Rockstar games has announced that Grand Theft Auto V will be released on 17 September, apologising for a four month delay caused by the gaming needing 'a little more polish'.
Most pundits expected the highly-anticipated game to arrive in the second quarter of 2013 so that it did not have to compete with the pre-Christmas rush, but now a September release puts it just months before the next generation of PlayStation and Xbox consoles are expected to go on sale.
A notice on Rockstar's website reads:
"Today, we have an official release date to share with you: Grand Theft Auto V will arrive in stores on September 17, 2013.
"We know this is about four months later than originally planned and we know that this short delay will come as a disappointment to many of you, but trust us, it will be worth the extra time. GTAV is a massively ambitious and complex game and it simply needs a little more polish to be of the standard we and, more importantly, you require."
The statement continues: "To all Grand Theft Auto fans, please accept our apologies for the delay, and our promise that the entire team here is working very hard to make the game all it can be. We are doing all we can to help ensure it will meet if not exceed your expectations come September - we thank you for your support and patience."
It was originally thought that GTAV would arrive in May, which tallies with Rockstar's apology for a four month delay setting the game back to September.
Rockstar founder Sam Houser said: "Grand Theft Auto V continues to push the series forward in new ways; Rockstar North are creating our deepest, most beautiful and most immersive world yet.
"We are very excited for people to learn more about the game in the coming months."