Bethesda Games Studios’ Todd Howard, the director of Fallout 4, states that he aims to reduce the time between when a game is announced and when it is released.
Fallout 4 went from being announced to being released in a mere six months, which is more-or-less breaking the sound barrier compared to the typical launch cycle of a Triple-A title (for example, The Division was announced all the way back in 2013). During a recent interview, Fallout 4 director Todd Howard has revealed that this speedy system is something Bethesda Games Studio is aiming to make a standard practice.
To be fair, Fallout 4 has an advantage over most games when it comes to the short time between announcement and release: the game was the sequel to one of the industry’s most beloved games. While not every title can carry such clout, Howard states that this is the way he prefers to do business:
“I really prefer it, for multiple reasons. There are moments when you get excited about hearing about something. I think that’s a special moment. Then you take Fallout, people already wanted it and that helps tremendously. The other thing is, while you’re making a game, you’re figuring out, ‘OK, what’s really good about it?’ ‘What’s this?’ ‘What’s this?’ If you’re talking about that too early, people aren’t getting excited, they’re getting anxious.”
Bethesda Games Studios is even following this mantra for their downloadable content packs, and recently announced three different Fallout 4 DLC items, which are poised to release in quick succession within the next four months. At the DICE 2016 summit this week, Howard also dropped the news that the studio was working on three different ‘big and crazy’ projects simultaneously, which are now more likely to be announced and promptly released.
Now fans will know that when a game is announced, Bethesda will be confident it can release the game shortly after. Those fans can even estimate a release date for a game – although Howard confirmed that template isn’t set in stone:
“How long that time is, is to be determined. It could be a lot shorter, believe it or not, or [six months] could be the right amount of time. It differs per project.”
Howard also revealed that one of the previously announced ‘crazy projects’ isn’t as big as the others, but remained mum on if these games would be announced at Bethesda’s recently announced E3 conference. Given that he had just hinted that the games may come out in a time scale similar to Fallout 4’s post-announcement, we wouldn’t be surprised to see the studio announcing some of these titles in Los Angeles this year, around six months ahead of the holiday window.