Bad news for people who were already placing pre-orders for Red Dead Redemption 2. Don’t roll your eyes or scoff. There were already people doing such things. Anyways, it isn’t going to happen this year. Despite Rockstar Games offering a 2017 release window for the game, it has been bumped. Now, it’s heading to the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in 2018 instead. Even worse, the Take Two Interactive quarterly earnings report pegs it in the next fiscal year, meaning we won’t see it until after April 1, 2018.
This is news that is both good and bad. Yes, positives and negatives will both arise from this delay. While we always all want a promising game as soon as possible, that doesn’t always happen. And Red Dead Redemption 2 is something people have been clamoring over for years. While we console ourselves, let’s go over why this is both good and bad for everyone.
The negatives are rather obvious. We aren’t getting Red Dead Redemption 2 this year. When Rockstar announced it would be out in 2017, despite there being no real information yet, it seemed like some sort of dream. It was too good to be true. Of course, it then indeed prove to be too good to be true. Not getting the game is a huge setback. Especially since it is something that would very likely have been the biggest release in the second half of 2017 and perhaps 2017’s best game.
There’s also a sense of damaged trust. A lot of companies have been pulling this thing where they reveal barely anything about a game ahead of launch. Bethesda did it for Fallout 4 and EA did it with Mass Effect: Andromeda. Results have been mixed. Seeing Rockstar start to do a similar thing with Red Dead Redemption 2, in that we’re only getting a trickle of information about a game that is out next year, hurts.
But then, we also want Red Dead Redemption 2 to be the best game it can be. One of Rockstar’s explanations for the delay pointed to this being the first game it made specifically for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. It isn’t a port, like Grand Theft Auto V was. A delay means a higher quality final product from a developer that is known for amazing games. While titles like GTA V have had their glitches, they’re typically not as broken at launch as games like the aforementioned Fallout 4 and Mass Effect: Andromeda. A delay means a better game for all of us.
There’s also a financial element to consider. Let’s be honest, 2017 has been a bumper year for games. The Switch was released. We received NieR: Automata, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Prey, Resident Evil VII, Horizon: Zero Dawn, Injustice 2, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, Injustice 2, and Nioh. That isn’t even taking into account games that haven’t launched yet, like Destiny 2, Call of Duty: WWII, Middle-Earth: Shadow of War, Super Mario Odyssey, Crackdown 3, Splatoon 2, and Star Wars Battlefront II. Do we really want Red Dead Redemption 2 to get lost in the shuffle? Can we really afford another major, must-have release like that in an already packed year? Thinning the herd helps a bit sometimes and will allow this game to stand out more.
It is a shame we aren’t getting Red Dead Redemption 2 now. It would be nice if we were. But, maybe it isn’t the worst that we aren’t. Sometimes, a bit of a buffer is okay. It is disappointing, sure, but we’ll survive and the game will be better for it.