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The Best Games Never Published, Part 2: Revisiting Video Gam

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July 20, 2006 3:56:37 PM

It\'s time to go back to development hell to explore the most promising and highly anticipated games that were never published. Whether it\'s a hot MMORPG sequels or a Star Trek title, it seems no game is completely safe from being cancelled or \"indefinitely postponed.\" TwitchGuru explores more of the best games never published.

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July 20, 2006 5:46:20 PM

Cute article. Nice to read just before I take my afternoon nap.........................ZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzZZZZZZzzzzzzzZZZZZZzzzzz
July 20, 2006 5:55:26 PM

I enjoyed Ultima 9 a lot. It had a good story, 3D looked hand-painted. After a patch was make for DirectX and I finally got a good enough card (GeForce2), things ran really smooth.
I don't know why others hated it.
So I was dissapointed, no Ultima X.
Not even UO2. It was a good idea from the begining.
I hated EA. EA had to give Orgin more time, BIG games take time. This is not Hard-Hat-Mac!

At least Elder Scrolls soft of picked up where Ultima left off.
Related resources
July 21, 2006 2:58:44 AM

This article just goes to prove two things...

1. There is no accounting for good taste in games.

2. All gaming companies are ruled by the all mighty dollar, above all else.
July 21, 2006 3:15:52 AM

How about an article on "The Best (older) Games People Still Play"

I still enjoy playing the original MaxPayne, and Return to Castle Wolfenstein. Warcraft 3 is fun so is starcraft. Call of Duty and the original roller coaster tycoon!
July 21, 2006 3:26:04 AM

I would just like to say how refreshing these articles are.
Personally, I think it’s great to read a more technically inclined review (Core 2 Review), then something like this.
Keep up the good work. :D 
July 21, 2006 12:25:36 PM

wow when you dont like people stranger you really dont like em, i missed his/her last lot of posts so i cant comment.

about the article, i too find it a refreshing change to read these articles again there where a few games there i had never heard of, i didnt realise so many games hit the bucket.

edit
spelling mistake
July 21, 2006 1:32:11 PM

That was a good read... :lol: 

I think he should actually go out to the pub now and again and play a few games off pool... he seems a bit frustrated :?
July 21, 2006 2:00:15 PM

Nice article, lol at the Desert Bus, I had heard about this before didn't know it was for real though...

Best oldest game I still play is Subspace, not exists as continuum, completely free massively multiplayer online space shooter. It runs on a P1 if you want to but having a decent gfx card will help you because higher res actually gives you more viewing area. These days subspace has a small online community but the majority of the players who play in SVS league have been around for 10 years (like me.)
July 21, 2006 8:44:07 PM

Have you noticed any similarities between Ultima and Oblivion?
Oblivion = Ultima + much better graphics and sound.
Conceptual, the two games are identical.
Ultima is dead, long live Oblivion.
July 22, 2006 1:49:04 AM

They missed Harpoon 4; it was in development over 6 years and through 3 company buyouts before Ubisoft canned it.

We waited years for that game.... :cry: 
July 31, 2006 1:02:36 PM

What about Full Throttle Hell on Wheels??
They announced on 2002 "Full Throttle: Hell on Wheels" which was going to be the "3D" sequel, eight years after the original release, and out of the blue they announced by a press release on August 7th 2003 that they "didn't want to disappoint the fans" so they were discountinuing the development. They disappointed the fans after all

http://www.lucasarts.com/products/hellonwheels/press.ht...

http://www.lucasarts.com/press/releases/81.html
August 23, 2006 4:39:16 PM

Another title was the "Babylon 5 Space Combat simulator" from Sierra. It made an impressive showing at E3 and then was shelved.
March 15, 2007 4:28:05 PM

I thought this article was about All DX10 titles...., my bad
March 15, 2007 4:59:59 PM

I was happy when blizz announced a new SC game, then I heard it was a shooter, hmm ok, I like shooters, then I saw, console only! BURN GHOST BURN! Now console players feel my pain I unleash on you!

As for the other games mentioned.. don't know what I was doing.. probably still playing SC:BW in a cave..
March 15, 2007 5:16:18 PM

Holy reheat of the leftovers batman!!!

Being put on the home page I thought this was something NEW!

Turns out the article is 8 months old!!!!

C'mon guys!!!! :roll:
March 15, 2007 6:04:16 PM

Yeah, WTF is this article doing on the home page?
March 15, 2007 7:08:25 PM

Heh, I thought it sounded familiar....
March 15, 2007 7:27:10 PM

Sorry, didn't mean to throw leftovers at you guys. I just thought I'd repost it since we're working on a new installment and wanted to get some more feedback and suggestions and also spark some interest in the series for those that hadn't seen the first two.
March 15, 2007 8:18:11 PM

Could have just posted a new thread with links. :p 
March 15, 2007 8:34:05 PM

Wow, it's been a while since I read it, and it still seems pretty fresh.

However, I do have one thing to nit-pick on it, and that's the mentioning of Fallout 3. Technically, the Van Buren project is dead, though Interplay still holds the IP to it.

Worries that Bethesda Game Studios isn't giving much information about the game should be set aside; that is the way Bethesda works. They only ever made ANY mention of the game at all because, as Interplay is a publicly traded company, law required them to mention this to concur with Interplay's own press release on it. Bethesda themselves are privately-owned, meaning that for anything within their own business entirely, they don't like talking.

This was quite demonstrated with The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion; though they started heavy work as soon as The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind shipped in early 2002, it wasn't until late 2004 that they even acknowledged that development on TES IV was taking place. And even then, information was sparse. It wasn't until early 2006, less than two months before the game went gold, that they started putting out screenshots, information, etc. at a rate that most people are used to seeing from big-name developers.

This has been especially disconcerting to the core fanbase for the Fallout series, who were previously used to being close and intimate with Black Isle Studios (the developer of Fallout and Fallout 2) and with the transfer of rights to the game to Bethesda, these fans are now back at square one, with a largely unfamiliar company that operates in a different manner.

So, for accuracy purposes, I would've labeled that part of the article "Fallout 3 (Van Buren project)" to indicate that it's Interplay's original work that will not see the light of day, not FO3 entirely.
Quote:
How about an article on "The Best (older) Games People Still Play"

I still enjoy playing the original MaxPayne, and Return to Castle Wolfenstein. Warcraft 3 is fun so is starcraft. Call of Duty and the original roller coaster tycoon!

"Older?" Older than what? :?

:p 

When I think of a good Tycoon game made by Chris Sawyer, I think of Transport Tycoon (1994) not Roller Coaster Tycoon. I was a bit disappointed that after the runaway success of RCT, He went and completely neglected his original series; TT still remains the most complex and deepest of any capitalist games. Sure, he made a "sequel" many years later, but it wasn't anywhere near as good.

Quote:
Have you noticed any similarities between Ultima and Oblivion?
Oblivion = Ultima + much better graphics and sound.
Conceptual, the two games are identical.
Ultima is dead, long live Oblivion.

Yes, of all of the game series out there, the one that has been the closest to the Ultima series has been The Elder Scrolls, though in most cases, TES IV: Oblivion and even TES III: Morrowind aren't terribly close as TES II: Daggerfall. They fall into the fairly small category I first phrased as "ARPGs" (American Role-Playing Games) as opposed to the JRPG style.

However, of course, don't expect an MMORPG from Bethesda anytime soon. Though there was an interview that supposedly claimed this, the person interviewed himself (Pete Hines, Bethesda's Vice Prez of PR/Marketing) later came into an official discussion on it to state that they had misconstrued what he had said. His actual words were, on the subject, more to the tune of "We've considered it repeatedly, and each time have decided to not make an MMO unless we can find a way to make it unique and good."

In other words, they won't be willing to make another Everquest/Guild Wars/World of Warcraft clone.

Quote:
Sorry, didn't mean to throw leftovers at you guys. I just thought I'd repost it since we're working on a new installment and wanted to get some more feedback and suggestions and also spark some interest in the series for those that hadn't seen the first two.

No real problem; I don't think I spoke much on the previous article.

At any rate, since I'd gathered that the reason for digging it up was precisely what you said, I wonder what new games you're going to mention. Some that I've thought of:[*:911e8ecf99]Stars! Supernova Genesis (Mare Crissium, PC, PS2, Xbox, Game Cube) - Back in 1995, a little outfit released a space-strategy sim called Stars!. Citing a variety of major titles including, most prominently, Master of Orion and Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri, they strived to make an incredibly complete, exhaustive, and intuitive space-strategy game. By the time it came out, entirely turn-based sims were starting to fall out of favor to the growing segment of real-time strategy games such as the WarCraft series, it still had pleasing gameplay, allowing for an all-aspect 4X game that was as surprisingly simple and easy to control as it was flexible game styles it could produce.

Though the game itself didn't sell incredibly well, it did enough to push demand for a more modern sequel, with all the trappings of a modern game: 3D graphics, console ports, scenario scripting, and support for bigger, wider, and more varied games.

However, trouble did come; development managed to slow with decreasing support for any potential publisher; while console support was intended, it was being designed from the ground-up as a PC game, in a world that was focusing more and more on consoles and ignoring the PC. Eventually, development asphyxiated, with no new announcements coming past 2003. By 2005, their own websites expired. Though suggestions of future work have surfaced of a sequel, for virtually all intents and purposes, the project is dead.
[*:911e8ecf99]Descent Freespace 3 (Volition Inc., PC) - In 1998, Volition shook the world with their space-flight-sim game, Descent Freespace: The Great War. While it was hardly a new genre in the face of heavyweights like Wing Commander and X-Wing/TIE Fighter, the unique combination of excellent gameplay, detailed, heavily-scripted missions, a surreal setting, and a gripping single-player campaign and storyline, turned this into an instant hit.

A year later, an upgraded game, Freespace 2, set the fans of the original on fire. By almost all accounts, it was better in every way, and by its supporters, is accounted to be one of the finest games ever produced.

Eventually, when a sequel was announced, again, fans were thrilled. However, the project didn't seem to move terribly far. With little information announced, and not even a cancellation, Volition, who had moved from Interplay to THQ, seemed to have forgotten their original series. Some have suggested that the poor sales of Freespace 2, in spite of its stellar reviews, have signified that the genre was a dead-end, and not worth pursuing.
March 15, 2007 8:39:13 PM

I read somewhere the other day about some sort of Fallout (or Fallout-esque) MMORPG. And while Oblivion is pretty decent and Morrowind wasn't bad, Daggerfall was far better.
March 15, 2007 9:04:53 PM

Quote:
Could have just posted a new thread with links.


Perhaps, VB, but then I might not have gotten one of (not)The King's detailed, essay-length responses.

Point taken about Fallout 3, which is supposed to come out, albeit in an entirely different form, sometime soon.
March 15, 2007 9:35:22 PM

Quote:
I read somewhere the other day about some sort of Fallout (or Fallout-esque) MMORPG. And while Oblivion is pretty decent and Morrowind wasn't bad, Daggerfall was far better.

Well, as the article mentioned, all potential rights for a Fallout MMO are retained by Interplay.

And your comments on Daggerfall are grounds for me to accuse you of stealing my words. :p 
March 15, 2007 10:12:47 PM

Quote:
Could have just posted a new thread with links.


Perhaps, VB, but then I might not have gotten one of (not)The King's detailed, essay-length responses.
True, but neither of us saw that one coming. :wink:

Great post, NTK. I took it as a recommend for Transport Tycoon. [/original RCT fan] :wink:
March 16, 2007 12:03:56 PM

all gay ass nerd games. no wonder they got pulled.
March 16, 2007 3:50:34 PM

It's not that game companies are ruled by the dollar...its that PEOPLE are. I mean, you wouldn't do your job for no compensation right?

Can you imagine the conversation?

MANAGER: Uh, everyone gather round...OK...we just ran out of money, none of you, myself included, will receive a paycheck for any more work we do. That's all, now, back to work.

What are the employees saying?

EMPLOYEE: ________

You fill in the blank and then extrapolate if the widget gets made.
March 19, 2007 12:18:22 PM

Harsh dude.... harsh. Fallout was a good 'un.
-Ace
March 19, 2007 1:33:06 PM

Quote:
all gay ass nerd games. no wonder they got pulled.
Can you vote a guy lower than one? That was kinda uncalled for.
March 19, 2007 8:09:56 PM

Well you can always vote ignore.
That way at least YOU never have to see his inane comments again.
March 19, 2007 8:18:48 PM

True, but it doesn't help anyone else...
March 19, 2007 8:40:20 PM

WHOOPS SORRY MAN. I meant to vote one star for the guy above you, not you. You're comment is five stars. I'm really sorry.

Let me give you money.
-Ace
March 19, 2007 9:18:12 PM

I wish there were stars OR frowns. The scale on the stars is good to best, the last thing I want to do is give an idiot the idea that his post was "good"
March 19, 2007 9:27:22 PM

Well, remember, the "good" thing pretty much means "sucky". Sortov like when journalists use polite words like "implied", "obfuscated", and "sketchy" etc - when all those pretty much just mean "fuhck you".
-cm
March 19, 2007 9:32:37 PM

Quote:
Well, remember, the "good" thing pretty much means "sucky". Sortov like when journalists use polite words like "implied", "obfuscated", and "sketchy" etc - when all those pretty much just mean "fuhck you".
-cm


Isn't that what everything a politician says means??
March 20, 2007 1:20:24 PM

Polititians always tell the truth.
-cm
March 20, 2007 1:29:41 PM

Quote:
Polititians always tell the truth.
-cm
Yes, the truth as it benefits them. Truth is a highly arbitrary concept.
March 20, 2007 2:00:39 PM

You gets a best vote.
-cm
March 20, 2007 2:44:40 PM

Why thank you. So do you...
March 20, 2007 9:03:11 PM

Quote:
Great post, NTK. I took it as a recommend for Transport Tycoon. [/original RCT fan] :wink:

RCT's pretty good, I was just disappointed that Sawyer's programming career completely changed. Just of course, note that TT was made for both DOS and Windows 95, and as I've never touched the Win95 version, I don't know how it'll run on Windows XP. However, of course, you COULD reasonably go the DOSBox route just in case, as the game was made for shockingly low specs: 4MB of RAM and a 25MHz 80386. (16-bit CPU) So just about any Pentium 4, AthlonXP, or later should be able to produce enough power even through DOSBox; this isn't Dark Forces, Daggerfall, or Quake, thankfully.

As for the game itself, I enjoy it quite a lot, (I've put a few hours into it just in the past week) though one major shortcoming: the AI. It's the stupidest I've EVER seen in any game... And mind you, I've played through between 2,000-3,000 games. The second screenshot in this Wikipedia Article gives an example of how they construct. I would point out that such a network is an ANOMALY, as very rarely have I ever seen them succeed in making two rail lines cross each other successfully; in other words, that's how they do on a GOOD day. On the flip side, it's quite possible to interfere with their construction, and have them waste all their money without ever completing a single line... But my recommendation is just to turn off the AI opponents altogether. It's a real shame that multiplayer can only exist through a direct serial connection. (though as I recall, there are some network emulators that would allow you for a 2-player game via LAN)

Quote:
all gay ass nerd games. no wonder they got pulled.

If you post a critique, I would recommend making it more precise than that, perhaps pointing out the fallacies of each and every game, rather than just making a blanket troll.

For instance, might I ask you what's NOT a sort of game that likes taking it in the back door?

Quote:
I wish there were stars OR frowns. The scale on the stars is good to best, the last thing I want to do is give an idiot the idea that his post was "good"
It's things like this which make it why I simply never really vote-rate posts/threads, on any forum. The exceptions I could make are for forums where the voted rating of a whole thread could determine it's fate.

[edit]D'oh, use the right closing tag. :slaps forehead:
May 3, 2007 5:06:28 PM

Ahh article made me soo sad... I went and installed star craft and fallout 2 last night. I loaded them up and went "wtf" my resolution went to hell. But i remember playen them on a 200 Mhz monster =)

I miss the old days, I always waited for Fallout 3 and/or Ghost, just sitting there going i hope they will come out this year, now im sitten here just hoping any decent game comes out, i havnt played anything worthwhile for a long time or anything that i was completely addicted to.

My top three games from the past:
Starcraft
Fallout I & II
Baldurs Gate Series <-- horrible online, but fun as far as i was concerned I really only played single player
!