Amazon has sent an email to its customers, including myself and Eldorian, to inform the delivery date for World of Warcraft: Cataclysm Collector’s Edition has been changed to an Estimated arrival date in January 2011.

    We now have delivery date(s) for the order you placed on August 20 2010:

    “World of Warcraft: Cataclysm Collector’s Edition”
    Estimated arrival date: January 06 2011 – January 10 2011

Amazon updated just a few days ago a similar email placing Cataclysm at November 23. There has been rumors these past days from certain websites the date would be December. And now Amazon says January. Some of these websites even say the Cataclysm expansion has been [delayed].

The fact is Blizzard Entertainment has never issued an official release date for World of Warcraft: Cataclysm. These sale companies are pulling dates out of their imagination possibly as a marketing strategy to stimulate pre-orders; or simply to do what normal fellow forum posters do when they want something to be reminded … they bump. In this case, Amazon is certainly getting a lot of attention from gaming sites — including Gamespot. It’s normal for gaming sites to believe these dates, but the truth is Blizzard Entertainment hasn’t issued any release date.

Blizzard will release the Cataclysm expansion when it is ready. They can’t place a date when they can’t foresee possible bugs and issues arising after a build. The expansion is currently in beta testing, and none of the 25-man dungeons are available for testing. Many bugs are still found throughout the current build. A lot of content is still NYI (Not Yet Implemented). There’s no way for Blizzard to determine a release date at this point without even hearing beta tester feedback about the 25-man dungeons. The token system conversion hasn’t been implemented.

We can triangulate a “possible month of release (not a date)” by reading the Arena Season 8 ends in October 13th. Arena Season 9 will start a week after Cataclysm ships. That might hint Blizzard has an internal release date goal, but not a final one. Nothing is certain or written in stone at this point. If you hear rumors, and magical proof of a release date — sorry to burst your bubble — but it’s not fact until Blizzard Entertainment makes an official announcement via a press release.

Just ignore it along with those “the end of the world draws near” rumors.