Mighty No. 9 has been pushed back for a third time. A spiritual successor to Mega Man backed by series co-creator Keiji Inafune, Mighty No. 9 was the first big Japanese video game crowdfunding success story, raising over $4 million back in September of 2013. The enthusiastic response to Mighty No. 9 inspired other Japanese developers to embrace Kickstarter – Koji Igarashi successfully funded his Castlevania spiritual successor Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night, and Yu Suzuki managed to raise over $6 million for Shenmue III.
Unfortunately, as is too often the case, a Kickstarter success story has led to a rocky development cycle. Mighty No. 9 was originally scheduled for April 2015, before being pushed back to September 2015 and then to February 2016. The game now has a nebulous Spring 2016 release date. Keiji Inafune took to Mighty No. 9‘s Kickstarter page to explain the latest delay and apologize…
“The reason for the delay is rooted in bugs inside the online modes, and specifically problems with matchmaking. There are two large reasons for this problem, one of them being the large number of platforms supported and the other stems from the fact that the engine we are using [Unreal Engine 3] is no longer being updated which means adjustments for matchmaking and online code are being made manually. Unfortunately, this is all a result of miscalculations on the part of us, the development staff. As a result, our fans who have been looking forward to Mighty No. 9 have been forced to wait for over half a year longer than expected, and for that we are sincerely sorry.
For this third delay of the game, we have no excuses for disappointing our fans and especially our backers once more. We want to take this chance to express our sincerest apologies to everyone who has looked forward to the release.”
It would be easier to take these multiple delays if the reasoning behind them was “We want to give you more content and/or improve the gameplay!” Instead, it seems it’s always issues related to porting, bugs, and other behind-the-scenes business stuff. It feels like the game has been more-or-less done for a year, but is just tied up in red tape and business wranglings. It’s hardly surprising that fans are starting to get frustrated.
Here’s hoping Mighty No. 9 has a more solid release date soon, and the “9” in its title doesn’t end up being the number of times it’s pushed back.