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    A fan asks WTF with the endless “polishing” and Bashiok replies with bad news for anyone still hoping that “early 2012” actually means “early” in the sense that anyone other than Blizzard would use it.

    It’s making sure everything is perfect. We’re not really in a strictly polishing phase yet though, although certainly that’s true for some areas of the game. Still, we’re in the process of working on some rather large game system changes, some of which we’ll be sharing shortly before or with the next beta patch.

    Start your speculation engines. What major game system changes could they be making that we’ll see in a Beta patch? Not Runestones, and probably nothing to do with items, since most of the itemization is taking place on gear found long after the first part of Act One.

    Another remake of the active or passive skills system? An attribute remodel, maybe giving players something to customize upon level ups? Quest system changes? New monster behaviors or classification systems? Or do you not even care, since you’re so disgusted at the perpetual revisions and delays, and you’re coming more and more to believe that “iteration” is just an excuse to never do anything right the first time?

    Update: Bashiok returned with added additional replies in the thread, the last of which confirmed that they are still shooting for a “first quarter 2012” DiabloWikirelease date.

    So this means that once those large game system changes are set, that will be the time when the D3 team goes in the “strictly polishing” phase?
    I wouldn’t get hung up on thinking about it that way. It’s a big game and each individual piece may be at some different level of development.

    So is the rune system set and is currently being implemented entirely?
    Not yet. Once we have an implementation and we’re at least moderately sure it’s going to work out we’ll share all the details.

    Are far are you guys (generally) from being able to ship a game that is polished? In other words is it still an early 2012 planned release? (which quarter is planned would be most appreciated, not month, but quarter). Because the way it sounds, it’s like if there’s still a lot of job left and that can scare a bit the people eh!
    We don’t know. We were shooting for the end of 2011, and now we’re shooting for first quarter 2012. As soon as we’re sure of something (release date or otherwise) we’ll be sure to let you know.

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