Sometimes things just don’t work out as planned, making the best course of action to call it quits before any further time and/or money goes to waste. It makes perfect sense, but that doesn’t stop anyone lamenting the fact we’ll likely never get to play what looked to be some very promising games.
The Walking Dead's Norman Reedus and a Silent Hills title card awaited those brave enough to finish P.T.
Chris | Fable Legends
Fable Legends was a free-to-play, asymmetrical multiplayer title set many years before the events of the original Fable trilogy. Four players would each pick a hero with which to battle through a level in familiar Fable fashion, whilst a fifth took on the role of the villain, placing deadly traps and giving orders to their chosen AI minions in a way not dissimilar to playing an RTS.
Although many people did get their hands on Legends, it was cancelled shortly before making the transition from closed to open beta, coming to an end at what should have been just the beginning. It was barebones, and not without its issues, but I'd posit that's not surprising for a game at that stage of development.
Legends was even picking up some steam in the final months, what with new playable heroes added, alongside (less excitingly) microtransactions. It strikes me as odd that Microsoft would decide to cancel the game right as it started to recuperate some of the funds that were channelled into it, but the real tragedy was the simultaneous closure of developer Lionhead Studios.
Usually, this'd be my cue to bemoan the drought of Fable 4 announcements we currently find ourselves in the midst of, but with E3 only a month away and rumours swirling, I'm hopeful we’ll see something from the series soon.
R.I.P. Lionhead Studios and Fable Legends.
Liam | Star Wars 1313
I can’t think of too many Star Wars games where you aren’t cast as a Sith, a Jedi, or an Imperial or Rebel pilot, so when I first read about 1313 and its bounty hunter protagonist, I was very much intrigued.
Exploring the Coruscant underworld and the shady characters who dwelt within reminded me of 2002’s Star Wars Bounty Hunter, which starred Jango Fett as he tore his way across the galaxy battling gangsters with an awesome arsenal of weapons.
1313 almost sounded like it could have been a spiritual successor, more so once it was revealed the game’s protagonist was intended to be Jango’s son, Boba Fett. Woefully underused in the original movies, any chance to spend more time with one of the coolest characters in the Star Wars universe would have been great.
Considering Boba had access to the same jetpack/flamethrower/blaster combo - not to mention myriad other gadgets - that was put to great use by his father in Bounty Hunter, 1313 really could have been something special.
I’m still hopeful it’ll be revived at some point in the future, particularly if Respawn’s Jedi: Fallen Order does well. Perhaps then Disney will release there’s still a market for single-player Star Wars games.
With the demise of LucasArts (who happened to be Chris' favourite developer), it's unlikely we'll ever see a Star Wars 1313 revival.
James | Timesplitters 4
Every console generation comes with titles that are killed off before their time, or perhaps get stuck in development hell, though on the flip side there are arguably just as many which should never have seen the light of day...
For me, Timesplitters 4 is probably the most anticipated title we never got to enjoy. The Timesplitters series is the most exciting evolution of the seminal GoldenEye on N64, created by members of the Rare team who (time)split off to form Free Radical Design.
That studio is now defunct, having been shut down in 2014 and its staff moved to Dambuster Studios, who underwhelmingly brought us Homefront: The Revolution. However, the potential in retooling some of the unique gameplay ideas teased in Timesplitters of old for the modern era, with the power of online multiplayer at their disposal, is one which fills my mind with possibilities.
Of course, as a general rule we don't need more first-person shooters, but the promise was once there, and it's hard not to feel we've missed out on something special.
Timesplitters was always a bit of daft fun, which we could use more of to break up all the drab military shooters.
Any particular software casualty keeping you up at night? Tell us all about it in the comments.