We're only a few months out from the launch of Doom Eternal, but in a parallel universe players might've already blasted their way through id Software's demon-slaying sequel.
Originally slated for launch in November 2019, the studio chose to push that date back to March 2020 so it could add some extra polish and tighten the screws.
According to the game's executive producer Marty Stratton, who was speaking to VG247, it was a decision that helped Doom Eternal become the "best game we've ever made," but one that didn't negate the need for crunch.
Crunch is an issue that has plagued the games industry for some time, and generally results in developers working long hours in order to meet looming deadlines at the expense of their own wellbeing.
Speaking about state of Doom Eternal's production leading up to the delay, Stratton revealed the dev team were "crunching pretty hard" during 2019, and that while the delay took a bit of the pressure off, it also resulted in the team pushing even harder.
"We were crunching pretty hard most of last year. It goes in phases," he commented. "We’ll have one group of people crunching so the next group of people are teed up properly. As they get done, they may need to crunch a little bit.
"We work very hard and we’ll put in extra time to do that. Sometimes when we just get the extra time we do it anyways because we want it to be that much better. [A delay] takes a little bit of the steam and pressure out but it’s almost one of those things where we’ll push it even harder to get even more just as tight as it possibly can be."
Earlier this week Cyberpunk 2077 developer CD Projekt Red also admitted it expected "some degree" of crunch following its decision to delay the highly anticipated RPG, but added it would try to limit the practice.