Ubisoft's much anticipated open-world title, Watch Dogs was supposed to be one of the biggest titles of this holiday season. But with about a month to go before its release, Watch Dogs was taken off the blotter; it now has a Spring 2014 release date for all platforms.
Ubisoft published this statement directly from the Watch Dogs development team on its blog:
Our ambition from the start with Watch Dogs has been to deliver something that embodies what we wanted to see in the next-generation of gaming. It is with this in mind that we’ve made the tough decision to delay the release until spring 2014.
We know a lot of you are probably wondering: Why now? We struggled with whether we would delay the game. But from the beginning, we have adopted the attitude that we will not compromise on quality. As we got closer to release, as all the pieces of the puzzle were falling into place in our last push before completion, it became clear to us that we needed to take the extra time to polish and fine tune each detail so we can deliver a truly memorable and exceptional experience.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you. We thoroughly enjoy and appreciate the way you respond on the web, at events, press conferences and other opportunities we have to interact. Your passion keeps us motivated.
We can’t wait to see you in Chicago next spring. We are confident you’ll love this game as much as we love working on it.
Ubisoft also delayed the release of open-world racing title The Crew until the second half of 2014.
UPDATE: If you pre-ordered a PlayStation 4 or Xbox One Watch Dogs bundle, Ubisoft does not have any information on what will happen to your pre-order. When questioned by Kotaku, an Ubisoft representative replied:
Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo understand the importance of releasing games of the very highest quality for their consoles. Our partnership with Sony remains strong and we will have more details to share about the specific benefits of this partnership for PlayStation customers at a later date.
When pressed further, the representative said:
We hope that players who have pre-ordered the game will still look forward to playing it in Spring 2014, and that the extra polish and quality we’ll be able to add to the game will ensure a fantastic gaming experience.
If you have a pre-order for a Watch Dogs bundle, I suggest keeping a look out for announcements from your retailer of choice.
UPDATE 2: Amazon has announced the following: "All orders for the Watch Dogs PlayStation 4 bundle will keep their place in line and we will fulfill the PlayStation 4 (without the Watch Dogs game) in accordance with your current delivery estimate. We are working on adjusting these orders and will update you as soon as we know more."
GameStop will allow its customers to either change their bundle to a different bundle (which will be available on launch day for the appropriate console) or keep their existing bundle and receive the console at launch and Watch Dogs whenever the game releases (via PixelEnemy).