It goes without saying that The Last Guardian had garnered a reputation as one of gaming’s most infamous development hell projects, until it was re-revealed at E3 2015. Following delay upon delay since its announcement nearly a decade ago, it appeared that there was light at the end of the tunnel when Team Ico announced an official release date of October 25, 2016, for the long-gestating title. But according to a new development update from Sony President Shuhei Yoshida, it appears that The Last Guardian will miss its scheduled release date – again.
In a new post on the official PlayStation Blog, Yoshida announced that while Team Ico are “fast approaching major milestones” in the development of The Last Guardian, the team has “encountered more bugs than anticipated while in the final stages of development”. As such, the tough decision was made to delay the release of the long-awaited game by a few weeks, from October 25 to December 6. This latest delay is yet another complication in a game where the creator himself admitted that the long development process was “completely unexpected“, but this could perhaps be a blessing in disguise.
Just a few months ago, a number of reports surfaced that The Last Guardian E3 2016 demo was decidedly underwhelming due to a number of gameplay and graphical issues. Those extra few weeks of polish will be invaluable in ironing out any problems that were noted by journalists, and judging by the new batch of stunning screenshots that were released just a few weeks ago, it appears that Team Ico have already been using all the recent feedback to refine the game.
At this point in The Last Guardian‘s development cycle, a delay of a few weeks is far from a dealbreaker and not all that uncommon – just recently, the similarly long-gestating Final Fantasy 15 was delayed yet again for some additional polishing time. Given that The Last Guardian‘s recent E3 demo didn’t exactly wow audiences, as well as the fact that the game has the unenviable task of living up to Team Ico’s previous two games, the critically-acclaimed Ico and Shadow of the Colossus, this latest delay can only be a good thing for a game that’s been hyped as one of 2016’s most anticipated games.
The Last Guardian is scheduled for release on December 6, exclusively for PlayStation 4.
Source: PlayStation Blog (via IGN)