Diablo III beta targets Q3, full game Q4

Blizzard’s long-awaited Diablo III will be heading into its beta testing phase in calendar Q3 2011 (Jul-Sept), it was revealed during Activision Blizzard’s quarterly earnings call yesterday.

“Internal, company-wide testing” began this week, Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime said on the call, “and we are currently targeting a Q3 launch for external beta testing.” That’s not set in stone, though; in a later statement, a Blizzard rep added: “Please keep in mind that it’s our current goal, and of course that can change as development continues.”

As for the finished product, the studio’s aiming for the fourth quarter; “The development team is working hard to try and launch Diablo III this year,” Morhaime continued on the call. “But I want to be clear that we do not have an official release date or window yet. As always, we will not compromise the quality of the game in order to hit a window.”

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