When Ubisoft first announced their highly anticipated open world, tech-focused title Watch Dogs would not make its November 2013 release date, they followed the announcement with a new, tentative release window of spring 2014. Now, they have provided a little more clarity as to what “spring” means, and also revealed that the Wii U version of the game has been delayed.
Now, provided the game doesn’t slip again, it appears Watch Dogs is headed for a release sometime between April and June of this year, right before summer kicks off in earnest. Ubisoft delivered the Watch Dogs news as part of their quarterly earnings report, where they also confirmed that the Wii U version needs a little extra development time and therefore won’t be making the April-June window.
This Watch Dogs news couldn’t has come at a better time, as a recent trademark kerfuffle regarding the game had some gamers worried that Ubisoft scrapped the project. Alas, the trademark was swiftly restored by the USPTO and all was right with the world.
Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for the Wii U version, which, by all accounts, has been receiving little to no attention over the past few months. And when there were stories, they were rumors of the version’s potential cancellation.
Thankfully, the Wii U version has not gone the way of Alien: Colonial Marines, but rather it will be a few weeks (months?) late. PC gamers are plenty familiar with Ubisoft’s delays of specific versions of popular games, but in most cases that is in service of delivering a sharper end product.
“We made the difficult decision to further delay the release of Watch Dogs on Wii U to focus the team’s resources where they could have the broadest possible benefit for both our customers and Ubisoft.”
For Watch Dogs on the Wii U, the delay likely means fine-tuning the title’s gamepad-specific mechanics. It also means more time for the Ubisoft devs to focus on getting the other current-gen and next-gen titles up to snuff first.
As one of the biggest third party titles slated to hit the Wii U this year a lot is riding on Watch Dogs‘ success, both for Nintendo and Ubisoft. So if the game requires a little extra time in the oven then so be it.
When we first saw Watch Dogs back at E3 2012, it became instantly clear that this was a project with a lot of ambition. Then, after seeing the game’s multiplayer and getting a better understanding of the various mechanics at work, most pegged Watch Dogs as the must-have next-gen launch title. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen; but Watch Dogs is still a must-have in our books. And now we have a little better idea as to when we can play it.
When exactly do you think Watch Dogs will hit stores? Will you wait for the Wii U version of the game?
Watch Dogs will release between April and June of 2014 for the PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One. The Wii U version will follow sometime after that.