Has it been 9 years? If so lets check this out... 52 weeks a year, I'll take out 2 weeks for mandatory vacation time (Christmass vacation, etc) that's 50 x 5 = 250 work days per year. 250 x 8 = 2000 work hours x 9 = 18,000 hours in development total, which is 750 straight days worth of time the game should have, roughly speaking, been worked on. That's the equivelant of a *team* of people working on a game for 2 years of their lives straight with no sleep or breaks. What the hell takes that long to make?!??
Look at J.C. he looks ahead where he thinks technology should be at by the time he's finished and shoots for that and gets the game done. I don't know what this team is trying for but it's just sad to think anything could take this long to reach a publishable state.
Everyone can probably predict that what they've done is constantly revised or replaced existing content for their game (unless this game takes like 900 hours to complete), but all of that can be done by sticking to their existing content, releasing then move onto an expansion or sequal. So what's the problem? Is it some need to not be one-up'ed by anyone elses technology? 'We can't release now because X game looks / sounds / plays better then ours?' That's just sad. Swallow your pride and have faith in your fan base (though it's pretty much too late for that).