What just happened? Much to the disappointment of many, 2020 has been the year of game delays, and that trend doesn't appear to be stopping anytime soon. Following in the footsteps of Cyberpunk 2077, Watch Dogs Legion, and many other postponed titles, AAA game development studio Naughty Dog has announced that it will be delaying the release of The Last of Us Part II "indefinitely."
You read that right: the sequel to 2013's fantastic post-apocalyptic survival adventure is being pushed back to an unknown date. This is a relatively uncommon occurrence in the AAA gaming industry – typically, when a delay happens, a new release date (or at least a release window) is given shortly after.
However, the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic is proving to be far more troublesome and unpredictable than even the most highly-organized game development studios could have anticipated. Thousands of developers have been forced to work from home, which is clearly slowing down the workflow for many teams; even those with hefty funding like Naughty Dog.
A message from us about the delay of The Last of Us Part II: pic.twitter.com/aGsSRfmJ8a--- Naughty Dog (@Naughty_Dog) April 2, 2020
You can read the full statement from Naughty Dog in the tweet above, but in short, the delay was necessary due to "logistics beyond [the team's] control." We're not entirely sure what "logistics" the company is referring to here, but our money is on disruptions caused by Covid-19.
On the bright side, the statement also reveals that the game is nearly finished, and in the final stages of bug fixing and polishing. Ideally, this should mean the delay won't be very long, but we'll simply have to wait and see. Covid-19 isn't an easy virus for anyone to contend with, and we certainly hope Naughty Dog continues to prioritize the health of its workers over the making of The Last of Us Part II – no matter how excited we are to get our hands on it.