Opinion: Torchlight II Won’t Will Be Out In July (Neither It Should)

E3 is over, the guys at Runic are still high with their 5 “Best of E3” nominations, but there very few news about Torchlight II around.

So far, there are a couple of screenshots floating around with completely emtpy action bars (although we know from the previous game that you can bind an attack to your mouse left and right buttons), the announcement of the Berzerker class, which will use hand weapons and use animals as spells (a dragon head to burn enemies, a pack of wolfs) and only video so far was taken with a camera, with not much resolution and a lot of noise.

And in one interview in the last day of E3, Max Schaefer said that they had to redo the whole inventory thing, ‘cause it wasn’t feeling right.

Let me just stop a second here and say how excited I was when the month of July was approaching and that would mean Torchlight II would be around. It may sound weird that I’m making it all in the past, but let me say why I don’t think the July deadline won’t be met:

First, there is very little information floating around about the game. Sure, everyone was excited in E3, but for a game that will be distributed in digital form initially, there is very little information in their website, which should be the main source of information, even for the already confirmed classes, which gives kinda the impression that even those aren’t totally finished.

Second, very little information is being distributed around. You get some flaky screenshots, a bad quality video and… that’s it.

Third, that interview of things being changed recently.

Now, let me stop again to say that Runic is not a bunch of amateurs. Those are the guys behind the two Diablos and they have Torchlight (the first version) under their belt. They know how to finish a product and that “it’s done when it’s done”. But my fears are that, at this point, the game should be going into full Q&A, not having a class still to be defined, skills rearranged and inventories being rebuilt.

Which brings two other thoughts: The first is that the game will be launched in July with some content broken (not intentionally, but known to be buggy) and they hope they could deliver a fix easily since it’s a downloadable content, which is bad in itself ‘cause early people will find those bugs and complain loudly about it. So, the proper answer would be not release in July, but maybe later, with an assured quality.

Second, it’s that the July deadline is actually imposed by investors, which a very tricky situation. In one hand you have your objective of just release when it’s done, in the other hand you have a bunch of guys with lots of money demanding that you should release at that time.

Honestly, this is all guesswork. I don’t work for Runic neither know anyone at Runic. And I really enjoyed the first Torchlight (even if I have only 116 hours played) but the silence from Runic is worrying.