Worst Video Game Delays | GameSided Roundtable

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Barrett Womack (Twitter)

There have been a lot of annoying video game delays in the history of the games industry, but without a doubt the most confounding was the delay of Rayman Legends. The follow-up to the amazing Rayman Origins, it was originally meant to be a Wii U launch title. Not only was it a perfect fit for the console and its demographics, it was going to be a great way for Ubisoft to get a foothold on Nintendo consoles, and show that Nintendo and 3rd parties could work well together. The game was built with the Wii U GamePad specifically in mind, making it all the more enticing as an exclusive.

Then, things started getting weird. Delays moved the game back from a November 30, 2012 release date to February 26, 2013. In the meantime, a demo was released on the Wii U eShop, showing off a few levels and getting Wii U owners ready for the game. But then mere weeks before Rayman Legend’s release, after it had been announced that the game had gone gold, it was delayed again. The Wii U-exclusive title was pushed back September so the game could be released on Xbox 360 and Playstation three simultaneously. Everyone was upset – even the developers of the game itself were publicly opposed to the delay.

Nothing about this delay made any sense then, and it doesn’t make any sense now. Ubisoft had a must-buy exclusive, releasing at the perfect time – in the early days of the Wii U, quality titles were scarce. Rayman Legends, after its release, received nearly universal critical acclaim. If it had released when it was finished, Rayman Legends could have been one of the early-best sellers of the system. But after this whole fiasco came to light, some fans who had been eagerly awaiting the title became hostile, causing many people who had pre-ordered the game to boycott the game outright.

Rayman Legends still ended up selling well, and has been a success overall. But it could have been so much more, if not for its publisher’s oddities.

Keith Myers (Twitter)

When I think of awful delays, Starcraft: Ghost comes to mind first. It was announced in 2002 and after multiple delays, it was put on “indefinite hold.” It wasn’t officially cancelled until 2014. Of course, for a game to be my answer for this roundtable discussion, it should probably exist. S:G doesn’t exactly meet that criteria.

Instead, the worst delay I’ve dealt with is probably Too Human. It was originally supposed to be released as a PlayStation game back in 1999. Multiple delays contributed to it being moved to the Nintendo 64, and then to the Xbox 360. Too Human wasn’t released until 2008, after almost a decade of delays.

The worst part of all of this is that all of those delays didn’t result in a good game. Too Human was mediocre and forgettable in almost every possible way. That is probably a good thing given how this story ends. A lawsuit ultimately ended with the game’s remaining unsold copies being destroyed and the game being removed from the Microsoft Digital Marketplace.

Martin Benn (Twitter)

I have always been pretty active through my childhood, so I never really felt video games delays too much then. As I’ve gotten older and have more income, I’d say I’ve always had a pretty long backlog to play through. I never really feel video game delays as long as a title becomes available on the system. In that sense, my worst type of delay is time-exclusive delays. Most notably, my most anticipated game this year was Rise of the Tomb Raider. I don’t have any plans to own an Xbox One for Tomb Raider and Ori and the Blind Forest (Editor’s note: Ori and the Blind Forest is also available on PC), so it’s gonna be a delay of however long that agreement is before I play that game on PS4. Hardest part will be shopping for other games as the cover taunts me for Xbox One.

Other times this has happened is self-imposed delays I put on myself like not playing parts of series but the whole thing. So I did not play Mass Effect as a series until I saw the full collection for PS3. Avoiding spoilers for Mass Effect 3 was an almost impossible mission. However, for my own enjoyment I like playing things from the beginning so the delay in playing them until I can do so is not bad. Avoiding spoilers is the hardest part of doing things this way.

Fraser Gilbert (Twitter)

As a fan of Cricket games, every time a new title comes along I am intrigued. Ashes Cricket 2013 failed in so many ways that it has the unfortunate honor of being cancelled after it was originally released, due to so many complaints. The game was delayed twice during development, and messages from the developers tried to convince the public that everything was going smoothly despite many gamers voicing their concerns, and unfortunately they were right to do so.

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There aren’t too many Cricket games compared to the huge franchises such as Madden and FIFA, so when they come along I am hopeful for something special. The Ashes series provides the perfect scenario to capitalize on the hype of the tournament and virtually recreate it through a game, so when Ashes Cricket 2013 actually missed the deadline due to delays, I had to find other ways to satisfy my hunger for video game Cricket. An unfortunate failure story which went drastically wrong, this game goes into the history books, but for all the wrong reasons.

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