In the world of video games, there are a ton of things that happen behind the scenes that the public never really hear about. Countless meetings discussing projects, deadlines, budgets, and much more. We never get to hear the pitches publishers get from young and hungry teams of developers. The following article is going to be talking about two things in game development on opposite sides of the spectrum. We'll be taking a look at 15 games that were canceled. This means that there will be some games that were ended in the early stages as well as some that were pretty close to completion and subsequent release. Some of them for the right reasons, and others for reasons still unknown. To make sure we also bring some optimism and hope to the table we'll also talk about 15 game franchises that need or deserve a reboot. There are so many communities out there that just want to see their favorite series come back. When you're gone for a long time it's always better to start from the beginning again. Publishers want to meet lifelong fan demands while at the same time appealing to a brand new audience of players. The best way to do this is with a solid reboot of a beloved series. Fans would ultimately want a continuation of the story rather than a reboot, but sadly a reboot is the only way many of these dormant franchises have a chance of ever seeing the light of day again (outside of a remaster). Let's now take a look at 15 games that were canceled as well as 15 video game franchises that need a reboot as soon as possible.
30 Canceled: Scalebound
When Microsoft announced that Platinum Games was developing a console exclusive that looked like Final Fantasy 15 meets dragons meets Xenoblade, fans everywhere lost their minds. Having a new Japanese developed Xbox exclusive was the stuff of dreams.
Players hadn't seen that partnership since the days of Blue Dragon and Jade Empire.
After a few years of delays and little evident progress in terms of moving towards a release, the game was canceled. Though nothing is confirmed rumors suggest Platinum Games wasn't meeting deadlines and Microsoft felt the Scalebound project was doomed.
29 Reboot: Legacy Of Kain
The Legacy of Kain franchise is a beloved action-adventure series that has long been dormant outside of a failed multiplayer beta experiment in 2015. The last substantial title in the series was Legacy of Kain: Defiance released in 2003. Amy Henning, known for being a lead writer on the Uncharted series, got her first big breakout with Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver in 1999. The world and lore of the Legacy of Kain have a lot of interesting elements and ideas that could be brilliantly explored in a modern day reboot of the series. Give us what we want, Square Enix!
28 Canceled: Heavenly Sword 2
Heavenly Sword was a surprise hit developed by Ninja Theory on the PlayStation 3 that sold over 1 million copies in its first year. Because of its success, Sony immediately greenlit development on a sequel from a different studio. In 2013 the studio working on Heavenly Sword 2 was folded into Guerilla Games and Sony canceled the project. With Microsoft's recent acquisition of Ninja Theory, there's a possibility we might one day see this sequel come to fruition. It's unclear who owns the rights to Heavenly Sword, but Ninja Theory could have potentially retained them this entire time.
27 Reboot: Tomba!
This is going to be the one entry that many people are going to scratch their head at. Tomba! and Tomba! 2 were platforming games developed by Whoopee Games on the PlayStation 1. It featured many interesting characters and a zany story. Seeing how this world and characters could be brought into the modern gaming age would be a tremendous accomplishment. Having a titular character like Tomba who has a Tarzan-like personality and some neon pink hair could really play well to a younger audience. It's never too late to see the return of Tomba!.
26 Canceled: Streets Of Rage
Many people have forgotten about Ruffian Games' (Crackdown 2) attempt at bringing Streets of Rage into the modern age. They uploaded a video of a prototype they made in just 8 weeks showcasing how they turned the classic 16-bit brawler into a 3D modern-day adaptation. Tons of hype was generated about what could possibly be a new generation of Streets of Rage games, but sadly this seed bared no fruit. Sega turned away from Streets of Rage in order to focus on the likes of Sonic the Hedgehog and Football Manager. Streets of Rage deserved better than that, Sega.
25 Reboot: Twisted Metal
Where has Twisted Metal been? Vehicular combat seems like a genre that really doesn't have a place in today's gaming landscape. The Twisted Metal we once knew and loved probably wouldn't fare well in terms of sales.
With the recent evolution of the God of War series could we see the same thing happen with Twisted Metal?
A unique idea suggested by fans revolves around turning it into an open-world game with a focus on vehicles akin to Avalanche's Mad Max titles from a few years ago. A Twisted Metal reboot will probably make you rethink everything you thought a Twisted Metal game needed to be.
24 Canceled: LMNO
Do you remember when Steven Spielberg and Electronic Arts partnered together to make a video game in 2004? Well, you probably wouldn't, considering that game in question is LMNO and never saw the light of day. The game centered around the player's relationship with an alien named Eve. The game was touted as being a watershed moment for the industry. LMNO slowly morphed into a less-inspired more marketable product called The Escape Artist. Though it drastically changed from its origin this iteration was ultimately canceled in 2009.
23 Reboot: Army Of Two
Army of Two is a series that features sub-par games in terms of story, but the co-op mechanic is something players today clamor for more than ever. Rebooting a 2-player co-op shooter were teamwork is most important could really perform well in today's market. Josef Fares of Hazelight Studios seems like the type of person perfectly suited to reboot this franchise. His first two games were both critical successes and focused on the teamwork of controlling two characters. His relationship with EA via A Way Out makes this a lot more likely than you would initially think.
22 Canceled: Starcraft: Ghost
Starcraft: Ghost was set to be the first Starcraft game centered at capturing the attention of the console market. The game shifted hands through multiple studios and it seems that Blizzard had a hard time finding someone who would meet their lofty standards for a game with their name attached. The game starred a woman named Nova who was a Starcraft unit known as a ghost. It was set to be a stealth/action game that pulled players into the close-up brutality of the Starcraft universe. It was removed from Blizzard's schedule in 2006 but officially canceled in 2014.
21 Reboot: Dark Cloud
Dark Cloud is an action role-playing series that somehow had it's only two games come out to phenomenal critical reception and yet it never received another game. Many believe the series is responsible for thrusting Level-5 into the limelight.
As recent as August 2017 Level-5 has expressed interest in making a Dark Cloud 3 or a Dark Cloud reboot of sorts.
They've stated their own interest but have stated the IP is co-owned by Sony Interactive Entertainment. This means that it's up to Sony to make this dream come true. Here's hoping for another year of dreams at E3 2019.
20 Canceled: Gotham By Gaslight
The Arkham games by Rocksteady and WB Montreal set a new standard for what a superhero video game should be. That series alone vaulted Rocksteady into the upper echelon of developers. What would you say if I told you a Batman game based on the Gotham By Gaslight series was planned and canceled, but not by Rocksteady? Day 1 Studios, the developer behind the F.E.A.R. series, developed a prototype of a game based on this iconic Batman story. Unfortunately, the game couldn't find a publisher and the project was scrapped. Luckily fans received an animated movie version of Gotham By Gaslight to feed their desires.
19 Reboot: Onimusha
With the recent reveal of Suckerpunch's Ghost of Tsushima, fans were waiting on baited breath for the reveal of an Onimusha reboot. Along with Ghost of Tsushima, there was also the announcement of Sekiro from FromSoftware which means that samurai themes are making a strong resurgence. This should get fans of Onimusha hopeful and the possibility of a reboot is becoming ever more likely. Capcom has been on a tear recently with Monster Hunter: World, Resident Evil 7 and 2 Remake, as well as Mega Man 11. Maybe they'll bring back this fan favorite as well?
18 Canceled: Agent
Do you remember when Sony announced a PlayStation exclusive game from non-other than Rockstar Games? Many people tend to forget that this ever happened considering how successful Rockstar has been with their own properties the last decade.
In 2010 Rockstar announced Agent was still in development despite fears it had been canceled.
In 2011 Sony's then CEO Jack Tretton wasn't even sure the game was still an exclusive for PlayStation. The game's never been officially canceled but with Red Dead Redemption 2 and GTA VI on the horizon, it's safe to say this bird's baked.
17 Reboot: Spyro & Crash
Now, I grouped both of these classic PlayStation characters together considering they both have received the remake treatment for their original trilogies. Many people feel that this is simply Activision cashing in on nostalgia and delivering something fans have wanted for years, a way to play their favorite childhood games on the current generation of hardware. Others believe that this was a cost-effective way for Activision to gauge interested in them to see if a reboot of both Spyro the Dragon & Crash Bandicoot would be a worthy return on investment.
16 Canceled: Tom Clancy's Rainbow 6: Patriots
Rainbow 6: Patriots was simply a victim of next-generation consoles providing more power and tools to developers. Much of the team believed the destructible environment capabilities that were shaping up for them as they started to explore next-gen opportunities made them question R6: Patriots' reason for existing. They ultimately decided to scrap the game and hit restart despite being deep in development. They shifted towards a game focused on what their community wanted and Rainbow Six: Siege was born. The game's been a tremendous success and it seems like it was the right decision in the end.
15 Reboot: Jade Empire
Now, this one particular case is weird. It seems like an odd move on the surface to reboot a franchise with just a single entry. Though Jade Empire is a game loved by millions of gamers who owned the original Xbox, it doesn't hold the same resonance as other Japanese role-playing series such as Persona, Chrono, or Final Fantasy. A reboot makes the most sense considering a favorable amount of Xbox One owners probably weren't aware of its existence in the first place. Jade Empire deserved a sequel, and an exclusives dry platform like the Xbox One could use an awesome JRPG.
14 Canceled: Star Fox 2
Star Fox 2 is probably the most interesting cancellation on this list considering it's currently playable by millions of people. In a shocking reveal, Nintendo announced that Star Fox 2 would be included in the Super Nintendo Entertainment System Classic.
It was the follow-up to their successful NES Classic launch from the year prior.
Star Fox 2 was infamously canceled near completion and fans wanted to see the game for decades. After playing it, it seems that Nintendo had every right to cancel such a sub-par and disappointing game.
13 Reboot: Tenchu
Fans of the Tenchu series recently had their hearts broken when Shadows Die Twice was revealed to be a new IP titled Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice and not the Tenchu reboot everyone had been predicting since the short teaser unveiling at the 2017 Game Awards. Earlier we discussed how samurai and ninja settings are coming back into the mainstream. This mixed with the fact that quality stealth games are few and far between that means that it may be the perfect time for a Tenchu reboot to strike. In true ninja fashion, though, we probably won't see it coming.
12 Canceled: Fable Legends
Fable Legends wasn't only the sad realization that a Fable game was getting canceled, it was also lumped into the heartbreaking news that Lionhead Studios was getting shut down. The Fable series has always offered unique British humor and a fantastical world full of possibilities and choice. With the cancellation of Fable Legends and the closing of Lionhead, fans thought the series was dead. Recent rumors suggest that Playground Games, the developers of the highly-acclaimed Forza Horizon series, are working on a new entry in the series.
11 Reboot: Skate
Everyone was expecting to see a new installment in this skateboarding franchise from Electronic Arts. Some even went as far as to believe that they might team-up with Tony Hawk, himself.
Outside of the Kickstarter game Session, there wasn't a skateboard in sight.
Skate is in an interesting place because it seems that skateboarding games aren't really commercially viable these days. Would Electronic Arts make another goodwill move in the same way they did with Mirror's Edge and make a new entry for the hardcore fans? What if a reboot of the series is titled Tony Hawk's Skate?
The optics aren't great for Amazon