Unfortunately Gears of War fans eagerly waiting to find out whether Carmine lives or dies are going to have to wait just a few months longer than originally thought. Today Microsoft and Epic Games, the publisher and developer of the series, announced that Gears of War 3 will be pushed back from its April 5, 2011 release date into Fall 2011.
In the announcement from Microsoft it is revealed that this delay seems solely based on Microsoft Games Studios wanting a major tentpole game to drive next year's holiday season for them:
"Gears of War 3 promises to be the biggest entertainment launch of 2011. The teams at Microsoft Game Studios and Epic Games have done great work thus far readying the title for release in the spring of 2011. However, we’ve elected to move the launch of Gears of War 3 until fall 2011 to make it the marquee title for the holiday season."
Epic Games has since posted on GearofWar.Xbox.com that this delay is not due to quality issues with the game and that this is just a release date shift to maximize sales potential. Epic Game's Executive Producer Rod Fergusson posted on the site that the game would have been in a complete and polished state had its release date stayed in April:
"I know fans are going to be disappointed with the new release date, but rest assured that this is a business decision between partners, and not a quality issue. Gears 3 was on track to be the most polished Gears of War game ever when it released in April, and this additional time allows us to polish it that much more before it hits shelves next fall. Next week we have a major multiplayer press visit at Epic HQ, and I'm really looking forward to the fans seeing and hearing about Gears 3 versus multiplayer for the first time. Lots more exciting news to come."
As a big fan of the series, and someone who just finished the recently released Anvil Gate novel, I was looking forward to seeing where the game goes since it is being written by the same author as the previous games, Karen Traviss. However, extra amount of time for Epic to polish and perfect the gameplay will hopefully get rid of some nagging problems like multiplayer connection issues.
Now, this is only a speculation on my part, but this could mean that we will not be seeing a Halo game next year. In the past Microsoft has alternated the releases of these two franchises so that only one gets released in a year. Whatever Halo game that Microsoft is working on at 343 Industries to follow up Halo: Reach may be needing more time for development, so they moved Gears 3 back to fill its spot. I could be completely wrong with this but I think it is possible.
So Ranters, does this delay disappoint anyone or is there going to be enough to play early next year that you wont be too worried about it? What do you think of a game that is basically finished getting delayed for marketing reasons? Please let us know in the comments.
Gears of War 3 is now slated for a Fall 2011 release on the Xbox 360.
Source: Gears of War