Bethesda has enjoyed a pretty successful past 12 months. After the release of the hugely anticipated Fallout 4 early in November of 2015 and idSoftware’s well-received reboot of first-person shooter DOOM in May this year, the company certainly has plenty to smile about.
With Skyrim Special Edition now available, Dishonored 2 mere days away from a worldwide launch on Xbox One, PS4 and PC and Arkane Studios’ Prey not to mention Quake Champions arriving in 2017, the future looks very bright for a company well known for pumping out AAA blockbusters.
In a recent interview with GamesIndustry.Biz, Marketing VP for Bethesda, Pete Hines openly discussed a variety of Bethesda related topics; one of which – the famed Fallout franchise. Whilst the apocalyptic open-world series remains a popular one for Bethesda, Hines believe sales for the series initial games do not represent a fair reflection of how good those games were. “If you only look at sales and sales volume, I don’t know whether or not you end up acquiring the Fallout franchise,” said Hines. “I’m not saying the sales were poor. I’m just saying that they didn’t accurately reflect just how good and important those initial Fallout games were.
Sales are an essential part of any studio looking to create a video game, something the series has never had trouble with since its introduction in 1997 under the guidance of Interplay Entertainment. Hines reiterated that while sales were of course, important, that there were other factors at play when evaluating a games performance.
“Sales is going to be a big part of it – we’re a company, with salaries to pay and lights to keep on – but there are cases where other factors are important in shifting your thinking one way of the other… When you look at anything we’ve done, whether that’s Dishonored or The Evil Within or Wolfenstein or Doom or whatever, certainly the sales are important, but there are other elements as well
“Now, if you sell four copies of something, you can make arguments all day long… Fortunately, we’ve never sold just four copies of anything.”
Bethesda’s Marketing VP also talked about another of the companies I.P’s – Prey, coming to Xbox One, PS4 and PC in 2017.
Zenimax acquired the Prey license back in 2009 and were working to create Prey 2, a title that was subsequently cancelled in 2014 before Bethesda stunned audiences this year by announcing a reboot of the game during its E3 conference in June. Developed by Arkane Studios, Prey will not resemble that of the Xbox 360 title with the Dishonored 2 developer taking a different approach with the shooter, something that undoubtedly has fans of the original game concerned. Hines, on the other hand, believes Arkane will deliver with Prey but also understands the ramifications of possible failure.
“All that’s really gonna matter is 2017, when we ship the game. If we do a good job, that’s what people are going to think of Prey going forward. If not, the negativity we’re going to get is gonna be all over the place, and most of it will have nothing to do with the name.”
Dishonored 2 releases November 11th for Xbox One, PS4 and PC, with Prey slated to launch in 2017 for Xbox One, PS4 and PC.