After stealing the show at E3 2012 with the unveiling of Watch Dogs, a game that didn't fully come into focus, Ubisoft had some big shoes to fill heading into the following year's event. But, true to form, the publisher blew everyone away in 2013 with their demo for The Division, a title that, from a visual standpoint, looked like a genuine representation of next-gen tech.
Since then, anticipation for The Division has continued to grow, as gamers learn more about the game's world state and its revolutionary new Snowdrop engine. It was easily one of our most anticipated releases for this year, but unfortunately it appears The Division will not be making its original release window.
Ubisoft confirmed earlier today that the title had been pushed to 2015, a disappointing announcement to be sure. They also confirmed that The Division will be part of their E3 2014 showcase, where attendees will learn more about the publisher's plans for the game.
"As you have noticed, The Division is not included into our full-year guidance. It will now be released in calendar 2015. We will provide more information on this highly anticipated new brand at E3."
While gamers will likely be disappointed by news of The Division's delay, they shouldn't be too surprised. Ubisoft has a longstanding tradition of delaying almost of their highly anticipated releases (see: Watch Dogs, Splinter Cell: Blacklist), provided they aren't titled Assassin's Creed.
Not to mention, Ubisoft just recently surprised everyone with the announcement that Far Cry 4 is scheduled to release this November. Combine that with the release of at least one, likely two, Assassin's Creed titles — Assassin's Creed: Unity for sure — and there was little room for The Division in 2014.
Overbooking aside, the push into 2015 makes sense for Ubisoft because it gives them at least two high profile releases for next year, on top of another Assassin's Creed. So rather than a very back-loaded 2015, Ubisoft can fill out there slate with The Crew and The Division, much like they are doing this year with Watch Dogs and Far Cry 4.
Regardless, The Division is poised to make a big showing at E3 2014, and hopefully Ubisoft's presentation will give attendees a more in-depth look at the game in action. It's funny that, for a game this highly anticipated, we haven't really seen much in the way of gameplay footage. That should change soon though.
Are you surprised that The Division was delayed? Does this change your enthusiasm for the game?
The Division will now release in 2015 for current-gen platforms.
Follow Anthony on Twitter @ANTaormina