Microsoft made a big decision last summer when it decided to delay Starfield, with the Xbox exclusive now set to launch in the first half of 2023. At the time, fans were understandably frustrated at the delay, but Xbox says it learnt from past experiences when making the decision.
Speaking recently with The Verge, Xbox boss Phil Spencer talked about how the team has experience with launching games too early.
"It isn’t really a decision to move a game after spending the team’s effort over multiple years just to get to a point where you know you’re not going to deliver the game you want on the date that was promised. Now, it is at some level, because I have shipped games too early. We have experienced shipping games too early."
"In hindsight, when you look at a game like Starfield, it’s taken so long and so much investment in new IP from the team. The decision to give the team the time to build the game that they feel they should be building is just the right thing to do."
"There are financial implications to those decisions. Weighing what is going to happen, whether it’s platform growth, subscriber growth, or frankly, the revenue that you generate when a new game launches, those are business decisions. You definitely have to weigh the outcome of those decisions."
Now, unfortunately Phil doesn't namedrop any of these 'shipped too early' titles (damnit, we'd have loved a scoop!), but a few certainly come to mind. Crackdown 3 - we're looking at you!
Either way, Phil and the team clearly believe that Bethesda's upcoming RPG deserves a little more time in the oven, and honestly, we're glad to see that decision being made. 2022 ended up being a light year for Xbox, but in the end, Starfield stands to benefit from its relatively short delay.