A clumsy Thief is a dead Thief – or so you might think. Eidos Montreal‘s much anticipated sneak-em-up title finally sleuthed into view earlier today, only to be met with a barrage of lukewarm critical reviews. Perhaps, after all of the game’s well-documented woes, this was the only likely outcome.
Still, there remains hope for the reboot. With little in the way of any next-gen competition to hamper the game’s sales, the Garrett-starring series may yet achieve another reasonably sized commercial success – and with that success, comes the inevitable talk of a sequel.
Speaking to OXM at an official press event held last week, Eidos Montreal’s Nick Cantin remained coy, though quietly confident about the possibility of a Thief sequel.
“Nothing’s announced yet but we’re very keen to see how people respond to the game […] We’ve built a really big universe around the first game, and there’s a lot of layers to it – the world is really deep […] so there’s a lot of possibilities to jump on.”
Discussing the title’s unique selling point, Cantin continued:
“Thief is really unique in its mentality […] when it came out it was new, it was fresh, it was very different to all the other games of the time, which were very one-directional […] I think we have the same situation with next-gen game consoles now […] There’s no game out there that’s really like this.”
Despite the game’s obvious similarity to the likes of Dishonored - another first-person stealth effort set in a plague-ravaged, quasi-fantastical city — Cantin is technically correct in that his title is the only one currently available on next generation systems.
Should this lack of competition fail to translate into a sales success it’ll be interesting to see how Eidos Montreal and publisher Square Enix choose to proceed. SE has a long and admirable history of backing its studios, even when sale figures fail to meet its high expectations. Of course, the recent examples of Tomb Raider and Sleeping Dogs may not apply here, as both games were considered developmental successes, despite faring relatively poorly at retail.
Poor scores aren’t necessarily an indication that Square Enix will seek to shuffle the pack, i.e. by ousting the team at Eidos Montreal in favor of a brand new studio. After all, this is the same group that successfully re-imagined the Deus Ex formula. Indeed, series like Assassin’s Creed have also gotten off to middling starts, before being turned around by a collection of well-adjudged sequels.
Are strong sales the only consideration when commissioning a sequel? How can Eidos Montreal improve upon its new Thief formula? Is the next-gen still awaiting its first true killer app? Let us know in the comments below, and be sure to check in with all of the latest Square Enix news, right here on Game Rant.
Thief is now available throughout North America with a European release date of February 28. The title is currently being developed for PC, PS3, Xbox 360, PS4 and Xbox One platforms.
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Source: TotalXbox (OXM)