Blizzard VP, Rob Pardo, Talks Starcraft 2
As Pardo explains, the reason for the nine-year gap between the first Starcraft’s release and the new one’s announcement was that the development team decided to revisit the Warcraft universe first. That project of course became Warcraft III. The team began work on the Starcraft sequel in 2003, but really didn’t start into full production until a year later. He admits his own surprise at being able to keep the project a secret for so long. They simply used code names for the project and generally kept outsiders away (although Penny Arcade has their own theories). The reason the game is taking so long is because the development team is relatively small, with only 40 people working on it. Also, Blizzard’s strategy tends to focus more on getting out a quality product than hitting a deadline.
That’s probably why Pardo couldn’t give even a ballpark estimate of when the game will be ready to launch. There was one unfortunate thing he made clear though:
“The only thing I can give you [that's] concrete is it’s not going to be this year. Some people were hoping, because of how advanced the game looks, that we’d have it out by Christmas, but that’s definitely not happening.”
Yep, unfortunately, it’s going to be awhile before we get a chance to play this highly anticipated sequel. He also made it very clear that, despite rumors floating around the net, there will definitely be no fourth race; just Zerg, Protoss, and Terran as before.