Twitter accounts for the UK's largest video game outlet, GAME, are announcing an early release for the highly anticipated DOOM Eternal amid fears of Coronavirus interfering with its planned Friday release date.
Those with pre-orders received the news through text and email that they will be able to pick up their purchase two days early, starting from 10am tomorrow.
— GAME Maidstone (@GAMEMaidstone) March 17, 2020
While there is no official word from DOOM Eternal's publisher, Bethesda, multiple regional GAME accounts - such as Maidstone, Ipswich, Glasgow and Colchester - are encouraging fans to pick up their copies on March 18th, rather than March 20th. There is no mention of COVID-19 in the tweets, however, this may be a push to sell stock before a potential enforced ban on non-essential travel across the country.
If this early release proves true, this would unfortunately mean Animal Crossing: New Horizons and Doom Eternal do not share the same release date - crushing months worth of jokes across the gaming community.
Yes this is happening. Sadly not for Animal crossing tho
— GAME Ipswich (@GAME_Ipswich42) March 17, 2020
With information scarce, it remains unclear whether this is just for reserved and pre-ordered copies of the game, or a full release. Official DOOM Eternal social media accounts still advertise a release date of March 20th. There is no news of other video game outlets, such as GameStop, taking the same actions as GAME.
Early reviews of DOOM Eternal have been positive, with the title currently sitting at 87 on Metacritic. Praises include its fast paced gameplay and challenging difficulty.