Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm '99% done'

Lead designer Dustin Browder says Blizzard now focused on tuning and polish, says Zerg-centered real-time strategy game will be done when it's done.

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Blizzard Entertainment is close to finishing development on the Zerg-focused Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm, lead designer Dustin Browder told Kotaku. Gamers may not want to get too excited too quickly, as the company remains on "Blizzard time," saying the project will be done when it is done.

Heart of the Swarm is nearly finished, says Browder.
Heart of the Swarm is nearly finished, says Browder.

"We are 99 percent done," he said. "But that last 1 percent's a bitch."

According to Browder, the game's missions are fully playable and the units are finalized. Now, he said, the team is working on putting the finishing touches on it.

"There's something in for everything--it's whether we like it or not that's an open question," he said. "It's the tuning and polish that really takes us a long time, and that's where we get into the unknowns."

Browder did not give any indication as to when the game will be released, saying that's entirely dependent on how satisfied Blizzard is with new builds.

"Like we could do a play-through next week that we're like, 'Wow this is really great.' Or we could do a play-through and we still have 250 items we wanna fix," he said. "You know, historically speaking we're doing pretty well. We're getting there. But I don't know for sure yet when we'll be done."

As part of Activision's latest financial call in February, the publisher revealed it was not expecting to ship both Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm and World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria in 2012. Heart of the Swarm is the second installment in the Starcraft II three-part series. It will follow 2010's Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty and precede the final entry, Legacy of the Void.

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