Microsoft has laid out plans to launch Gears of War Judgement at retail in February 2013, a publishing source close to the matter has confirmed to CVG.
It is understood that an exact Europe and North America release date has not yet been finalised, though February has been earmarked as the target month.
In a statement to CVG, Microsoft said:
"We have not made any announcements updating launch timing for Gears of War: Judgment beyond early 2013. Stay tuned for new details about Gears of War: Judgment to be revealed at San Diego Comic-Con, July 12-15."
Judgement, the highly anticipated prequel to Epic Games' blockbuster trilogy, will follow the story of series mainstays Damon Baird and Augustus 'Cole Train' Cole. The project is being developed as part of a partnership between BulletStorm studio People Can Fly as well as Epic Games' in-house North Carolina team.
Microsoft shipped around 18 million copies of the Gears of War trilogy to retail, cementing the game as one of the biggest blockbusters of this generation.
Poland based outfit People Can Fly, which in 2007 Epic acquired a majority stake of, has in recent years worked on the PC edition of Gears of War and had contributed to the development of its sequel.
Yesterday, retailer ShopTo listed Gears of War Judgement for a February 8th release date, though a spokesperson later clarified to CVG that the listing was an estimate.