I was in the local GameStop with my son earlier today and was told the bad news that “No Man’s Sky” was delayed yet again by the developer, Hello Games. This is by far the worst gaming news I’d heard in years.
Pre-Orders are a great mechanism, in that they help the Developer determine ahead of time what the popularity of the game is (“do I need to hire another 10 programmers to ensure we complete this game on-time?”), and provide a good estimate of exactly how many game boxes they’ll need to publish to serve current demand on the actual release date. GameStop offers Pre-Orders for $5.00, which thankfully goes towards the total price of the game. While this type of purchase is not backed by a written and legally binding contract, I don’t think anyone would dispute that a pre-order is a type of contract agreement. If someone pays the total Pre-Order amount, then they get first shot at picking-up a copy of the game the night before the set general release date. When I bought this Pre-Order (and paid the entirety of the amount owed), the General Release Date was scheduled for June 21st.