Torchlight II Delayed – But You Have Other Stuff to Play Anyway, Right?

I haven’t mentioned anything about Torchlight II for ages… not since like August of last year when it totally looked like Runic Games was going to beat Diablo III to market.  I still have this picture even.

Torchlight II - Spring 2011?

Alas, things do not always go as planned, and today there was an update from Travis Bickle Baldree.

“So… where is Torchlight 2? Didn’t you guys say that you were planning to try to release this year?”

Well, yeah. We did – and we made a good run at that. We’ve come to the realization, however, that getting a game of this scope up to the quality and polish level we want to achieve is going to take a little longer; especially since we want to run a small beta before release to ensure that our launch is smooth.

The first Torchlight was released in record time, but it had plenty of issues that a little more development could have resolved. We didn’t have the resources at the time to give Torchlight that treatment. Right at this moment though, we do have those resources for the sequel, and we feel strongly that we should apply them to make this the best game we can make and hopefully one that you’ll enjoy and continue to want to play in the future. We’ve probably had 18 months of full development time on it so far – not excessively long yet, as far as that goes. The amount of time we need to take it the rest of the way is relatively small.

We feel pretty safe in saying that if you enjoyed Torchlight at all, this sequel is superior in every respect. Right now our job is to ensure that the quality level is consistent all the way to the end.

Besides, you’re all playing Skyrim right now anyway, aren’t you? Or Battlefield 3? Or Uncharted 3? Or Saints Row 3? Or Arkham City? Or Skyward Sword? Or Minecraft? Or Modern Warfare 3? Or Dark Souls? Or Assassin’s Creed Revelations?

Those are awesome games. When Torchlight 2 goes live, we want it to be awesome too – all the way through.

My first thought was that it is probably better to get it later and have it be awesome, so long as Runic’s financial situation can support the extended development time.  The general response from those who follow Runic on Twitter seemed to be of the same tone.

The delay is a bit disappointing.  After all, *I* am not playing any of those games. (Not that I lack games.)  But they had a hit on their hands with the original Torchlight.  It would be great for them to come back with a new game that stepped things up a notch on all fronts.

I did promise I wouldn’t over-use that “Spring 2011” picture… too much.

Anyway, another game pushed off to 2012.

7 thoughts on “Torchlight II Delayed – But You Have Other Stuff to Play Anyway, Right?

  1. Aufero

    He’s also got a good point about this being a bad release time for another RPG. The original Torchlight was released at a bit of a dry time for the genre, and Torchlight II might sink like a stone (or at least lose some potential early sales) with all the competition it would get in the next couple of months. I suspect with a bit of extra polish and a release in say, March, it will be a star rather than an also-ran.

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  2. Wilhelm Arcturus Post author

    I agree that timing is often very important to the success of a lesser known game. Rift parked itself in a sweet spot. Vanguard, launching next to Burning Crusade, was probably hurt by that.

    But the question is, what competes with which game? All those EVE players are playing Skyrim. Does Skyrim compete with EVE? I do not think so. Would Skyrim, a single player RPG, complete with Torchlight II, a co-op enabled RPG? Maybe.

    Pushing out to 2012 does potentially put the game in conflict with Diablo III, which is a game I am pretty sure will compete directly with Torchlight II. And we don’t know when D3 is going to land, and I sure couldn’t tell you where TLII would be best launched relative to it.

    Should it go out before D3 to steal a march, or would it be better coming out a quarter or so after D3, once the hype around it dies down… if it dies down that soon? I remember Diablo and Diablo II still moving very well for many months after launch.

    So I couldn’t tell you if this is the right decision, only that it is probably more complicated that I imagine… which is the case for most things in life. The most “right” I can probably get is agreeing that they should wait until the game is totally solid and ready to go so that it will compare well to whatever it has to compete with.

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  3. Ahtchu

    Good things are worth waiting for. And in this case, supporting an indie isn’t synonymous with accepting less polish. Good on them for having earned and gotten to the position where polish is an option, and even better that they choose to use that position.
    I also wouldn’t discredit the waves the first game made. These are, after all, the guys who made the action-RPG genre. The people working on DIII are just their imitators. It will stand on its own merits, I feel.

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  4. Random Poster

    I won’t have Skyrim till Christmas..that’s so not fair. I will however be consoling myself with Dark Souls..it is soooooo much fun in the “kick you in your teeth while you are down and trying to get back to your previous corpse” kind of way >.<

    I do think Skyrim would have eaten in to T2, but D3 def will so they have a bit of a tightrope to walk.

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  5. bhagpuss

    I was staggered to find out yesterday that even someone I work with is going to play Skyrim. I didn’t realize anyone i worked with would ever even have heard of it but apparently she clocked up 300+ hours on Oblivion and the only reason she isn’t already playing Skyrim is that she’s got a novel to finish and can’t risk losing the time.

    I have to admit I have now been worn down to the point where I probably will buy the damn thing. Not before there’s a UI mod that loses the fixed cursor, and not with any real expectation that I’ll enjoy it much. This is exactly what happened with Morrowind. I finally cracked and bought that and I found it very poor entertainment indeed.

    Still, can’t really know until you try and I have to have something to tell people when they ask what I want for Christmas, and it sure as heck isn’t going to be SW:toR.

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