Fans of Hollow Knight Silksong were disappointed to learn that the game’s release has been delayed to the second half of 2023. This news also concerned at least one other indie Metroidvania developer, who believes that the game’s release will increase competition for the tail end of the year.
Competition and Concerns
Enrique Colinet, lead level designer of The Game Kitchen, expressed his concern about the release date of Silksong. He noted that the game is now much closer to the late summer release date of Blasphemous 2, the promising sequel to one of the most gruesome Metroidvanias around. Colinet joked about how he is legally allowed to publicly display a panic attack in game development.
In his follow-up comments, Colinet clarified that “It’s not a direct issue with sales, it’s about presence in media and social media. Releasing too close to Silksong will overshadow our presence and will slow down our growth. Silksong is an unbeatable product, so better to stay away from its release, especially if we share a genre.”
Interestingly, he noted that the original Blasphemous once faced similar headwinds: “Back then we were way more concerned about Bloodstained eating us. In the end, Bloodstained launched three months prior to our game, so everything worked fine.”
Stiff Competition and Success
This kind of overlap is not new in the gaming industry. The Horizon series, for example, often arrives shortly before other hotly anticipated open-world games devour the public’s attention. However, stiff competition doesn’t necessarily stop multiple games from finding success within the same genre, both at and after launch. The Horizon series recently topped 32 million units sold.
It remains to be seen just how close the release dates of Silksong and Blasphemous 2 will be, and if any plans will be shifted to account for the overlap. In any case, fans of Metroidvanias can look forward to two promising sequels later this year.