Blizzard's Rob Pardo has revealed that StarCraft II's development was held up because a "fair amount of the design team" were conscripted to 'finish off' WoW.
StarCraft II lead producer Chris Sigaty concurs their team "got sucked" into World of Warcraft, saying he too "was called off". Late '05 or early '06 StarCraft II was "legitimately playable."
"One of the reasons that StarCraft II had some delays very early on in development is because a fair amount of the design team went onto World of Warcraft for a year to really help finish that game off," Blizz game design VP Pardo told .
"They had a lot of really great experience to bring, with their knowledge of how they approached the map editor problems, how they dealt with balancing - which we could then leverage into class balancing." So blame you're lovable online world for the delay...
"...during the time that we were working on World of Warcraft, our team got sucked into that to some extent. A lot of our artists went over and worked on WOW - I was called off, too," added Sigaty. Once World of Warcraft was out the door, the devs flocked backed and got to working on StarCraft II. "We build the multiplayer side first," said Pardo.
"It was a brand new engine and brand new technology, so it did take us a couple of years before we had something that was reasonably playable. I would say late 2005 or early 2006 is when we had something that was probably legitimately playable."
"This may be the first game in our recent few games that we haven't done that major reboot with," he continued, referring to their tendency to chuck everything out the window.
"It's been a long project for sure, but if you look at say World of Warcraft, or Warcraft III - or even the original StarCraft - there was a halfway point where we took a dramatic left turn and took a different direction. We haven't done that with StarCraft II. That said, it's certainly taken a long time to get to where it's at, for a variety of reasons."
It's been a long time coming but StarCraft II is almost ready, at least for the first chapter anyway.