Iris.Fall Takes A Slight Release Date Spill

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December 7, 2018 is the new release date for indie developer NEXT Studio and publisher Zodiac Interactive’s Iris.Fall. While you’re waiting for this gorgeous and atmospheric puzzler, here’s a new trailer that’s still more of a tease but still manages to be too tantalizing:

While the delay is slightly disappointing, any time spent adding more polish to a game that already looks spectacular is more than welcome. Keep an eye peeled for this one next month.

-GW

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Delays of Games: No Penalty, Just Breathing Room

Yes, it happens to the best of them, folks. While disappointing, game delays aren’t the end of the world other than setting one’s expectations for playing what one wants to back a bit. In almost every case, it’s a case where developers want more time to tighten things up and apply a final (well, pre-patch) coat of polish to products so they’re even better when they finally make it to market. This isn’t only a AAA thing, as you’ll see from these three examples.

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Red Dead Redemption II has slipped into October (10/26/2018), but I’m not at all concerned because it’s Rockstar Games we’re talking about here and they’ve very rarely steered gamers wrong when a product slides past an initial launch date (or second or third, for that matter!). Hell, if anything, the new date will keep a lot of people safe at home on Halloween and quire possibly all the way through the holiday season. I’m only half joking, by the way. I know I’ll be camped out in front of my TV until actual tumbleweeds roll past my bleary eyes.

 

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Zelda: Breath of the Wild Site Is A Breath of Fresh Air Today

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Yep. While the disappointment of the release slipping possibly into next summer is a bit annoying, the fact that The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild now has an official site chock full of too much info is a really good thing. Go poke around, please. Especially if you’re a big, cranky skeptic who didn’t get the chance to play the demo this past June and think an open world Zelda is somehow a bad idea despite the series being chock full of open world goodness from the very first entry.

-GW

ADR1FT Could Be The Best PR For VR

With Virtual Reality slowly but surely making its way (once again, but new and improved – “this time for sure, presto!”) to gaming and other entertainment experiences, it’ll be the early games that will be the ones that make or break the format. Granted, common sense says new experiences aren’t going to be flawless and in terms of games, technical bumps and grinds are commonplace for first wave software. That said, VR needs to be as flawless as possible so any complaints are rendered mostly moot and allow developers to strut their stuff from the get-go as they start off with good games and make them better as time marches on.

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Three One Zero Games’ ADR1FT is looking like it’ll be not only a go-to game for those dipping a toe into the VR pool, but also an experience non-VR using gamers looking for something impressive to play and show off should dive into. Since my last time with the both VR and non-VR enabled versions of the game way back in March, the dev team has made some major changes to the visuals and tightened up the gameplay even more. Thanks to Unreal Engine 4 and some mighty programming skills, the level of detail here is even more astounding. This is especially noticeable in the PC version, where using an Oculus Rift headset I spent about half an hour floating around and checking out as much of the destroyed space station as I could while keeping as close to air canisters and air supply points as possible.
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Van Helsing Final Cut Slips Into October (But This Is A Good Thing)

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While game delays are always bad news, in this case it’s a case where the developer is trying to make a one-size fits all release work across multiple digital delivery systems in order to get the game in question into the hands of as many people as possible. Go read the very informative blog post on the official site for details. In a nutshell, NeoCore is working hard on getting Steam and GOG.com buyers the same deal where buying the trilogy nets those folks The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing Final Cut for free even if they buy one of the original games at a later date or buy the trilogy across the two different digital stores.

That’s hard enough to rig, but Final Cut is also going to be doing some additional testing and polishing of the game to insure it’s their best and most polished game to date. Hey, I don’t mind the wait if it means the end result makes me not want to stop playing it.

Project CARS Update: Three Out Of Four Isn’t Bad, Unless You Only Want One


 

Ha. So Project CARS has gone gold and is coming out on my birthday… at least for PC, PS4 and Xbox One owners. For some reason, the Wii U version has dropped off the radar in North America and I was worried that it was being silently killed off. However, thanks to Bandai Namco Europe posting these newer trailers that at least note the Wii U actually exists, my hope meter just coughed back to life. Of course, a careful eyeball or two will see that there’s no box art for the Nintendo version at the end of those trailers. That could be due to the game being a download only eShop title (he noted hopefully). I guess I could bug someone at Slightly Mad Studios to see what’s going on or even one of my PR contacts at Bandai namco here in the US. But I’ll hold off on that and just stay focused on more urgent matters.


 

Of course, if it IS a download only game there’s the distinct possibility that the game will be larger than the insane 15GB One Piece Unlimited World Red was. Eeek. Given that the only two hard drive sizes for the Wii U are 8GB ad 32GB, I’m predicting a lot of 64GB SD card sales should the Wii U version ever get a release. Well, I’ll keep my fingers crossed and hope for the best, as it seems no news isn’t exactly good news when it comes to some games these days. Delays don’t bother me at all, mind you. It’s just hearing nothing and seeing less that gets me fretting away.

New Batman: Arkham Knight Gameplay: Something to Tide You Over While You Wait A Little Longer


 

“Why so seriously delayed (again!)?” Actually, at this point the game looks so phenomenal that it’ll get snapped up even if it slips into the holiday season. I’m gathering this latest wait is due to the developer making sure the game will run as smoothly as possible out of the gate without the dreaded day one patching issues many games slap players in the face with. I’m wondering just how much better things would be if this was a completely single-player game with no online play, but such is the modern videogame development cycle that allows for DLC, season passes and other stuff that needs to work right out of the box or it’s unhappy campers complaining all over the internet. Well okay, it’s not THAT much longer a wait, but I can see a few Bat-fans leaping around and huffing and puffing in their hockey pads.

Project CARS Skids Off-Road Into May

While this latest delay may seem like “bad” news, developer Slightly Mad Studios is letting gamers know that the game is pretty much done (99.9% is certainly “pretty much done” to me!) and just needs that extra QA love so it ships across all platforms ready to run out of the gate:

“Despite our long heritage and pedigree in making critically-acclaimed racing games, Project CARS is by far the grandest and most intricately detailed of them all. Despite therefore the game being 99.9% complete, the remaining 0.1% attending to small issues and bugs has been tricky to anticipate. We’re absolutely dedicated to delivering a ground-breaking experience and by targeting mid-May fans can be assured that’s what they’ll receive” said Ian Bell, Head of Studio at Slightly Mad Studios. “Again, we want to thank our fans for their support and patience on this matter. There’s a high expectancy from racing fans around the world that Project CARS is going to be an exciting new contender in the simulation racing space and we firmly believe gamers deserve it to be in its most complete and polished state when they come to play it on day one. And since the gaming community is our primary focus and has always been at the heart of the project during development, we would like to offer some free content to all players as compensation for this short delay and as acknowledgement of how grateful we are. This gift, that we’re sure is going to excite fans, will be available from day one and revealed shortly. Keep an eye on our website for more info.”

To me, this reads “We want the console versions to ship out with hopefully zero need for day one patching, particularly the Wii U version.”, which is a good thing at the end of the day. Given the release of certain other high profile racers plagued with bugs (notably Sony’s DriveClub and UbiSoft’s The Crew), seeing Slightly Mad take the extra time to add that bit of extra polish their game up is a good thing. I’m holding out the Wii U version will get some love and respect, as Nintendo just can’t seem to get a break when it comes to good marquee racers that aren’t Mario Kart 8. Yeah, yeah, it’s lightning fast, looks phenomenal and most of all is FUN to play. But at my age, I tend to like my racers a bit more grounded in reality.

Okay, back to holding my breath for a bit longer, which is tough to to with a sore throat, mind you…

The Witcher 3 January Update: Some Hot Stuff To Kill the Chill…


 

You know something folks? I just absolutely love that I can fall asleep every night knowing that The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is going to be one of 2015’s best games on anything it appears on. CD Projekt RED is going to get plenty of people hot under the collar and a few other places for all the right reasons when this game finally gets into the hands of eager gamers on May 19, 2015. In case you’ve been wondering why this one’s so late, the delay is so the dev team can squash any nasty bugs that would stop players from fully enjoying the experience. They could more than likely ship the game sooner and patch it up over time. However, given the troubles plaguing other AAA games from last year that did just that (you know who you are), I’m betting CDPR wants to avoid the wrath of fans complaining them to death on message boards worldwide. Good for them for wanting to get it all right, I say…

The Witcher 3 Update: Too Damn Good, Delayed Until May 2015

The Witcher 3 May Delay

Game delays aren’t great news at all and CD Projekt RED’s upcoming open-world RPG The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt has already be hit with one big delay that pushed the game into 2015 from 2014. Well, that wait has just gotten about twelve weeks longer. CDPR has issued an open letter to its fans explaining the (rather obvious) reasons for the delay: the game is just too damn big and good to be completed at its current pace. Well, that’s what I distilled from this note:

Dear Gamers,

Ever since we started working on The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, we knew it would be an ambitious game. We wanted, and still aim, to give you an incredible experience, an epic adventure in a vast, completely open fantasy universe.

The sheer size and complexity of The Witcher, key features of the title, have had a decisive impact on production. Now, nearing the end of our work, we see many details that need to be corrected. When we release the most important game in our studio’s history, we must be absolutely sure that we did everything we could to limit any bugs to a level that will allow you to enjoy the game thoroughly.

With this in mind, we took another look at current workloads and what they mean for the team. Even though everyone is working at full speed, we concluded that we need another 12 weeks, so we are shifting the release date of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt to May 19th, 2015.

We owe you an apology. We set the release date too hastily. It’s a hard lesson, one to take to heart for the future. We know what we want to do to make Wild Hunt one of the best RPGs you will ever play. And we continue to work hard to achieve just that. So, we apologize and ask for your trust.

Thank you for the all support you show us on a daily basis. We truly do appreciate it. It has fueled us in our passion since the start and will continue to do so.

The Board of CD PROJEKT SA

Amusingly enough, news came around the time this new trailer dropped online, but it just made me want to wait as long as it takes for the team to get it done:


 

Now, you could yell at CD Projekt RED to stop playing their own game so much and just get it out, but that would be a mistake. No game ships 100% bug free and this one is especially tricky. That extra three months should be enough for the dev team to tighten things up and make sure the launch goes as smoothly as possible. Remember, in addition to a digital version, the company is also making physical retail discs for two consoles and all of these have to run as smoothly as possible. Whatever issues are keeping CDPR busy are most likely affecting all three versions (or two, if you’re a PC diehard and console hater), but those of us who respect the developer know they’ll make it all work.