The video game industry certainly has its usual months when it releases many of the big games that debut each year. Major AAA games have primarily released during the spring and fall of each year, but that trend gradually is becoming less and less consistent, given the releases that happen during the summer months.
Last year, we saw several major games launch during the May, June, July and August months. Games such as The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, Batman Arkham Knight, Rare Replay and Gears of War: Ultimate Edition. These are just a few titles that are changing how people look at the release calendar each year, and Microsoft spoke about the latter two releasing during the month of August.
“It allowed them to be great products, have their moment in the sun, let people become aware of them, try them and let word of mouth drive them and they both did very, very well for us. I think being in that [August] window helped them a lot. Rare Replay launching in November would’ve been disastrous. With that said, this holiday we had seven AAA titles launch in that four week period and Fallout was one of our third party deal titles, so we were doing all of the co-marketing with them.
“With Battlefront, we had EA Access a week early going on. The pizza is [only] so big and you’re just slicing it in more slices and you’re not really growing the pie and so it becomes hard. I think we’ve learned and…I think Scalebound is a good example of that, ‘hey, we don’t need that title at holiday  and let’s give them enough time to realize their full ambitions as well,'” Xbox Marketing Lead Aaron Greenberg told IGN.
Rare Replay and Gears of War: Ultimate Edition were games that just about had August to themselves, with the exception of the yearly Madden release and PS4’s Until Dawn. Publishers are gradually becoming more and more willing to release their games outside of the traditional release months, which is part of the reason why we see so many big, upcoming titles slated for launch in February, March and April.
Xbox One’s Scalebound was originally announced as a 2016 title, however, Microsoft decided to push the game back into most likely sometime during the beginning of 2017. The publisher already has plenty of games that you should expect to debut this holiday such as Gears of War 4, Halo Wars 2, Sea of Thieves and more. Head on over to IGN for more from the chat they had with Greenberg.