Starfield's Delay Throws a Wrench in Avowed Release Window Hopes

Xbox Game Studios has a lot of mysterious games in production, including Obsidian Entertainment's Avowed. In some respects, the game isn't a total mystery, since fans know that it's rooted in Obsidian's Pillars of Eternity franchise, which provides a lot of clues about lore and potential story threads in Avowed. For the most part, though, fans lack a clear picture how Avowed plays or when it might release. Some rumors have offered potential answers to the latter question, and although these answers vary, multiple projections have suggested that Avowed might manage to release sometime in late 2022 or in early 2023.

In the current state of the game industry, however, nothing is certain. Bethesda's new RPG Starfield, which was poised to be an Xbox blockbuster in 2022, is the latest game to get delayed in 2023, joining major peers like the Zelda: Breath of the Wild sequel. Not only does that create a longer wait for Starfield, but it raises questions about when Avowed and other Xbox RPGs might manage to release in the near future. Starfield could serve as an obstacle to Avowed and its peers unless Microsoft carefully manages release schedules for all the hotly demanded RPGs that Xbox Game Studios has in development.

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The Timing of Avowed and Starfield's Releases

In November 2021, an Nvidia GeForce leak provided fans with a potential release date for Avowed: December 7, 2022. Although this was likely just a placeholder date, it still seemed like it could hint at a winter 2022 release for Avowed, although Starfield's November release made that seem a little doubtful. Expectations changed slightly when Microsoft insider and Windows Central reporter Jez Corden projected a possible early 2023 release for Avowed, based on the state of the game. Corden's educated guess at a release window seemed plausible enough, since it would let Avowed dodge Starfield's launch and provided Obsidian with plenty of time to finish the game.

However, now that Starfield will release somewhere in early 2023, it seems less likely that Avowed will release at around the same time. Bethesda is a titan among RPG developers, so Microsoft will probably try to spotlight Starfield as much as possible because it's Bethesda's first game since Microsoft acquired the company. In other words, other Xbox exclusive RPGs probably shouldn't release close to Starfield if possible. Its delay therefore makes it far less likely that Avowed will release in early 2023. Starfield needs to be as free from distractions as possible.

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Possible Surprises for Avowed's Launch

Hopefully Microsoft and Bethesda's willingness to delay Starfield stems partially from pleasant surprises for other Microsoft RPGs. For instance, if Avowed releases in early December 2022 after all, then it could fill the void left by Starfield without stealing its thunder. Avowed has been public knowledge for about two years, so Obsidian may have had enough time to finish Avowed before 2023. Alternatively, if Avowed gets pushed into the middle of 2023 to accommodate Starfield, maybe Fable will release sooner than expected in order to satisfy demand for an Xbox RPG.

Obsidian hasn't guaranteed anything about Avowed's launch, of course; past rumors about the game's status could be far less accurate than fans might like. Avowed's fate relative to Starfield can only be confirmed when Obsidian announces some major details. Starfield's role in the upcoming Xbox-Bethesda showcase is uncertain now, but Avowed could make an appearance and reveal all kinds of major information, including a release window. Until that happens, though, the fate of Starfield and past Avowed rumors will continue to raise questions about the Xbox game release schedule, which is full of games that have avoided the limelight. The more light the Xbox-Bethesda showcase sheds on Starfield, Avowed, and their peers, the better.

Avowed is in development for PC and Xbox Series X/S.

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