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8-29-2007 @ 8:43PM
Actual release dates are a bad idea unless you're moderately confident you're going to meet them. (For example, setting an official release date for TBC when the expansion went gold.) Even a ballpark estimate will be quoted and commented upon if you miss it.I think there is some sense in giving approximate dates for things. For example, people might be assuaged about the lack of actual game content in the 2.2 "content patch" if Blizzard was willing to commit to having 2.3 up on the PTR's within a week or two of 2.2 finally launching, if it ever does. Another good example is all this talk of helping the 40-55 leveling curve, which is all well and good except for the crucial question of WHEN. "Before the expansion" could mean next month or could be a year from now, and that's a lot of ambiguity to tack onto something that could be a selling point to retaining bored customers and/or attracting ones who've left back. Then again, there's something infuriating about knowing that the dev acknowledge your problem, aren't going to have a fix ready for months, but are still charging you a monthly fee in the mean time. Not sure if it's better or worse than the devs refusing to even comment that they know your problem is there, but I guess it's another pro/con to consider.Also, the PR dept loves to horde even the smallest tidbits of info so they can trade them for free publicity from places like IGN in the form of articles containing "exclusive info" that could basically have been posted on Blizzard's forums verbatim for all the journalistic input the publishers exert on them.
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