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God of War Ragnarok PS5 Sequel Likely Delayed to 2023, Per PlayStation CEO

Author: WarstuTime: 2024-01-04 10:40:00

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PlayStation CEO Hints at God of War Ragnarok Delay

In a recent interview, PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan suggested that the highly anticipated sequel to 2018's God of War may be delayed beyond its originally planned 2022 release. While not outright confirming a delay, Ryan's comments indicate that God of War Ragnarok will likely miss its expected launch window.

Specifically, when discussing upcoming PlayStation exclusives, Ryan stated: "The next year or so is going to see the release of Horizon Forbidden West...and God of War Ragnarök." The vague time frame of "next year or so" implies the Norse epic may not hit its previously communicated target of 2022.

Vague Release Window Suggests 2022 or 2023 Launch

The core of Ryan's statement centers on the unclear release target of "next year or so" for God of War Ragnarok. This shows Sony is reluctant to commit to 2022 for Kratos's next adventure, even though marketing material originally pegged next year as the planned launch. By saying the sequel could arrive anytime in the next year or so, Ryan leaves the door open for God of War Ragnarok to slip to 2023. The non-committal time frame gives the development team at Sony Santa Monica extra breathing room to polish and perfect the game without the pressure of hitting a predetermined release date.

Horizon Forbidden West Also Lacks Concrete Date

Alongside the God of War commentary, Ryan similarly failed to provide a firm launch window for Horizon Forbidden West. The Horizon sequel is slated for release in time for holiday 2021, but developer Guerrilla Games has not given a definite date. Ryan echoing the lack of a concrete timeframe for Horizon Forbidden West shows Sony is being intentionally ambiguous with several of its heavy-hitting exclusives. Rather than promising launch dates they may not be able to keep, the company is keeping things open-ended for the time being.

God of War Team Won't Rush Sequel

Given the runaway success of 2018's God of War, which sold over 19.5 million copies as of 2021, there is understandably tremendous anticipation for the follow-up. This puts immense pressure on Sony Santa Monica to deliver another exceptional, genre-defining experience that meets fans' high expectations.

However, according to Ryan, the team working on the sequel will not be rushed to launch the game before it is truly ready. He reaffirmed PlayStation's commitment to only releasing titles when they reach the desired level of quality.

High Standards Set by Original God of War

A key reason Sony appears willing to delay God of War Ragnarok is the glowing reception to 2018's series reboot. God of War exceeded nearly all expectations in terms of critical acclaim, commercial success, compelling narrative, and satisfying gameplay.

The title earned a 94 average on Metacritic, signaling near universal praise from gaming outlets. Moreover, God of War marked a dramatic evolution for the franchise, introducing a new over-the-shoulder camera perspective and greater emphasis on grounded, emotional storytelling.

Because of the remarkably high bar set by the 2018 release, Sony Santa Monica faces immense pressure to stick the landing with the sequel. Releasing an unfinished or rushed follow-up risks tainting fans' goodwill and squandering the godlike momentum generated by the reboot.

Pandemic Caused Development Setbacks

The final key factor potentially pushing God of War Ragnarok outside of 2022 is pandemic-related delays impacting many game studios. As Ryan noted, the ongoing COVID-19 crisis has only recently allowed PlayStation's creative partners to fully return to work in a normal capacity.

The shift to remote work and restrictive lockdowns almost certainly slowed progress on Ragnarok considerably over the past two years. Getting motion capture, voice acting, playtesting and other essential development done was likely extremely challenging.

Accounting for these pandemic-induced disruptions, Sony seems wise to leave itself scheduling flexibility in case the dev team needs extra time get back on track following 2020's unprecedented events.

Conclusion: 2023 Looks Increasingly Likely for Sequel

Given the non-committal messaging from Ryan regarding its release timing, God of War Ragnarok slipping to 2023 appears more probable than ever. Between the pressure to meet expectations, pandemic headaches, and desire to avoid a rushed or unfinished product, the stars are aligning for Kratos to sit out 2022.

While fans may be disappointed to wait an extra year, Sony's willingness to delay such a high-profile title shows the company has learned from Cyberpunk 2077's disastrous launch. Whenever Ragnarok does arrive, players can likely expect an epic, content-rich adventure on par with the acclaimed 2018 chapter.


Q: When will God of War Ragnarok release?
A: It looks increasingly likely the release will be in 2023 rather than 2022 based on vague comments from PlayStation's CEO.

Q: Why was the sequel delayed?
A: The development faced pandemic-related setbacks. The team also doesn't want to rush the game and underdeliver.

Q: How does this impact Horizon Forbidden West?
A: That game also lacks a concrete release date now, suggesting potential delays as well.