UPDATE #2: Skybound Entertainment announced today, February 26, 2019, that it was terminating its partnership with Starbreeze Studios, cancelling OVERKILL's The Walking Dead on consoles for good.
UPDATE: 505 Games has since released a statement saying that the console version of OVERKILL's The Walking Dead is not canceled, but delayed. The full statement is below, followed by the original story.
We just wanted to clear the position on the OVERKILL’s The Walking Dead on console and confirm that the game has not been cancelled, purely postponed whilst development is on-going. We will share further news as soon as possible.— 505 Games (@505_Games) February 20, 2019
Following an incredibly disappointing launch on PC back in November 2018, the delayed console releases of OVERKILL's The Walking Dead appear to have been cancelled by publishers Starbreeze Studios and 505 Games. This is likely crushing for those PS4 and Xbox One players who have been faithfully waiting for Overkill Software to send the game their way, but it seems these console players' patience has been in vain.
Meanwhile, many are likely confused to see a game they thought had already been released get cancelled after the fact, and their confusion is quite warranted if they stopped paying attention after OVERKILL's The Walking Dead was rightfully lambasted as a buggy, clunky mess upon launch. The initial 2018 PC launch, published by Starbreeze Studios, was not only a critical failure, but a financial one, as well. Reports of the game's dismal quality effectively drowned out news that it had been delayed on consoles until 2019 by 505 Games, who was responsible for the publication of the game's console releases.
It comes as a bit of a surprise, then, that PS4 users who pre-ordered the game digitally recently were notified by the PlayStation Store that the game has reportedly been cancelled. First shared online in a screenshot by Reddit user PirateBlankFoul on the OVERKILL's The Walking Dead subreddit, the brief notice thanks players for their pre-orders before unceremoniously stating:
"The publisher has notified us that the game is cancelled. As a result, we have withdrawn the current pre-order from the PlayStation Store and will cancel all pre-orders. You will receive a refund to your original payment source within 5-7 business days."
It almost goes without saying that this is almost definitely not the way that players who pre-purchased a full-price game want to learn about its apparent cancellation. While notice of OVERKILL's The Walking Dead's cancellation has yet to be given to Xbox One buyers, common sense dictates that 505 Games would not silently opt to make the game exclusive to one console or the other (and certainly not the less successful one of the two) so late after the initial delay. So far, neither publisher nor developer Overkill Software have made any statements on the matter, but players can expect updates on these developments when the PlayStation Store's claim is inevitably confirmed or denied.
OVERKILL's The Walking Dead has been an overall disaster for all parties involved, and now players who have yet to even get their hands on the product have felt the game's contaminating touch before even getting their clamoring hands on the thing. Originally unveiled with a series of gripping and visually beautiful cinematic trailers that ultimately proved to represent nothing offered in the final release (in a similar manner to last generation's slightly less disappointing Dead Island), OVERKILL's The Walking Dead is yet another shambling lesson to players that they should not take pre-release marketing material that doesn't show gameplay at face value. Waiting PS4 and Xbox One players who were willing to wade through the refuse of the game's putrid reception on PC and chose to pre-order anyway likely had their reasons, but to think that some of those with active pre-orders were not still hoping for the gritty, character-driven experience promised by the launch trailers would be wishful thinking, indeed. With the game's highly probable cancellation, even those who did their research and were prepared to accept the game for its flaws and all will now be equally disappointed.