Update: Since our initial post Sony and the team at Evolution Studios have confirmed that Drive Club has been delayed until early 2014. This includes the PlayStation Plus Edition that was set to be released for free to PlayStation Plus Members on the PlayStation 4's launch day. Taking its place will be a pair of games, Resogun and Contrast, from Compulsion Games.
"DriveClub is a really ambitious racing title and the game is looking stunning. The extra time we’re giving the team means the visuals and overall experience are only going to get better. We can assure you that it will be worth the wait."
Multiple sources are reporting that Drive Club, Sony's PlayStation 4 exclusive racing game, has been delayed from the PS4's launch into spring 2014. The original source was TheSameCoin, though follow-ups by Kotaku and a semi-reliable NeoGaf commenter have also confirmed the claim. With yesterday's delay of both Ubisoft's Watch Dogs and The Crew, every launch game delay only makes the sting worse.
While there's no argument that Sony delaying a launch title for the PlayStation 4, and the console's big racing game release at that, is damaging... it's, well, not so bad. Let's be honest, will that many people be canceling their PlayStation 4 preorder if Drive Club of all games is delayed? Unlikely. Sony's still going to sell out of consoles this holiday season.
Plus, let's be honest, but in the highly competitive holiday season Drive Club would have been trounced by other racing games. Not just other racing games, but by Sony's very own racing game. Gran Turismo 6 is coming out for the PlayStation 3, a platform with a much larger install base, and there's no way Drive Club's sales wouldn't be cannibalized by that.
Finally, it's the fact the Drive Club is an unproven driving game franchise going up against huge tiles. Forza Motorsport 5 on Xbox One, Need for Speed Rivals which is multiplatform, and Gran Turismo 6 on PS3. I've played all of those games, and Drive Club was my least favorite of the bunch. Realistically speaking Drive Club deserved both additional development time and a release window that actually gave it a fair chance of being successful.
All that said, let me make absolutely clear Drive Club's delay is 100% rumor. Until there's confirmation from Sony, it's best to assume it's entirely untrue. That doesn't make anything I've said above untrue, however. With less than a month until the PlayStation 4's launch, if Sony's going to delay this thin they really should make it official fast before it turns into a PR disaster.