Paradox Interactive has announced that long-awaited RPG sequel Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 will be delayed beyond 2021. In addition, previous developer Hardsuit Labs - which consisted partly of staff who worked on the original game - will no longer be working on Bloodlines 2 going forward.
Why has Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 been delayed again?
The troubled development history of Bloodlines 2 is well-known. Since the game was announced in March 2019, it's been subject to two separate delays and has seen original narrative designer Brian Mitsoda kicked off the project. Now, it seems Paradox wants to wipe the slate completely clean. In its year-end report, Paradox says Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 will no longer launch in 2021. The studio says this is in order to give developers the time required to "achieve our quality goals" and create well-received experiences.
In addition, Paradox has confirmed that original Bloodlines 2 developer Hardsuit Labs will no longer be working on the project. In a Twitch stream, Paradox's Ebba Ljungerud says it's been a "tough couple of months" deciding what to do with the game. Nevertheless, Paradox is convinced this is "the right way forward" to give Bloodlines 2 what it needs to make it to market. Paradox's Alexander Bricca says the new studio - which will be announced in the coming months - will "continue to build on what Hardsuit Labs has built", so it won't be a complete reboot of development.
When will Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 release?
Unfortunately, we simply don't know when the new release date will be. Paradox is very careful to avoid stating that the game will launch in 2022; instead, the studio simply says the game is delayed beyond 2021. It may be some time before we hear more about when Bloodlines 2 will launch. While the game hasn't been cancelled, Ljungerud says Paradox would rather cancel a game after taking a risk than never start development at all. She says it would be "a bigger failure for us, I think, not to dare to start projects" than to cancel them. This doesn't mean Bloodlines 2 will be cancelled, but it seems Paradox wouldn't be shy to cancel it if development wasn't progressing well.
We'll likely find out more about what studio Paradox Interactive will be working with in the coming weeks and months. Stay tuned for more info on this. Here's hoping the game can overcome its troubled development history - as well as that of its franchise as a whole - and deliver a solid RPG experience in the end. We'll bring you more on this as soon as we get it.
What studio would you like to see working on Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2? Let us know in the comments below!