One of the things 2015 will always be remembered by is the fact that Fallout 4 was released. The game hadn’t seen a release in seven years and that was partly responsible for the level of hype and anticipation for the game. Fallout 4 turned out to be well-received by critics and fans, but the game’s success is largely based on the strategic planning by Bethesda, according to EEDAR.
For those that remember, Fallout 4 was revealed right before E3 2015 and then the game was given a bigger reveal at Bethesda’s E3 2015 showcase. During said showcase, the publisher announced a mobile game called Fallout Shelter was available after the show and that proved to be a very smart marketing and business move on the part of Bethesda.
Matt Diener, who is a qualitative analyst for EEDAR, talked to byteclay.com about the approach Bethesda Softworks took with their Fallout 4 plan and what was one of the smartest moves they made, that being Fallout Shelter. “Yet I think the biggest takeaway about Fallout 4’s launch story for other studios isn’t the short amount of time between announcement and release, but the carefully coordinated, multi-prong approach Bethesda took to engaging their fans out of the gate.
“The mobile simulation game Fallout Shelter was a masterstroke of fan engagement, as it provided the Bethesda faithful with a genuinely fun mini-game to play to tide them over until Fallout 4 arrived, and the Pip Boy limited edition was a great way for truly invested (and lucky) fans to show their commitment to the franchise by pre-ordering early,” Diener said.
With this being said, it was probably one of the more easy tasks to market Fallout 4 because let’s face it, there wasn’t a whole lot Bethesda could do wrong when it came to promoting the game. Any sort of information, footage or reveal was welcomed with viral hype over the weeks leading up to the game’s launch.
The biggest factor in the game getting the reception it did was the fact that the game hadn’t seen a release in seven years. That was enough for any fan to embrace whatever marketing tactics Bethesda implemented. Diener spoke further about what made Fallout 4’s announce and release path so intriguing.
“Fallout 4 is a particularly interesting case, since its announcement came less than six months before its release. That’s an extremely tight schedule to stick to, but the payoff is that the game got to essentially ride a wave of buzz from E3 to its release,” Diener said.