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SG Choice: Cancelled Games

Following the surprising and long-awaited release of the infamously cancelled SNES game, Star Fox 2, the Source Gaming team reflect on other cancelled games. Want to see which games they’d like to see revived and released in the future? Read on!

The Legend of Zelda: Mystical Seed of Courage
would have been the third Oracle game in the series. Developed by Capcom, legend has it that this game was cancelled after issues came up during debugging. Mainly the team couldn’t figure out how to make all three games link up with each other. Oracle of Ages and Oracle of Seasons were fantastic games, and a third version would have been quite the treat.

To a certain extent, I still pine for
Silent Hills. The prospect of Hideo Kojima and Guillermo del Toro collaborating on a Silent Hill game starring The Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus is a prospect so exciting and marketable it could only take Konami’s implosion to cancel it. Sony is now bankrolling Kojima’s new project Death Stranding (which stars Reedus, del Toro, and Mads Mikkelsen), but I can’t help but feel remiss at what we lost, just looking at their demo P.T. This was a chance to see two incredible artists work on a series that at its best produced one of the greatest works of the medium, and a series that had fallen on hard times. Instead, Kojima was forced out, Konami seems content to burn its bridges, and Silent Hill and, to a lesser extent, Metal Gear Solid simply ended, almost ignominiously.

Between Rare and its co-founder
Tim Stamper, there are multiple builds of a prototype game named Dream for SNES. Through years of development, it was moved over to Nintendo 64 and transformed into what we know today as Banjo-Kazooie. However, Dream originally started out as a much different game on SNES. There have always been some vague details on the net about original plans for the game. Grant Kirkhope generously shared about a dozen tracks written specifically for Dream, and included all the details he could remember. The footage Rare showed off in December of 2015 showcases an incredibly ambitious SNES game, and one I would have absolutely loved to play.

: I was about to write about either the canceled localization of Final Fantasy VI for europe or the famous canceled Kirby GCN. But honestly, as time flew by, we somewhat recieved those games and the outcome isn’t that bad. So instead, I’m rather going to chose a recent canceled game, that really hurts:
Scalebound for Xbox One!

It was Hideki Kamiya’s new baby and PlatinumGames chance to appeal to a bigger western audience. And this big project looked very promising and actually was my only reason to get a Xbox One (And also was one of my reasons to beef up my PC). Sure, it looked rough on some edges, but I still believed in Scalebound. I mean, not only could you ride a dragon, but also fight alongside your trained dragon-friend, how could you cancel this awesome game?! Really unfortunately that Microsoft and PlatinumGames couldn’t find an agreement and literally wasted their resources and money. And there’s no way we will someday see or get this gaming treasure, what a shame…

As a child, I spent much of my non-gaming time consuming books about paranormal phenomena and conspiracy theories. Upon discovering the concept of canceled games, I found that it filled me with that same satisfying sense of mystery and wonder. So while there are many games that I’d squander the potential of a time machine to save, few compare to Glover 2. The original Glover was a deeply flawed platformer with unique physics-based gameplay, centering around protecting a magic ball from harm while using it to solve puzzles. Despite its ambitious nature, it was hamstrung by the same problems as most early 3D titles. It would have been delightful to see the concept honed further, and a sequel in the vein of Banjo Kazooie looked to be just the ticket. Development apparently ceased not due to lack of interest, but because Hasbro bafflingly flooded the market with twice as many copies of Glover as demand warranted. Playable prototypes exist, but they offer merely a tantalizing glimpse of what could have been.

There are an abundance of interesting games throughout history that were cancelled, or remodelled into entirely different games.

I think perhaps none more relevant to my interests as a gamer than Twelve Tales: Conker 64. The game was very far along in development before being remodelled into the incredibly unique and inspiring Conker’s Bad Fur Day. A move Rare made to distinguish Conker from the plethora of similar cutesy platformer games of the late 90s. Still, there’s practically a whole Rare-made 3D Platformer out there that I have not been able to adventure through! Being able to play the original version of the game would be an experience I’d relish, if for no other reason than to play it comparatively with the Conker game we did get.

When a game is cancelled, we have often already seen at least some media related to the project, be it a trailer or a demo or even just magazine scans, that allow us to glean some idea of the direction the project was headed. Unfortunately, this was not the case with Fire Emblem 64.

All we know of this game is that it existed, but that doesn’t stop me from wishing we had at least seen more of it. Since Fire Emblem wasn’t brought over to the west until after Marth and Roy’s Smash Bros. debut in Melee, I very much doubt there would have been a localisation, but I think if any material related to the game does still exist, it would be interesting to see how the series’ foray into 3D graphics would’ve worked out if it had happened almost a decade earlier.

Which previously cancelled game would you like to see revived? Let us know in the comments!

  1. The first game that came to my mind that I’d like to see would be Catroots, for the Nintendo 64.( The Looney Tunes style gameplay looks like it could have been a lot of fun.
    Another interesting option would be Dragon Hopper for the Virtual Boy. From what I’ve seen, that looks like it could have been good, and likely would have been one of the best titles in the Virtual Boy’s lineup.
    Then, of course, there’s Ura Zelda. Ocarina of Time was such a good game that I’d like to see more about how they would have expanded on that.
    And lastly, I’m a little curious to see what Kid Kirby would have ended up being like.

    John on August 14 |
  2. I could’ve chose Kirby GCN or Sonic X-Treme, but as I read everybody’s choices, I’ve realized that something was missing as everybody have already forgotten. This may sound cheating, but since it was a huge thing for me, I would like to bring out three cancelled titles for this case; and all three of them are Mega Man related.

    Mega Man Legends 3…which possibly known to be a biggest project to rescue Mega Man from the moon since his last mission, was a huge deal that many MML fans were waiting for the whole time. The game’s development was doing better as they’ve held heroine contests for the game, even announced the voice actress for the character! There were many concept arts made since then, and it looked like the game was already in a good progression.

    Mega Man Universe…it wasn’t just a continuity of Mega Man Powered Up, which was a remake of Mega Man 2. But it was a Mega Man version of Super Mario Maker, which players had its own freedom to make your own stage and share it with other players online. While characters can be customized too, the game not just only allowed to choose from the Universe version Mega Man, the original Mega Man, and the Bad Box Art Mega Man. The game also contained crossover characters like Ryu and Arthur…even they added Japan’s green dinosaur character Gachapin as a special character too! The game may have planned for DLC if they were planning to add in more special characters, which would’ve been so interesting and better at the same time.

    Mega Man Online…while it only existed in Korea, this was another interesting Mega Man game they ever made for online gaming. It was a Mega Man and Mega Man X crossover, with the original Mega Man characters remade to awesome design close to Hitoshi Ariga’s style. The gameplay was even interesting, and if it had an opportunity to play worldwide, I could’ve played with other players as well!

    But sadly, all three titles were later scrapped after Inafune left Capcom, which their effort of creating the great games turned into a waste. I mean, how could they do such thing?! Mega Man Legends 3 already brought a new heroine and her voice actress. Mega Man Universe brought Japan’s famous mascot to the game. Mega Man Online had a great animation and designs already prepared. They put so much effort on gathering special things to the games, but they simply disposed all of them into the oblivion like nothing ever happened from the start! But you know, I think that was the time when everybody suspected that Capcom have started to mistreat the Blue Bomber so badly, which everybody started to call them “Crapcom” for making so many bad choices. It could’ve been a huge success if they continued the project, even Inafune’s legacy before the whole Mighty No.9 became a worst nightmare.

    Too bad all three titles turned out to become forgotten by everyone, which is sad. But while Mega Man Universe is reimagined later by fans as Mega Man Maker, I do think our poor ol’ Volnutt ain’t gonna come back to Earth as he’ll be living on the moon forever…

    zoniken on August 18 |
  3. Next Level Games’ Super Mario Spikers would have been very interesting to watch. Having read the reason Nintendo turned it down I’m curious to see (among other things) just how “realistic” the violence was compared to other games that has Mario characters fighting.

    Another game that comes to mind is Jazz Jackrabbit 3, big fan of Epic’s great underrated game series (save for the awful GBA game) and the third installment look like it could have been fun. Also, Alexander Brandon’s work is always a pleasure to listen to. 🙂

    GreatMeat on August 18 |