Company spokesman Travis Baldree explains that the team “made a good run” at the 2011 deadline, but:
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.
Baldree goes on to explain that the team learned its lesson from the first Torchlight, which was released “in record time”. Apparently the shortened development time lead to “plenty of issues” in the finished product, but Runic simply didn’t have the resources to resolve them pre-release.
Right now though, the sequel is in line to receive the lavish attention denied the original, with Runic hard at work to make this “the best game we can make”.
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.
There is also another reason for the delay, which Runic aren’t backward in being forward about: It’s an awfully crowded gaming landscape right now, and Torchlight II deserves a little more attention than it’s bound to receive if it was on shelves among all the other “Holiday 2011” titles.
…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?