Ghost Games has confirmed that the next installment of Need for Speed will not be released this year, despite it traditionally being an annual series. But before you get too worried, no, the series hasn't been written off – you can expect to to see the next Need for Speed game in 2015 according to the developer, which is apparently "deep in development".
The announcement was made at a post-earnings release conference today, where EA declared that an extra year of development has been allotted to Ghost Games to produce the next Need for Speed game.
“We are already deep in development on our next game and want to make this promise to you: we will listen to you. We’re going to give you the game you’ve been asking for. It will be the game you deserve, but to do that will take us some time,” Ghost Games' general manager Marcus Nilsson said.
“We’ve made the decision to not release a Need for Speed in 2014, so we can work towards a highly innovative Need for Speed in 2015. An experience built on a foundation we know you’ll greatly look forward to.”
Nilsson went on to explain how Ghost Games will not be "silent" untli then, inviting the community to “shape the future of Need for Speed.”
“We want your input on future gameplay and features we know you’re passionate about. We will keep innovating, always making sure to continue the celebration of cars and the joy they bring.”
“That’s all we can share for now but remember this is just the beginning. We’re excited and ready, so come along and join the conversation.”
Is this a hint that we can expect something at this year's E3? Need for Speed games are traditionally announced at EA's annual E3 conference, although it remains to be seen if an announcement will be made a year ahead of its release this time.
Personally, I'm all for the delay as the extra development time will only benefit the quality of the final game. Need for Speed has been notorious for rushed releases in the past, too, so it's reassuring to see Ghost Games are keen not to fall into the same trap.
Traditionally, Need for Speed is an annual series and is often passed around different developers. However, this is the first time in 12 years the series has been off the grid.
This year also marks the twentieth anniversary of the series, so it seems a shame there won't be a game to commemorate one of the longest-running racing game series of all time at this monumental milestone.