Despite the current state of the world, many developers and game companies are hard at work to make sure their creations meet shipping dates. Folks from Bethesda, Grinding Gears, and Ubisoft have to delay updates for Fallout 76 Wastelanders, Path of Exile 2 beta, and Rainbow Six Siege respectively.
First New York Times interview was not exactly about what I would've imagined, but it does bring some good news: While we're slowed down, development on BG3 keeps on progressing and we still expect EA this year https://t.co/BvT7qCQD2V
— Swen Vincke @where? (@LarAtLarian) April 21, 2020
The next in line to feel the brunt of COVID-19 is Larian Studios, the makers of the upcoming Baldur’s Gate 3. Larian boss Swen Vincke said on New York Times that the game is remaining on track for an Early Access release this year, though work on it has been slow.
“The very first week, it went really well. Everyone had all the information they needed to just smoothly go work from home.”
He said that the challenges started mounting as the process dragged on, with employees and external partners having to make more long-term adjustments to their schedules.
“We started seeing more stress on the leads in terms of communication. We’d spend all of our days just communicating—trying to solve problems, organize things, give direction. Development is proceeding. We’re just slowed down. ”
Aspects of development like motion capture are impossible to do while working remotely, and even voice acting is tough because of inconsistencies in recording quality from place to place. Vincke said that there is no current solution for the mo-cap issue.
Ironically, COVID-19 has pushed demand for video gaming tenfold. Steam broke 20 million concurrent users just a month ago. Indie devs will also get visibility for their games; of course, it wouldn’t mean much if people don’t have money to spend on them due to job cuts and losses.