Of course, the month of StarCraft II's release is now the real question. nope Blizzard intends to launch the beta this summer, and expects the testing to last anywhere from four to six months, a tight window that could see the game slipping into 2010.
"If [the beta] starts in August and takes 5-6 months, then launching the game this year is next to impossible," said analyst Jess Lubert of Brean Murray in a MarketWatch report yesterday.
"Nobody (truly nobody) knows how long the StarCraft II beta will take," chimed in Pachter when speaking to Gamasutra today. "It's highly likely that the game is polished, with few or no bugs."
"They did a phenomenal job with the World of Warcraft beta (as I recall, it was around four months), and they will have no issues at all in attracting 30,000 supremely knowledgeable beta testers, so my bias is that the beta will take less time than most expect," he remarked.
But Blizzard being Blizzard, Pachter admits that it all comes down to whether the company is satisfied.
"The Blizzard guys are perfectionists, and if they want to take six months, nobody at Activision is going to challenge them," he said. "So the bottom line is that StarCraft II will launch when Blizzard says so."