Last week, Xbox fans looking forward to playing some exclusive first party games this Fall were dealt an unfortunate hand when Bethesda announced delays for its titles Redfall and Starfield.
Originally, Microsoft's recently acquired Bethesda studios had planned to have Redfall, the vampire-themed open world shooter, released in mid 2022 with Starfield, the space-led RPG following in November 2022.
Unfortunately, for fans, the games production schedules have slipped and Bethesda alerted the gaming community last week that could expect Redfall and Starfield in 2023 instead of 2022.
With Bethesda now fully entrenched in the Xbox gaming family of studios and road mapped title releases, head of the division Phil Spencer took to Twitter to apologize on behalf of Bethesda explaining that while the decision to announced the delays was "hard on teams", he supports giving developers time to "release great games."
These decisions are hard on teams making the games & our fans. While I fully support giving teams time to release these great games when they are ready, we hear the feedback. Delivering quality & consistency is expected, we will continue to work to better meet those expectations. https://t.co/mIfXGd3rui
— Phil Spencer (@XboxP3) May 12, 2022
With two headline titles sidelined until 2023, many frustrated gamers and fans have begun souring on the idea that Microsoft learned from its historical dearth of exclusive offerings, and maybe about to repeat an unwelcome patterned.
Despite gains in expanding Xbox Live subscriptions and Game Pass adoption, Microsoft still appears to be shackled by the "exclusive" rhetoric of many gaming communities and high-profile delays such as the recent Bethesda announcement only help to recast 2013 perceptions for some.
Without an official E3 planned for this year, Microsoft will need be a part of or host its own digital gaming showcase to presumably assuage concerns about the delay by highlighting other games coming to the platform in 2022.