Short and Sweet 24: 2016 – The Year of Development Hell?

Many people in the UK and America have reached the general consensus that 2016 has been an awful year.

But whilst the political world has been undergoing tumultuous and terrifying changes, the video game industry has continued going strong. Interestingly enough, we’re seeing three games this year (bar any last-minute catastrophes) that many consigned to vaporware having been languishing in development hell.

Final Fantasy XV (announced as Final Fantasy Versus XIII in 2006), The Last Guardian (first announced in 2007), and Owlboy (released November 1st) have all been in the works for roughly a decade – an eternity in game development terms, even compared to the 3-5 year cycles of many big AAA games. Each game was massively hyped upon reveal before disappearing behind closed doors as issues set in, leading many observers to assume that, like too many reveals, they would never be heard of again.

What are the chances, then, that all three would be released within all but a month of each other?

Owlboy released this week on November 1st, whilst Final Fantasy XV is finally due on November 28th after last-minute delays pushed back a September release. And last but not least, The Last Guardian will launch on December 6th.

On top of this, two more long-awaited games have finally received 2017 release dates: the action-RPG Ni-Oh (first announced in 2004) and the more recent but somewhat-plagued Persona 5.

Is 2016 the year that the gates of development hell are shut? Will the games it belches forth in 2016 fall short or surprise everyone? Let us know what you think in the comments!

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