PlayStation exclusive pushed back by months
The Last of Us Part 2, one of the most anticipated games in the world, has been hit by a major delay.
The release date will be pushed back until May 2020, developers announced, amid problems with getting the game ready.
The game had been scheduled to come out in February, and the company had been holding a series of events to promote the game that suggested it would be ready for the promised release date. Critics had praised the game after those early events, suggesting not only that it was running on schedule but that it could live up to the much-loved original.
But Mr Druckmann said there was more left to do.
"I know," he continued. "It was just about a month ago when we had our big blowout for the game, letting media play over two hours of it along with debuting our new story trailer and revealing the release date. The positive response we saw from our community was overwhelming. You can feel the energy among the team members. After working on something for so many years, it’s invigorating to get a glimpse of validation for all the hard work.
"However, it was during the last few weeks, as we were closing out sections of the game, that we realized we simply didn’t have enough time to bring the entire game up to a level of polish we would call Naughty Dog quality. At this point we were faced with two options: compromise parts of the game or get more time. We went with the latter, and this new release date allows us to finish everything to our level of satisfaction while also reducing stress on the team.
"While we’re relieved that we won’t have to compromise our vision, we’re disappointed that we weren’t able to avoid this exact situation. We wish we could’ve foreseen the amount of polish we needed, but the size and scope of this game got the better of us. We hate disappointing our fans and for that we’re sorry."
Mr Druckmann's reference to "reducing stress on the team" comes amid increasing concern about the effect of the frenzied working conditions of the game industry, and the damage that can be done to the people who work in it.
The Last of Us 2 will be exclusive to the PlayStation 4 when it is released, now in May.