I feel sorry for Jaeho Lee sometimes. The man heads up the English-speaking conference call for Korean-based NCSoft. Last time NCSoft at the conference call spoke substantively about Guild Wars 2’s possible release date it caused enough commotion that the ArenaNet’s brass had to respond. Of course it can’t be helped, Guild Wars 1 was a success in what was considered a DOA-business model. More people than rabid fans like me want to know about the sequel to ArenaNet’s first game.
So, of course Mr. Lee was asked at the most recent conference call about NCSoft’s upcoming offerings: Guild Wars 2 and Blade & Soul. You could hear his neurons click. Anybody that’s read Dark Tower should immediately think of Blaine’s thought processes in regards to the asinine riddles the heroes asked the AI. The answer was “I believe there will be certain public events in the year 2010… at least a closed beta test for those titles. Commercialisation will be expected, at this point, probably some time in the year 2011.” He later confirmed that both games were “on schedule.”
I did not post it here, at the time, because it was not really blogworthy in my view. He had to give investors an answer knowing full well that ArenaNet (a company that likes to control its own information) and rabid fans were intently listening after the past conference call debacle. Since NCSoft is riding on Aion’s success in terms of the bottom line, might as well give a conservative estimate to the invenstors, right? It’s not like they have to rush to serve up another MMO coming off some mediocre launch.
Anyway, I am still betting on a 2010 release until I hear from ArenaNet (who has been morbidly silent on Mr. Lee’s answer). I think we will have a much better guesstimate next year when they start releasing information on mechanics and gameplay. In the meantime, we have this bit of information. The fans at Guild Wars 2 Guru never cease to amaze me with their constant crusade for information. Shew, and others, have been scouring ArenaNet artist websites, and Fan Yang’s resume was recently updated with the line “Guild Wars 2 (expected 2010).” Can’t beat inside information.
and code wants to be wrong