Telltale Games has announced that The Wolf Among Us 2 has been delayed and will now arrive in 2024. In a statement to IGN, the team explains it wants to avoid crunching the team and releasing an unfinished product as it moves development into Unreal Engine 5.
Telltale released a brief message on Twitter announcing the delay, but CEO Jamie Ottilie shares more context with IGN. Ottilie discusses the challenges of relaunching the studio in 2019, which were then compounded when the COVID-19 pandemic began the following year. That includes announcing the game when the studio was still staffing up to help secure early funding. Despite those early hurdles, Ottilie states that development has been going well since then, but the team recently decided it wants to adopt Unreal 5 to take advantage of the engine’s new features. Unfortunately, that meant having to redo a lot of the work that had been created in Unreal 4.
With such a big change, Ottilie explains that the only way The Wolf Among Us 2 could still arrive this year would be either to launch it in a less-polished state (which the team wants to avoid given its high expectations) or to overwork the staff. Given that the old Telltale was infamous for crunch and burnout, Ottilie is adamant about avoiding the same practice with this iteration of the studio.
“I’ve done [crunch], and I don’t want to do it again, and it’s not fair to ask it,” Ottilie tells IGN. “You can’t plan a business around it. So yeah, part of it is about maintaining a healthy work culture. We don’t want to burn out our good people.”
The Wolf Among Us 2 was announced at the 2019 Game Awards and will be an episodic title like its predecessor. However, Telltale is developing each episode at the same time, so the entire series will be complete when the first installment launches. You can watch the first full trailer from last year here. The studio’s other project, The Expanse: A Telltale Series, is still slated for this year.