Ever wondered how much it would cost to keep a gaming legend exclusive to your platform? In the case of Lara Croft, it's a nice round number - $100 million to be exact.
It isn't often that the financial side of exclusivity deals are revealed to the public. Sometimes they are, sometimes they're not, sometimes they come to light in a lawsuit, sometimes they appear in an entirely unexpected place. This last one was the case here, where the figure was referred to on the LinkedIn profile of a former Square Enix executive.
Courtesy of current CREY Games CEO Fabien Rossini, we now know that the Tomb Raider reboot's exclusivity deal was valued at $100 million. This deal ensured that Rise of the Tomb Raider would spend one year only on Xbox, before making a delayed release on PlayStation.
At the time - we're speaking 2015 - this sparked no small amount of grumbling among Lara Croft's fans, as the intrepid adventurer had a long history on Sony platforms.
The foundation of this timed exclusivity deal was laid back when the annoyingly not subtitled Tomb Raider (2013) was in development. With a legendarily tough production period, publisher Square Enix and developer Crystal Dynamics clashed internally on a constant basis regarding the project. Microsoft, which already had a healthy relationship with the companies, heartily supported the vision for the reboot and was instrumental in turning it into reality.
With this groundwork, it wasn't hard to conceive of a formal deal for the sequel. $100 million is a huge amount of money, especially when we consider that this was just for a one-year deal, rather than lasting console exclusivity. Tomb Raider and Rise of the Tomb Raider launched on PC as well as consoles, and were eventually followed up by the third reboot installment, Shadow of the Tomb Raider.
If you ever want to secure an exclusivity deal for Tomb Raider, you now know what kind of ballpark figure to save up. Time to get a big piggy bank!