There's still no confirmed release date for StarCraft II (we now know it'll be out in the first half of 2010), but the long-awaited sequel is already casting a large shadow. While EA Los Angeles is hard at work on rival RTS Command & Conquer 4, producer Jim Vessella is well aware of the competition from Blizzard.

"Sure it's intimidating," said Vessella, speaking to at a C&C 4 press event last week. "It's one of the most powerful franchises in gaming and it's going to take the market by storm."

"StarCraft II is going to be great. I mean, it's going to be awesome. All of us on team are super excited to play StarCraft II. Our former lead designer from the Battle For Middle Earth series, Dustin Browder, is leading up that team. He's a great, legendary designer and an awesome guy."

But Vessella added that there's room for both titles on the market.

"What I hope is that gamers will try both. I hope that an RTS player will try StarCraft II for that classic RTS formula - base-on-base, the epitome of RTS PvP gameplay. And then maybe after they get Zerg-rushed a few times they come and try C&C 4 and get more of a casual, accessible experience."

Command & Conquer 4 will be the last game in the long-running Tiberium Wars series. It'll be out on PC at some point next year, but EA are currently keeping quiet about the possibility of a console release.