WWE 2K22 is officially delayed until March 2022, and WWE is reportedly not happy about the decision. According to insider sources, the game’s delay was the subject of numerous meetings between WWE and publisher 2K. Specifically, 2K and developer Visual Concepts were pushing for a delay after several planned members of the roster left WWE, which required the studio to update the game.
Those same sources at Sports Gamers Online state that problems began to arise after the release of WWE 2K20 released in 2019. The game was so broken and buggy that Sony began issuing refunds to disgruntled fans. Though “disappointed” by the results, 2K nonetheless “remained optimistic” about the future of the franchise. However, rumors also later began to surface about the possible cancellation of the next game, WWE 2K21, before 2K officially confirmed the cancellation, replaced instead by the arcadey Battlegrounds.
In the same year, 2K Sports had reportedly been in talks with WWE over a possible split. Though the two companies had signed a multi-year partnership agreement in 2016, sources say that WWE has mentioned the possibility of working with other companies. The wrestling company has also made it clear that the partnership’s continuation hinges on the success of the upcoming WWE 2k22, so much so that it has been affecting development at Visual Concepts.
Once source said:
It was like threats to cancel cable. Threats would come out of them claiming to have interest from one company here or there. I don’t know how credible that was though, or just idle threats.
For better or for worse, the new March 2022 release window gives developers at Visual Concepts more time to polish up the game and make any adjustments to the roster as needed. However, sources also note that the studio is already “pinched, underfunded and understaffed compared to the past”. The studio is also already working on the NBA 2K series of games—another yearly release. One source commented on the drop in morale, stating, “It just hasn’t been a fun place to be…Second guessing happens constantly because of a desperation to get things right.”[Source: SGO]
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