Diablo® III

Has D3 dev time eclipsed WoW dev time?



How long did it take to get vanilla WoW completed, from start to ship date?

And where are we at in the timeline so far as D3 is concerned?


It seems like World of Warcraft took less time to get out of the door than D3 is taking, and WoW seemed like a much more complicated and bigger game, even back in 2004 with just Kalimdor, the Eastern Kingdoms and the instances available at the time.


Did they just have more people working on WoW? Is an MMORPG easier to make than a OARPG?

The WoW devs are doing stuff like overhauling skill and talent systems, terraforming Azeroth itself via Cataclysm, creating new instances, another new expansion zone, etc...

All the while, Diablo 3 has been in development and still hasn't gotten out the door yet?

Just seems very odd that it's taking so long to ship this game when WoW, which looks much bigger and is constantly expanding, is not only out the door but has it's 4th expansion well under way and most likely coming out in 2012 also.

What is the deal with Diablo 3? It doesn't seem like a huge, technical wonder. It doesn't seem very complicated.

Why are the developers having such a struggle with it?
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We don't have really solid information about when Blizzard started development on WoW. It was announced in September 2001, but it is believed Blizzard had already been working on WoW for at least a year prior to that.

So just going off the amount of time between announcement and release, D3 is taking slightly longer than WoW.

That said, you cannot really compare the development of D3 to WoW. They are two completely different game styles, with unique development challenges.
Edited by Arixan on 1/17/2012 6:45 AM PST
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The Diablo series has a reputation, and with all the sweeping changes made I'm sure they've got their hands full producing a game that will meet/exceed diehard Diablo fans' expectations. I'm upset it's taking so long, but a small part of me understands.
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85 Blood Elf Paladin
8315
The reason it's taking so long is because about 10 years ago Blizzard North started production on diablo 3. From what I have read is that the d3 project has been sc**@!d and restarted twice. That is why blizzard north isn't around anymore. They didn't make the game too Blizzard's standards. They have an interview out there from one of the guys working on d3 when blizzard north was doing it. Regardless blizzard always takes a very long time to make there games. They are always great when they come out. Look at Call of duty the games get pumped out every year and they slowly just get worse.
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As I understand it, Warcraft 3 and WoW were being developed simultaneously from the get go and though Blizzard hasn't released WoW's development timeline, they have released information regarding W3's development timeline. This puts the start of development around the beginning of 1998, which means World of Warcraft was in development for nearly 7 years prior to launching.

Diablo 3 (as we know it, not the Blizzard North game!) has been in development for at least 3.5 years and potentially as long as 6.5 years. When D3 development began is not clearly defined. Though, we do know Blizzard North was shut down in August of 2005. Blizzard began developing D3 somewhere between the shuttering of Blizzard North and the announcement at Blizzcon 2008.

As such, I don't believe WoW's development time has been eclipsed yet.
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01/17/2012 07:06 AMPosted by Daywâster
Look at Call of duty the games get pumped out every year and they slowly just get worse.


I wouldn't even say so much that they get worse. They stay pretty much the same, because that is the only way a developer can push out new games that fast. You get maybe one or two new features, otherwise it's essentially a mod pack or an expansion.

Our expectations, however, do go up. Perhaps unreasonably so. Which is why they appear worse, even though we were perfectly happy with what was essentially the same game only a year before.

When it comes to game development (or any type of project really) it pretty much works like this:
Fast
Inexpensive
High Quality

Pick Two.
Edited by Arixan on 1/17/2012 7:27 AM PST
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