According to Erik Odeldahl, EA DICE’s Design Director, the release date for Mirror’s Edge Catalyst has been moved from its original May 26 perch. The game will now be released in North America on June 7 and in Europe on June 9. It’s not really a rage-inducing delay, but it does put a dent on the excitement meter of people who were hoping to get a copy of the game at the end of May.
But rest assured that the reasons for the delay are very much to ensure the final product delivered is of the highest quality possible. According to the news, which was posted on the game’s official website, one of the reasons is that the game’s Social Play feature required the use of a new online technology and that it’s something they want “to play flawlessly”. The Social Play feature is the game’s equivalent of multiplayer. But instead of having the usual cooperative and competitive modes, Social Play boasts an asynchronous gameplay wherein the game world of each connected player will be affected by every player’s actions.
Another reason for the 2-week delay is that Electronic Arts “want[s] to make sure [they] have the opportunity and time to address player feedback from the Closed Beta”. Initial player reactions and reviews to a just-released game are crucial to how it will perform in the market, as word-of-mouth is more valuable than the typical marketing campaign. So give EA credit for taking extra time to listen to players’ feedback and allot a window to address potential problems or bugs. It’s a much safer approach than, let’s say, addressing the problems post-release, by which time the game had already taken a backlashing.
Mirror’s Edge Catalyst actually serves as a reboot of the series, instead of a prequel/sequel, and will focus on badass female protagonist Faith Connor’s origins. Like the first game, Faith Connors will only have her fists for weapons and her wide range of parkour skills to travel around Glass City, the game’s setting. But unlike the first game, Mirror’s Edge Catalyst does away with the linear gameplay and features an open-world environment.