Microsoft has confirmed that the highly anticipated action RPG, Scalebound has officially been cancelled. Announced at E3 2014, the game was being developed by Platinum Games. It was said to be the biggest game the studio had ever worked on and even included four player co-op.
In an official statement, Microsoft said, “After careful deliberation, Microsoft Studios has come to the decision to end production for Scalebound. We’re working hard to deliver an amazing line-up of games to our fans this year, including Halo Wars 2, Crackdown 3, State of Decay 2, Sea of Thieves and other great experiences.”
This news, when coupled with the cancellation of Fable Legends and shut down of Lionhead, in addition to the cancellation of the Phantom Dust reboot does make a case for the people who feel games are being shown too early in their development cycles. Their current line-up of games should please plenty of Xbox fans but nothing comes across as a massive hit or an exciting new idea. Those that were hoping Scalebound would be a featured game for Project Scorpio, an upgraded Xbox One that is built for native 4K gaming, will definitely be disappointed; hopefully a new Halo will take the spotlight now.
But Microsoft isn’t the only one facing difficulties in managing their portfolio. Almost all third party developers are releasing fewer games and taking fewer risks. Their biggest competitor, Sony is notorious for announcing games far too early and just last week they shut down Guerrilla Cambridge, the studio behind Killzone: Mercenary for PS Vita and RIGS for PSVR. This is the second first party studio they have closed in less than a year. All of us also remember the heart-breaking cancellation of Silent Hills due to differences between Hideo Kojima and Konami, as well as the action-adventure game Star Wars 1313, which looked extremely promising from the very first trailer.
Game cancellations happen all the time but Scalebound was much further along than most other projects. While it does leave a hole in Microsoft’s line-up, we only have to wait until E3 in June to see what brand new games they will be bringing to Xbox One....