Beginnings and delays

This is it then, the first post I’m writing for this little experiment. I’m going to start this off on a bit of a sad note, since Blizzard broke the news yesterday that Diablo III would not be able to make a 2011 release date after all. This is what Blizzard’s Mike Morhaime had to say on the matter:

We commonly use the term “soon” when referring to Blizzard releases, because we know that no matter how hard we’re working to reach a target, we’re not going to compromise and launch a game before it’s ready. For Diablo III, we were aiming to launch by the end of 2011. As we’re announcing globally today, our new target for the game is early 2012.

While this news might not be a complete surprise, I know that many of you were hopeful that Diablo III would ship this year. We were too. However, this week we pulled together people from all of the teams involved with the game to decide whether we felt it would be ready before the end of December, and we grudgingly came to the conclusion that it would not. Ultimately, we feel that to deliver an awesome Diablo sequel that lives up to our expectations and yours as well, we should take a little more time and add further polish to a few different elements of the game.

The upside of today’s announcement is that we will be running the beta test longer than we initially planned, which will allow us to invite more of you who have opted in. (source)

Some sites are actually presenting this as good news, saying that Diablo III ‘now has a release date’. But for those of us who have been paying closer attention, considering the recent start of the ‘friends and family’ beta and Jay Wilson’s continued optimism regarding the push for a 2011 release date, this is actually pretty damn disappointing. Though we should have known better.

So now what? Well, I think it’s safe to say we can stop fantasizing about a little Diablo III by the fireplace this Christmas and start wondering what ‘early 2012′ actually means. In the meantime keep checking your accounts for the beta and have a little cry about it every time it isn’t there.