Suicide Squad: Kill The Justice League is the next game, after more than five years, from Rocksteady Studios. Rocksteady has been well-known for their stellar work on the Batman Arkham games, and fans have been eager to see what they’re working on. But fans will have to wait until 2023 to see that new game. “We’ve made the difficult decision to delay Suicide Squad: Kill The Justice League to Spring 2023,” said Sefton Hill for the studio. The game was originally slated to release at some point during 2022, pushing it towards an extra year in development.
Whether this affects the final game in an unforeseen manner is hard to say. On one hand, an extra year of bug-fixing can’t be a bad thing. It’s possible that the combination of internal issues and COVID-19 significantly affected forward progress on the game. As such, it’s easy to see why the game got delayed. We’ve seen precious little of the final game, so it could be in pretty rough shape.
So what internal issues could have caused this? Simple, the typical toxicity of game development. There may be more behind the scenes going that may have contributed to these issues. The Guardian reported in August 2020 that the studio had failed to address issues related to sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior directed at many female members of staff. Such revelations were revealed in an open letter to the studio heads, signed by many of those affected.
The report detailed pervasive problems at the studio, including internal communications which included “slurs regarding the transgendered community”, “discussing a woman in a derogatory or sexual manner with other colleagues”, and sexual harassment “in the form of unwanted advances, leering at parts of a woman’s body, and inappropriate comments in the office”. Rocksteady acknowledged it had received complaints about sexual discrimination and harassment. They responded in a typical manner, by making a public statement, claiming that they had addressed the issues.
“In 2018 we received a letter from some of our female employees expressing concerns they had at that time, and we immediately took firm measures to address the matters that were raised. Over the subsequent two years we have carefully listened to and learned from our employees, working to ensure every person on the team feels supported. In 2020 we are more passionate than ever to continue to develop our inclusive culture, and we are determined to stand up for all of our staff.”
Now there may be something going on that only the studio knows about. It’s entirely possible that the game is just in poor shape in terms of performance for other reasons. But really, it’s hard to see how such a shift caused by internal strife couldn’t affect development.