on Mar 20, 2014
The frustrating thing about this game is that it’s interesting for all the wrong reasons. I could probably do a half dozen articles on its gameplay, disjoint story, tonal deficiencies, clever ideas, mixed level design, long dev cycle, confusing approach to canon, regrettable attempts at melodrama, unintentionally comical villain, and earnest attempt to live up to its legacy as a Thief game. This isn’t a game, it’s a crime scene. “What happened to this franchise? Who did it, and why? Will they strike again?”
But there’s no reason to write those articles, because nobody cares. Nobody is playing it. Two weeks ago my column on the game got just 12 comments, which is the equivalent of having the internet nod its head reflexively while not actually listening to me as I prattle on. The game is less than a month old, and the story is over already.
Sometimes a flawed or broken game comes out and the outraged consumers can sustain a nice round of podcasts, video rants, webcomics, blog posts, and animated .gif memes. It happened for Aliens: Colonial Marines. It happened for Duke Nukem Forever. But it’s not happening here. Nobody cares. The sales figures on this thing must be abominable.
EDIT: I looked it up on VG Charts. They don’t have PC numbers, but according to their figures Thief has sold 771,036 copies so far across all console platforms. For comparison: On the PS3 this month, it sold less than Skyrim.
Shamus Young is an old-school OpenGL programmer, author, and composer. He runs this site and if anything is broken you should probably blame him.