The standard modus operandi for new releases in Microsoft's Xbox Live Arcade Wednesday program has become a late-Tuesday announcement of a game to be released in the wee hours of Wednesday morning.
Microsoft deviated from that formula last night, when the clock struck midnight and beyond with nary a new Arcade offering to be found online. However, Xbox Live director of programming Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb did confirm on his blog late Tuesday night that Midway's Defender had been planned for release, but was held up by last-minute certification issues. Hryb said at the time that "the team is working as hard as they can to get it into your hands as soon as possible on Wednesday."
Wednesday afternoon, a Microsoft representative told GameSpot the company was "just wrapping up some details" on the title. However, Defender was still not available on the Marketplace as of press time.
The Xbox Live Arcade version of Scramble and the demo of 2K Games' Prey also ran into certification issues. Scramble was eventually released a week after the certification problem was confirmed, while the Prey demo found its way online about nine days after it was originally expected to appear.
[UPDATE 6:01 p.m.] A Microsoft representative has told GameSpot that Defender has made it through certification and should be available tonight on the Xbox Live Marketplace. However, it was still not available as of press time. When it does arrive, it will sell for 400 Microsoft points ($5).