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I’d like to just take a moment to address this a little bit. I absolutely think that the pandemic is a valid reason for delays, though I also strongly believe there are other factors in play as to why a lot of games nowadays get delayed. This is a much bigger discussion, so I’ll just speak about the “pandemic excuse”.
Many people were uprooted from their daily routines during the pandemic, and forced to adjust to a new working environment during the development cycle of their respective projects. While some people found this transition fairly natural, many struggled with it due to the conditions of working from home being quite different from that of an office space. Not only does this affect a person’s ability to separate work and home life, but it’s also very challenging to go from seeing your friends/colleagues every day in the office to being completely isolated from them every day. The mental impact of the adjustment to working from home is often under appreciated.
This became a logistic problem too. Studios have had to quickly adapt to a new way of working. Security, IT support, equipment, well-being of staff, and all sorts of considerations had to be uprooted and changed entirely to assist people from home. This is all unprecedented, and while I think giving early confidence in regards to the progress being made during the pandemic was “jumping the gun” so to speak - it has been very difficult to judge how development would pan out in the long term during this period as well.
To add to this, more people got sick. COVID-19 is a legitimate threat to our health and even though many worked from home, a lot more people got sick on average during this period. This leads to more people on sick leave. This has also affected a lot of companies and their ability to hit deadlines.
Sometimes you need to look beyond the corporate red curtains and see the human beings working behind the scenes. We were all massively affected by the pandemic, and not just in our work lives.
I am absolutely not suggesting that you shouldn’t be requesting further explanation as to why projects get delayed - but writing the global pandemic off as an “excuse” isn’t fair to any game studio. People make games, not machines. Perhaps as an industry we can begin to give people more context as to why the pandemic has hit us hard, but I hope that I have at least given some extra insight.
This is much appreciated. It would be nice to get more honest communication from the comms team though. Hope all is well👍🏾
While we’re sharing information I’d like to reference this post which may give some extra insight into the community management side of things. Not saying your suggestion isn’t valid, but I do think what’s said here is useful information as well.