The Witcher 3 release date has been one of the most anticipated bits of information since the epic RPG was first unveiled for PS4 and Xbox One. After seeing The Witcher 3 demo at E3 2013, CD Projekt RED’s final outing in The Witcher trilogy became one of the initial must-have games for the next-gen consoles. Unfortunately, knowing The Witcher 3 release date is a tad bittersweet.
CD Projekt RED has announced The Witcher 3 release date as February 2015. Its original ship date was expected to be sometime in 2014. Coming out of E3 last year, gamers worldwide were hoping the game would ship alongside both the PS4 and Xbox One. That was always known to be wishful thinking, but just how wishful wasn’t known until now, when The Witcher 3 release date became official.
To CD Projekt RED’s credit, they know the February 2015 release is disappointing to millions of gamers. So, while announcing the delay, the company’s senior management — in fact its Board of Directors — penned a letter directly to gamers. Here’s an excerpt:
“Ever since we started working on the third installment in The Witcher franchise, it has been our aim to produce a title that would take our 11 years of experience in creating RPGS and distill them into a quintessence, into a game that would effectively crown those years. At the same time, we have wanted The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt to expand creative boundaries, set new benchmarks, develop the genre as a whole. Ultimately, you, the players, must get an unforgettable adventure to experience in a vast, open world — and that’s most important.
“We’ve created a story that flows naturally, cinematically, rendered it in amazing sound and visuals, while preserving full freedom of choice — all for you. We knew this to be an ambitious plan, but believed we could achieve it by bringing together our team with its creative energies and current gaming platforms with their technical capabilities. A project this vast and complex would inevitably require special care in its final stages, manual fine-tuning of many details, thorough testing time and again.
We recently reexamined what we had achieved thus far, and faced a choice about the game’s final release date. The decision we made was difficult, thoroughly considered, and ultimately clear and obvious. We could have released the game towards the end of this year as we had initially planned. Yet we concluded that a few additional months will let us achieve the quality that will satisfy us, the quality gamers expect from us. Consequently, we have set the release of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt for February 2015.
Dear gamers — we know many of you would have liked to play The Witcher 3 sooner, as soon as possible, even. We’re sorry to make you wait longer than you, or we, initially assumed you would. At the same time, we believe the game will prove to be worth the wait and meet the expectations you have of us. We believe The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt will be an exceptional RPG, one of the best, providing many hours of wonderful entertainment.
While The Witcher 3 release date being in Feb. 2015 is disheartening, it’s encouraging to see the game’s publisher give CD Projekt RED the time it feels is necessary to do the game right. Warner Bros. Interactive is publishing and distributing the game in North America, while Namco will distribute it in Europe. Warner Bros. has found a good groove recently, and seeing the publisher exercise patience with this title is great.
With that said, would we all have rather seen The Witcher 3 release date sometime in 2014? Absolutely. But knowing all the hardware and firmware tweaks Microsoft and Sony are making to their Xbox One and PS4, respectively, knowing that The Witcher 3 release date is a ways off means the open-world RPG will be that much more optimized and polished. That can only be a good thing.