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Blizzard’s never “pressured” to release a game before it’s finished

Tuesday, 19th January 2010 20:20 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

starcraftii251

Blizzard CEO Paul Sams has said that rushing products to retail to meet financial milestones can undermine a development team’s work.

Speaking with GI.biz, Sams firmly stated that Blizzard never feels the pressure to rush a product, as doing so would “devastate a passionate development team” and heads of the publishing arm know not to even suggest it.

“If you’ve been in the games industry for any length of time and you’ve worked for a variety of companies, what you will hear from developers is that they were working on a game that they were so excited and enthusiastic about… and yet, when it got to the point where the company wanted to ship it and the game wasn’t done, that company would oftentimes make the decision to ship it anyway – because they needed to make their quarterly numbers, or whatever,” said Sams.

“So the people who have put in the blood, sweat and tears on making this game that has all the promise – which instead has to be pushed out the door – those types of experiences are pretty devastating to people.

“Developers know that when they come to Blizzard, they will get to make the game they want to make, because we let the developers decide what they’re going to make.

“They also know that we will not pull the rug out from under them – they will have ample time, budget and support to be able to deliver the game that they envisioned.

“We will not pull the rug out from under them and ship it before it’s done, so people feel that when they put their heart and soul into a game, they’ll be able to deliver the game they envisioned and there’s not going to be a situation where there are tons of compromises, we’re shipping too early and everybody does that thing where they say ‘Woulda, shoulda, coulda if we’d had the time.’”

Sams’ comments are in direct line with Blizzard’s “It’ll ship when its done” mantra- one that all consumers have come to know and love, or at the very least sigh at in appreciative frustration.

One such product fans are sighing in wait over is StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty, which was recently confirmed to have a Protoss story running alongside of the Terran campaign.

A video for it was released today, and the Beta is expected sometime this year.

The actual game could possibly arrive during Q2.

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14 Comments

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  1. Hunam

    Isn’t this like the direct opposite to comments Kotick made about taking the fun out of gaming development? That developers should understand the balance sheet at the end of the day?

    #1 5 years ago
  2. theoperator

    Bold words. They’re the only studio that can confidently afford to say that though.

    #2 5 years ago
  3. Hunam

    Exactly. Lets list the developers that make $100 million per month shall we.

    1. Blizzard.

    #3 5 years ago
  4. onlineatron

    Title should have read

    ‘Blizzard’s never “pressured” to release a game’

    Seriously, maybe this is just out of ignorance but, what games have they released in the past 2 years?

    #4 5 years ago
  5. Hunam

    Wrath of the Lich King.

    #5 5 years ago
  6. onlineatron

    Ok, again this may be through ignorance, but wasn’t that just an expansion pack to WoW?

    #6 5 years ago
  7. Gekidami

    It was. Blizzard havent released a full, new game since WoW i dont think. Though WoW does have a lot of content to it, its just a shame alot of it has a shamey, basic level editor-ish feel to it.

    #7 5 years ago
  8. onlineatron

    Damn… Yet they make all this money!

    It’s hard to bash them for being clever bastards but jeez! There are many, many, many developers who deserve that sort of recognition!

    #8 5 years ago
  9. Hunam

    To be fair and slightly unpopular, Blizzard DO deserve to be as big as they are. For the one single reason that most developers don’t get. They LOVE their fans. Not in a “our fans are great” kind of way but in a “here, lets throw them an annual convention for a nominal entry fee that doesn’t even recover the costs of hosting the convention, patch games that have been out for 12 years and generally talk to them as much as possible, listen to them and give them what they want”

    They have cultivated their fanbase, I’d image they have an entire PR department in house just for keeping the fans happy. They do actually care. Though obviously some acti spill has been caused (lan play, I mean, ffs).

    Oh, and MMO addons are basically the size of full games.

    #9 5 years ago
  10. mojo

    kotick should fuck off

    that was for u onlineatron ;)

    #10 5 years ago
  11. Grimrita

    Its hardly a challenge for Blizzard. When you make a game so uninspiring and generic no one polishes a turd better than Blizzard.

    Look at the WoW expansions. Just the same old dungeons/creatures with diffent colours and Wrath was a VERY lazy expansion for the best part.

    Starcraft 2 certainly isnt on my radar when there are so many better RTS games out there

    #11 5 years ago
  12. Gheritt White

    @ 3: Epic LOL.

    #12 5 years ago
  13. Eregol

    At the end of the day Blizzard’s principles haven’t changed since before they released WoW.
    They’ve ALWAYS operated on a ‘done when it’s done’ basis.

    Criticising them for not changing their principles even now when they have WoW out there is a moot argument.

    If they want to make sure all their games are of the highest quality then all the power to them.

    I have quoted this once before and I shall quote it again. Shigeru Miyamoto once said – “A delayed game is eventually good. A bad game is bad forever.”

    #13 5 years ago
  14. endgame

    bioware, valve and id work pretty much the same way if u ask me. have i missed anyone? anyway, i guess we can all agree that this is how ppl should make games. oh and btw, dao took more than 5 years to make (it was ANNOUNCED at e3 2004..), thought it is pretty impressive to say the least. i know i’m enjoying the shit out of it. :D

    #14 5 years ago