A note about the process:
- Finish the game (we're squashing bugs)
- Send to Microsoft for "certification." That means they verify that the game is playable and will not harm their brand/reputation. You all know this as an Undead Labs game, but I think most casual users who just see it on XBLA and decide to try it will think of it as an XBLA game... and blame Microsoft if it's not good enough. This process can take anywhere from one to multiple weeks. The game may be sent back to us for several more rounds of refinement. We simply do not know.
- Choose a final release date. This is not up to us. Because there is no physical copy of the game, we're not enslaved to a shipping schedule, and therefore Microsoft may wish to be strategic about the exact opening day. I don't mean they'll sit on it for a month -- they'd like to start making money, and so would we, this isn't an orphaned puppy asylum we're running out of the goodness of our hearts -- but one week may be better than another.
We are still meeting our own deadlines. But as you see, the only thing we control here is the date we submit the game for certification. I cannot possibly hint at a release date until we know how long certification takes, and frankly, we won't know that until it's over.
So. Takeaway: We haven't slipped, pushed back, or run into trouble. The process is fluid, and getting the game to you in a condition where it is worth your money is a partnership between us and Microsoft. I'm not teasing you or holding anything back from you. When we have a good, solid estimate based on facts and not our hopes and dreams, we will tell you.