Near-Future: Wasteland 2 Possibly Delayed A Mite

By Alice O'Connor on August 4th, 2014 at 6:00 pm.

So tacky, Los Angeles.

August is here! This means Wasteland 2 is almost here too, as inXile said in May that’s when they’d release their crowdfunded RPG. 31 days of possibility! Or 27 now, seeing it’s already the 4th of August. But wait, hang on, now inXile have stretched that window back out to possibly 34 days, or even 41. It may be slightly delayed while they put things in boxes, I’m saying. Given that it’s two-and-a-half years since the Kickstarter launched and 26 years since the original game came out, another fortnight isn’t much.

Project lead Chris Keenan explained in a Kickstarter update on Friday:

“It’s pretty likely that we will slip into the first or second week in September due to fulfillment of the physical goods and discs. We will give an exact date as soon as we know it.”

It’s fair enough that they don’t want anyone–especially people who paid extra to get stuff wot they can touch–to feel left out. Boxes and discs are modern-day feelies. Handily, this’ll also give inXile a little more time to fix and improve things before stamping it “DONE” (then inevitably starting work on post-release patches). Statistically, this delay means it’s likely that at least one backer will die before they get to play, but this hypothetical person has a bigger problem.

If you absolutely positively cannot wait an extra week or two, the version on Steam Early Access is open to everyone who backed the Kickstarter with enough cash to get a copy of the finished game. It is nearly finished, after all. Hold your own fake launch party on August 31 if you must.

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55 Comments »

  1. TekDragon says:

    Loving the beta, especially with the latest balance patch. Hope these guys take all the time they need.

  2. Freud says:

    I think they’ve shown enough for there to be no real reason to worry about a delay.

  3. Premium User Badge

    golem09 says:

    Good, good. Got to finish a paper til the end of august, this will come in handy for my one month holiday in september.

  4. Premium User Badge

    Anthile says:

    Well, you can always bridge the time by replaying Fallout (or the original Wasteland, if you are brave enough) or rewatch Mad Max (or A Boy and His Dog) for the n-th time. At least that’s what I’m going to do.

  5. benjamin says:

    Two and a half years? I could have sworn it has not been that long. Surely it was last year? Where has the time gone? Truly, I am but a mist that is here for a little while.

  6. reggiep says:

    Delays for games you can get Early Access seem like a non-issue. I fully support delays as it is, given that it usually means a better game. Last I played of Wasteland 2, it definitely seemed like a delay was warranted.

  7. Premium User Badge

    slerbal says:

    Good to see everyone is cool with the delay – good games should not be rushed :)

  8. Keyrock says:

    I’ve waited this long, I can wait a little longer. No problem.

  9. Enkinan says:

    Couple more weeks at this point doesn’t matter to me, I could use a few extra weeks in between Divinity OS and another RPG anyway.

  10. PopeRatzo says:

    I’m curious: Is there any length of delay that would cause concern? As slerbal said above, “”everyone is cool with the delay”. When would it no longer be cool? If it got to be Christmas, or next May 30, would you change your mind? How about if it slipped to Q4, 2015?

    I want to establish this up front, because if someone had suggested, on the day the Kickstarter was announced, that the game would still not be released as of Sept 1, 2014, they would have gotten lit up.

    Honest question, if inXile had said, in March of 2012, that the game wouldn’t come out until September, 2014, would it have changed anyone’s mind about supporting the Kickstarter? And is there any reason why a kickstarter developer would announce anything like a realistic release date if those dates don’t mean anything to anybody?

    • colw00t says:

      Part of the problem with games kickstarters is that promised release dates can’t be changed once the kickstarter is underway, which means that if you hit a lot of stretch goals (like wasteland 2 did) then they go right out the window. Inexile ended up with three times the money they were hoping for, the game is correspondingly larger. Once the kickstarter was over they said they were aiming for an 18-24 month development cycle so they are actually pretty accurate to their projected release.

      This delay would bother me if I hadn’t seen a lot of evidence that Inexile is working very productively on making the game as good as they can make it. The early builds have been getting progressively better and I am perfectly satisfied that they’re spending my money productively.

    • nrvsNRG says:

      No it wouldn’t bother me. It could be 10 years later and I still wouldn’t care. As long as i can see the progress.

      • tomimt says:

        10 years would not be good. That’d be a serious sign of a troubled production. But the current delays still are more than toleratable, especially because inXile has been pretty good in showing what they’ve been doing.

        • nrvsNRG says:

          hypothetically then, if there was a fictional game that I really wanted, and I could see regular progress that could go on indefinitely; I wouldn’t mind a 10 year wait.

          • JFS says:

            Dead State.
            Age of Decadence.
            Project Zomboid.

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            SuddenSight says:

            Once every couple months I remember that I once backed Overgrowth when it was first announced, and I salivate a little in anticipation. At least another year or two for that, I would expect. Hype!

          • PopeRatzo says:

            So, 10 years would be OK with you. How about 15? Is there any limit as long as you can “see progress”?

            If we get to the point that it starts to bump up against your life expectancy, would that concern you? I’m curious, you see, because it gives me a better understanding of kickstarter game development. If you’re supporting it only to “see progress”, and not to get a finished game, then the narrative of why people back kickstarter projects starts to change in a significant way, and it’s more of a charitable donation and less of “supporting games that would otherwise not be made”.

            Are you in the indie game development industry, by any chance? I’m starting to think of kickstarter much more in the context of social media – community building, if you will – than anything having to do with the promotion of unique products. I can understand the “I backed X game and boy am I glad I got this lousy t-shirt” mentality. It’s the gaming equivalent of having a sticker of a pink ribbon on your car. It displays social awareness and provides a cultural signifier, that you are “one of the good ones”.

            For what it’s worth, I think you’re much more representative of the people who back projects on kickstarter, and I’m the one who “doesn’t get it”. What I’m trying to say is, “It’s not you, it’s me”.

          • nrvsNRG says:

            OK look, I don’t mind supporting my hobby (and buying more games then I really should), but I definitely want to see a finished product, that’s the only reason I would back a KS project; this isn’t just some sort of games development philanthropy to me. It basically comes down to the simple fact that if it means getting the best game possible I don’t mind the wait, even if I’m hyped. Take Witcher 3 for example. I’m seriously looking forward to playing that, and even pre-ordered as soon as it came onto Steam; but if CDPR had said, look guys its gonna be another 12 months, I would be bummed out, but certainly not angry or even annoyed (although I’m sure there would be shit loads of tantrums being thrown by entitled gamers). Maybe if I was younger (or older) with a less disposable income, the money side of things would be more of an issue.
            You mentioned life expectancy, but I’m pretty sure I will be as passionate about gaming in the next 25 years, as I was in the last. So lets just say that’s probably my limit before I start getting annoyed, lol.

    • Emeraude says:

      I think most backers are totally willing to forgive delays. Less likely to forgive the game not fulfilling its promises and filling the niche it is supposed to properly. And given the huge hollowing it has to fill after years of nothingness, I’d be kinda tense if I were working for inXile.

      The game being worse than bad, mediocre, would be a cold shower for all.

    • Keyrock says:

      5 weeks, 2 days, 7 hours, 13 minutes, and 27 seconds. Anything after that would be concerning.

  11. Premium User Badge

    Kasper says:

    I have two questions:

    1: How complete is the current Early Access version? I have it in my library, but I don’t want to play it yet if it feels too unfinished.

    2: Why would fulfillment of physical goods and discs have an impact on the digital version? Couldn’t they just release the game digitally, and then send the physical stuff when it’s ready? Seems counter-intuitive to the whole point of digital distribution.

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      Zallgrin says:

      1. It feels finished, but that is not really the point. The Early access version has only about a third of the game (which is still about 6-8 hours of gameplay) and the saves are gonna be useless once the game releases. If you don’t mind redoing the beginning portion, then play it. It’s plenty fun. But I personally will wait until the game ships.

      • tomimt says:

        The Arizona part, that is the beta, actually is about 50% of the game and is, depending on your own playstyle, clocking in around 20-25 hours for players.

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          Zallgrin says:

          Oh, thanks for the correction! Kinda lost the track of what all the updates added.

    • Emeraude says:

      I think they don’t want the physical copy dedicated backers to feel left- out of the shared post release hype, the social exchange with others that can be part of enjoying that kind of game. I understand the sentiment to a point, but given the game is already in early access, it all seems kinda senseless to me – and I’m a physical copy dedicated backer.

  12. Fomorian1988 says:

    I’m actually okay with that. I might not finish Divinity: Original Sin by the end of August, so this way I’m more likely to end this game before Wasteland 2 comes out.

  13. twaitsfan says:

    Whenever I hear “take as long as you want as long as it’s good”, I think of George R R Martin and Feast for Crows. That worked out great.

    • Emeraude says:

      Chinese Democracy, Duke Nukem Forever, there’s a big list of those really.

    • JFS says:

      So it’s not just me – the book really isn’t up to par, is it?

  14. DrManhatten says:

    I wonder how it will compare to Divinity Original Sin which is the best kickstarter-backed game I’ve come across by a long mile. A true, real success story. Most other high profile projects so far have failed to deliver. [Including Occula Rift]

    • joa says:

      I think this is the inherent problem of Kickstarter. People are backing ideas they like, in this case old-style RPGs, and not questioning whether the developer will actually be able to execute it well. A good idea is nothing without good execution. Indeed I have heard that even in Divinity Original Sin the writing is extremely poor.

      • DrManhatten says:

        Well it is not outstanding but Larian never said it would be. It is more the game mechanics and the environment which I think work really well and with its modability I am sure there will be better story telling done by the community eventually. For my money it delivered spot on. Can’t say the same about the over-hyped Double Fine Productions so far :D

        • HadToLogin says:

          Are you saying it was written by Bethesda?

          Because outside of TES mods I can’t remember any big RPG mod with story better than original game…

      • nrvsNRG says:

        Don’t get me wrong, its a fantastic game that Ive already put 100+hours into; but yeah, now the new game smell has gone, I can totally admit that the writing is pretty bad.

      • colw00t says:

        Well, inExile’s leads are generally the perfect people to make Wasteland 2, and in fact have a lot of CRPG All-stars on board, which is a big part, IMO, of why they ended up funded at something like 300%. One the stretch goals was to hire Chris Avellone, who is one of the best CRPG writers around, and Brian Fargo has an incredible track record.

        • Juke says:

          I’d probably buy a paperback compilation of Chris Avellone wishing people Happy Birthday on their Facebook walls, just to see what fresh take he brought to the table. Anything he contributes to tends to be better for it, and honestly, with him getting stretch-goaled into working on Wasteland, Pillars, and Torment, I’m almost surprised he didn’t get signed up to contribute some kind of prequel novella to Divinity, as well!

          • AyeBraine says:

            Honestly, the writing in Wasteland 2 beta didn’t strike me as exceptional. It’s a stupid thing to say (arbitrary expectations? immeasurable quality? unfinished game, and only a part of it at that), but I’m being honest here, I’ve played games for their writing all my life, and my profession is sort of connected to writing things and writing about written things (not in English though)… and the feeling was a mite strange. In many old and newer RPGs dialog and descriptions actually managed to bridge the suspension of disbelief coming from the limited scope of things the game could actually show you and things it could let you do. The words wove around the game mechanics, blurring them and promising more. Fallouts definitely were in this category. In Wasteland 2 Beta the words, although good, were rather hanging on the game’s mechanics. Which are quite abstract, due to their complex RPG open-endedness. I mean, it felt much closer to sand-boxy Shadowrun Returns than to Planescape: Torment. I’m waiting eagerly, of course, but my first impressions are rather something I wish the final game would overwrite, not deepen.

          • Juke says:

            Interesting. Game writing is definitely a talent not all studios have nailed down, sometimes even from game to game within a franchise (you can exit out the side door, Mass Effect… right behind Fallout: Tactics.) Remain interested in WL2 due to love of early Fallouts, but I’ll manage expectations.

      • Juke says:

        As someone who criticized the writing in Divinity: Original Sin during its growing pains in Early Access (where I had posted about it being just weak English prose grammatically, much less strong content-wise,) I will say that the writing in the finished product has actually been improved. Seems it was a case of programmer-prose creating weak links prior to being updated by their dedicated writing staff.

        So I will say, compared to the unfinished builds of the game, the writing in the final version of D:OS is not bad, with a pretty consistent tone and flourishes that are part of their fantasy setting.

        What it IS… is seriously cheesy. Which is to say, Larian do not take their fantasy world very seriously, and there are a lot of goofy jokes in the text. As ever, humor is subjective, and your mileage may vary, but I thought the jokiness was… OK. A couple laughs, mostly grins, a few eye rolls. Maybe some players were expecting the swords & so(u)rcery to be played straight; if so, I can see why they hate the writing. But I get that Larian are having fun with it, and that mostly comes through.

        (I thought there were a lot of lame jokes in The Bard’s Tale, myself, but people knew it was going for humor and popular opinion appears to be sporting about it, all told. Maybe a similar attitude is best for D: OS.)

        • Arglebargle says:

          I really dislike that attitude of ‘It’s just a horror/zombie/monster/robot movie; it doesn’t have to make sense’. No respect for the genre you are working in. So the type of humor that this game has doesn’t sit well with me personally, and is a negative to the game, imo. Your tolerance for, or enjoyment of, that sort of joking will effect that perception, of course.

          • Emeraude says:

            In the case of Larian in general (haven’t played OS, but it is par for the course with their games), I think it’s more a voluntarily naive and regressive take on the genre; they’re not trying to tell a great story, they’re trying to emulate the feel of that pen and paper RPG campaign you thought was so awesome when you were twelve.

            It’s not so much disrespect as half bemused half disabused celebration of something that is acknowledged as not being very serious, nor needing to.

            If you’re sensitive to the charm of that particular take, it works decently enough. If not though, it can totally kill the mood.

          • DrManhatten says:

            Well I don’t see your point as in Bard’s Tale it is absolutely deliberate. The person you play is an anti-hero so it fits the perfectly well that the narrator is having a laugh about him and his story in the game. In Divinity yes there are some more or less witty jokey dialogs especially if you read all the tombstones in the game but I think thats in place if you spend so much time to read all the tombstones in a game you might as well be laughed at :D. But I guess for some people life isn’t just serious enough that they need extra.

          • Juke says:

            For what it’s worth, I wasn’t knocking The Bard’s Tale as a bad game, just that its humor was hit-and-miss for me, and might be considered more of a success by some players than others. Divinity: Original Sin is similar in that connecting with the humor is subjective, which is why I think opinions are diverse on how well it is written. I tend to agree with Esmeraude, that the story makes sense within its own world; I don’t think it’s a case of the writers taking a pass because “fantasy stories are passe, we cleverly sidestep that by being terrible.” I like D:OS and am happy to have backed it for 2 copies, but yeah, it marches to the beat of its own drum with respect to the tone of how the story is told.

        • derbefrier says:

          I dont mind the story. ITs goofy at times and irreverent at others but its generally easy to ignore and pick up the important bits if you find yourself rolling your eyes to the back of your head. Its been hit and miss for me. At first i was really enjoying the story it was kinda refreshing to play an rpg that didnt take itself too seriously but now i find myself quickly scanning and trying to move on. not the worst story in video game history but not the the best either. Its a fantastic game overall though.

      • WiggumEsquilax says:

        Now that Larian has made some dough, maybe they’ll release the Divinity: Original Sin: We Sold A Lot Of Copies, So Now We Have Enough Money To Hire Writers: DLC.
        D:OS:WSALOCSNWHEMTHW:DLC, coming late 2014. Delayed to mid 2015.

  15. OddsAgainst says:

    Here’s hoping it slips to 14/9 so I can feel like I got something for my birthday

  16. sege says:

    “the version on Steam Early Access is open to everyone who backed the Kickstarter with enough cash to get a copy of the finished game”

    I thought this was the common impression, but it’s not true. I’m a backer, but one of the stingy ones who only paid enough to get a digital copy of the game and that hasn’t entitled me to beta access.

    • Maritz says:

      You’ve had access to the beta since 20th June. Linky. I backed at the same level as you, but personally I’m waiting for the full release before diving in.

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        strangeloup says:

        Pleasingly, this is also available for backers of Torment: Tides of Numenera who chose to also get a digital copy of Wasteland 2. It’s a bigger download (Steam sez about 20GB) than I currently have space for on my games drive though, alas.

      • sege says:

        Crikey, what a pleb. Thanks Maritz.
        I will also wait for the full release, but that is a nice thing for them to do.
        Now…is my willpower up to the task!

  17. adeptacheese says:

    these guys really love enormous billboards