the costs and raise UP the LENGTH of the game and the QUALITY of the game. Cut out the online that not even the biggest tomb raider fan likes. Do something original instead of putting in a BORING online mode just because you want more money….. stop being greedy and start being CREATIVE… you might just sell more and get even better reviews ;) Look at BioShock Infinite… surely didn’t need online for that game to get perfect reviews, did it?????? Too many developers these days are so busy marketing their game and MAKING it marketable and “good looking” that they forget to FOCUS on the creative side of the game first. Oh and they also forget that just because they make a game look all shiny and marketable, doesn’t mean that 5+ MILLION people are going to buy it……. get a little more realistic already, and stop KILLING your own franchises / the game industry. Return to CREATIVITY instead of being greedy businessmen that only care about making the most money……….

    • Zach

      Yet ~5+ million people will have bought this game come the end of 2013.

      • oo7PorscheMGS

        yet the game makers themselves are saying the game isn’t selling enough for them… hence the reason we’re here talking about this game now… ;) The point isn’t that the game is selling millions (we KNOW that) …the point is that some game developers are spending so much money that they NEED a game to sell 5+ million or else it’s a “failure”… which is crazy and will probably lead to these companies losing a lot of money and killing franchises because they didn’t know how to manage them without throwing huge budgets at everything as if huge budgets automatically make great games.

        • Zach

          You’re so intelligent, you probably think EA and Activision are killing the industry and that anyone who listens to JB or buys an iPhone is stupid. You’re a common, misguided internet-er. Typical

          • oo7PorscheMGS

            Sounds like you’re upset I gave you some logic to think about… it’s ok to be wrong sometimes man… relax. No need to change the subject and act like a loser just because you are wrong. Man up.

          • oo7PorscheMGS

            and just to show you who is “misguided” since you like changing the subject.. how about I own you on another subject as well ;) EA was voted the “worst company in America” …if you don’t think they are the LEADING cause the industry is in trouble, then you’re as big of an idiot that you’ve already shown you are in this thread.

          • Guest

  • Christopher Bosak

    I think it’s also cause Square-Enix has become so concerned about making $$$ instead of taking risks and Innovating Tomb Raider.

    I remember as a kid of the 90’s Games were Far better and have more creative ideas poured into them. They didn’t need online they were great as they are.Make fun games with creative design, and game mechanics and then the $$$ will flow in. Make Good Games that’s what made “SQUARESOFT” back then so GREAT!!!!

    • Zach

      Because Sleeping Dogs wasn’t a risk

  • Zach

    Do you realize how many people like to hate on EA? Why? Because they feel if EA does something they don’t like, then EA is wrong and deserves to be hated on. They admitted to making mistakes in the past, and most recently the disastrous SimCity launch, but to vote EA a worse company than a company like BoA? Idiocy at it’s finest. You’re just a bandwagon jumper buddy, get over it. Micro transactions won’t ruin the industry, and frankly, as much as you or anyone else may hate it, people are buying them, and EA will continue to implement them. The only way to effectively tell a publisher you don’t like something is with your wallet.

    • oo7PorscheMGS

      lol defending EA. You’re the one who’s the idiot, obviously. There are MANY reasons they are voted THE WORST COMPANY IN THE WORLD. Get a clue. Just like there are MANY reasons Tomb Raider cost so much. They should drop the budget and EA should stop the Bull$h_it ;)

      • Zach

        So, they’re voted the “WORST COMPANY IN THE WORLD” because… they messed up a launch, added an option for players to pay for a different experience in the form of microtransactions, and… what? Them being so greedy that it’s killing the industry? Buying out smaller companies to shut them down?

        Look, I know EA is no Saint of a company, but they’re not as bad as everyone likes to say. Yes, that whole buying out small developers to shut em down is bad, but it’s the original owner who sold it to them in the first place, he/she probably knew what was going to happen to the staff afterwards.

        I don’t really like the Microtransactions either, but all we as consumers have to do to tell them we don’t like it is not buy it. It’s really that simple.

        And Tomb Raider’s budget? Definitely should have been lower, that’s why I said Square was just too ambitious, but adding in multiplayer wasn’t the reason it “flopped”.

        We good? ;)

  • Ubbe

    I have played through half the game and have become more and more disappointed along the way. One of the things that bothers me most is that aircrafts take damage from lightning. Ever heard of Faraday’s cages anyone? The same thing that happens when a car is hit by lightning happens to a plane: Exactly nothing. The other main thing is: How do you feed the army of enemies? Not from resources on such a small island. Or maybe the “Sun queen” gives the enemies food?

    Also, to call the script innovative is just crap. Anyone who has seen a few action movies or played a few action games the last 20 years have seen the things happening in Tomb raider over and over again. How many times haven’t you lost your weapons and equipment in a game to retrieve them later? How many times haven’t you had to rescue your friends? How many times have you met a leader almost impossible to kill, or hordes of enemies attacking you all the time?

    The graphics is excellent though, I’ll have to give them that. But there are to many bugs for me. I am quitting Tomb Raider now despite the money I paid for it.