It’s seems about five years early to make that assertion, but a new article on Kotaku includes Diablo 3 in the list of potential vaporware vying for the title of the next Duke Nukem Forever. Other nominees include Black Mesa, Cave Story WiiWare, Final Vantasy vs. 13, Gran Turismo 5, Half Life: Episode 3, Jerry Bruckheimer’s Games, L.A. Noire, PIkmin 3, and StarCraft 2.
First Inkling: Blizzard announced the game with a dramatic bit of web-work in 2008. This game was playable last August, but…
Last Sighting: Late last year, an Activision Blizzard exec put Diablo III in his slideshow of upcoming games. It didn’t go in the 2010 column. It went in the “next few years” column.
Before anyone reads too much into this, refresh your memory of the tortured odyssey that was Duke Nukem Forever. It was planned for a 1997 release, and after about 10 starts and restarts, was (apparently) finally canceled last year. That’s 12 years! Diablo 3 has only officially existed since mid-2008, and hasn’t even been officially delayed yet! Even if Blizzard had announced Diablo 3 back in 2002, when the Bliz North guys were first working on the title, we’d still be years from approaching Duke Nukem Forever’s tragic legacy.
None of that’s to say our game couldn’t earn its spot on this list yet. When it comes to delaying release dates in order to put in more work on a game, never underestimate Blizzard. But let’s not get crazy about delays that haven’t even happened yet!
Update: From the comments. Thanks to Geshi.
Announced Spring 1996, released April 1998
Released 2 years after announcement
Announced September 1997, released June 2000
Released 2 years, 9 months after announcement
Warcraft 3 (ROC):
Announced September 1999, released July 2002
Released 2 years, 10 months after announcement
World of Warcraft (Vanilla):
Announced August 2001, released November 2004
Released 3 years, 3 months after announcement
Announced June 2008. Released … ? 3 years would = June 2011.