In late March, Square Enix cited "weak sales"
of big console titles to explain its massive restructuring, which saw the dismissal of now-former President Yoichi Wada. Games such as Hitman: Absolution
and Tomb Raider
were slated to reach over three million units in sales in fiscal 2013, arguably considered successful to other publishers.
Meanwhile, Eidos Montreal's reboot of the long-running Thief series reportedly suffered multiple setbacks
during its lengthy development cycle. When asked if he feels pressure to ship a critically-acclaimed game in light of the "disappointing" sales of other top-tier Square Enix games, Thief
Producer Stefan Roy told Joystiq at E3 that the developer "cannot compromise with this one. We reinvented this franchise, I think we have a single shot."
"We cannot say, 'oh sorry, we missed, so we are going to try again.' No, it doesn't work that way," he added. "So we cannot compromise, we must really give a good product, we must work closely with the marketing to make sure that the messaging around the game is really clear."
During our chat with Roy, one thing was made clear: Thief
's development timeline wasn't particularly different from that of other games. Even if the game was first announced in 2009, "it's not true to say the next morning development started," he said. To Roy, any bumps in the road for Eidos Montreal was normal, and "the core team is still the same," even after reported changes in the development staff over the years.
Roy emphasized the challenge involved in launching a new game in a storied series. "For Thief
, the first thing is to make sure we convince people that it's a Thief game. If we put the Thief
sticker on the box, it's because we respect the franchise," he said.
That challenge isn't anything new to Eidos Montreal. "It's a little like Deus Ex: Human Revolution
a couple of years ago, we have the same kind of pressure to bring back that type of franchise," he continued. "But yeah, there is this pressure to have a commercial success, of course."
will launch on PS4, Xbox One and PC in 2014.