Europa, the gorgeous indie platformer about the only human awake on a terraformed moon, is delayed

Puzzle-platformer Europa has associate editor Ted Litchfield excited, and for good reason: It looks and sounds fantastic, and the demo did not disappoint. But the April 16 release date that was announced at the end of 2023 isn't going to happen—instead, it'll probably be out sometime this summer.

I say "probably" because that's what developer Helder Pinto said in the delay announcement: A new release date hasn't yet been nailed down.

"Europa began as a side project I created alone, and in the years since it has grown more than I ever could have dreamed, though we are still working in the evenings and weekends around our day jobs," Pinter wrote. "I’m very proud of what we’ve done together—which is why I can’t stand the thought of releasing the game before it’s in the condition we want it to be."

In a separate video, Pinto said the decision to delay the release was made for a few reasons, but generally speaking it comes down to wanting more time to tweak and polish the experience. 

"Game development is hard, right, and towards the later stages you realize there's a lot of little things that actually amount to a lot," he said. "There were a few things missing from the demo that we wanted to make sure we include, and we wanted to make sure those things are in the main game.

"Europa is also a very cinematic game at heart, it's the story of Z and his father Adam, and it's the story of a colonized and terraformed version of Europa. The way that you tell that story can be very nuanced, so we want to make sure we tell that story right through gameplay."

The abbreviated Newell Adage states that "suck is forever," which is why delays are generally preferable to rushed releases. I think that's especially true in the case of a game like Europa, which immediately set high expectations despite being a part-time indie project. It's already been in development for more than six years, and if six more months makes the difference between "good try" and "great game" I think most of us will be happy to wait. For now, you can get a taste of what Europa is all about courtesy of the demo, which remains available on Steam.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.