“We’re not going to put a game out before we think it’s ready to be enjoyed by fans,” says Nintendo’s senior director of corporate communications Charlie Scibetta.
The excessively charming and oddly addictive Animal Crossing has quickly become one of Nintendo’s most popular and successful current properties. As such, Animal Crossing: New Horizons for the Switch has been a hotly anticipated title for a while now. Though the game was revealed in full at E3 2019, Nintendo also announced that it would be getting delayed from its initially announced 2019 release window to an early 2020 one.
Not long afterward, Nintendo confirmed that the delay had been made so that the development team could get the game up to the expected level of quality without having to crunch. Now, they’ve given more details on why it was done. Speaking with Tech Crunch, Nintendo’s senior director of corporate communications Charlie Scibetta got to talking about the delay, saying that the development team felt it would be a disservice to put out a rushed product just to hit the expected release date. As such, though a delay was not ideal, it had to be made to ensure the game’s quality.
“We’re not going to put a game out before we think it’s ready to be enjoyed by fans,” said Scibetta. “In the case of a franchise, like Animal Crossing, that has so many loyal fans, we’d be doing them a disservice if we put out a product that was rushed.”
“So it’s a difficult decision for a company to make to move a ship date out,” he continued. “We think moving to March 20 of next year was the right decision, because we needed to give the development team enough time to make it the game we want to make.”
“That’s been the Nintendo approach from the beginning and it’s something that we’re going to continue to do,” Scibetta added. “We’re not going to rush a game out until it’s ready because we want to keep that quality bar high.”
Delaying a game by a few months isn’t something that pleases anyone involved, but hey- if we’re getting a finished, polished product as a result, and more importantly, if the developers don’t have to overwork themselves to get the product to that level, it’s ultimately all for the better.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons is out exclusively for the Nintendo Switch on March 20, 2020. Check out nearly 30 minutes of gameplay footage from the game through here.