How Does February's Packed Release Schedule Compare To Gaming's Other Big Months?
Next year’s slate of games looks spectacular! But unlike most years, a ton of the games we’re excited about already have a release date, coming just a couple of months after the prime holiday season. February 2022 is currently looking like one of the most stacked months in gaming ever, reminding us of the biggest and best weeks of the fall. We thought it’d be fun to compare the upcoming 28-day gauntlet, which is gaining more killers every day, to massive release calendars of gaming’s past. First, let’s take a look at what we have to look forward to this February.
The month starts out strong with the Life is Strange Remasted Collection on February 1, followed shortly behind by Dying Light 2 Stay Human, Techland’s open-world zombie RPG, on February 4. OlliOlli World from Roll7 lands February 8, the same day as the promising martial-arts-focused Sifu.
Honestly, it’s hard to find these kinds of blockbuster months in the last decade. Most companies became savvier about laying claim to a certain month or week, avoiding competition that may cut into precious sales. The closest week after week assault without a console release happened in October 2018, which positioned a hefty handful of big games to capitalize on the holiday rush, anchored by arguably the year’s biggest release yet in Red Dead Redemption 2. Like this upcoming February, there was also a similar spread of exciting remasters and intriguing indie games to anticipate.
October 2018 Releases:
- Forza Horizon 4 – October 2
- Mega Man 11 – October 2
- Assassin’s Creed Odyssey – October 5
- Super Mario Party – October 5
- Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 – October 12
- LEGO DC Super-Villains – October 16
- Starlink: Battle for Atlas ~ October 16
- Return of the Obra Dinn – October 18
- Soulcalibur VI – October 19
- Red Dead Redemption 2 – October 26
So why are we seeing a holiday season’s rush of games so soon after the start of 2022? In some cases, games are pushed to the beginning of a new calendar year to show a financial return before the end of the fiscal year, which usually concludes at the end of March. That, combined with development complications due to the pandemic over the last two years, there may not be a better option for companies right now than to launch their products and improve the numbers for this current 12 month period. February was once home to the release of the new Saints Row before it was bumped until August. Though, moving out of the way of a Horizon or Elden Ring may not be an option for organizations that rely on their bottom line looking good year over year. Hell, look at the ever-growing list of games now with release dates in March, which is starting to look like a repeat of the stacked which precedes it.
Which months or seasons do you remember having an almost impossible deluge of releases? Are you in favor of having release schedules this packed just after the holidays, or would you like them to spread out more throughout the year? Let us know in the comments!
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