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Failed Games That Damaged Or Killed Their Companies

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the cause-or-symptom dept.

Businesses 397

An anonymous reader writes "Develop has an excellent piece up profiling a bunch of average to awful titles that flopped so hard they harmed or sunk their studio or publisher. The list includes Haze, Enter The Matrix, Hellgate: London, Daikatana, Tabula Rasa, and — of course — Duke Nukem Forever. 'Daikatana was finally released in June 2000, over two and a half years late. Gamers weren't convinced the wait was worth it. A buggy game with sidekicks (touted as an innovation) who more often caused you hindrance than helped ... achieved an average rating of 53. By this time, Eidos is believed to have invested over $25 million in the studio. And they called it a day. Eidos closed the Dallas Ion Storm office in 2001.'"

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Enter the Matrix was OK... (5, Insightful)

SeeSp0tRun (1270464) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835186)

If you consider crashing every 20 minutes, losing any save data you had, and having some video sequences prevent any further progress due to crashing.

...and that was on a console!

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (1)

snowraver1 (1052510) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835224)

I have yet to find a game based on a movie that hasn't sucked.

Re: Aliens vs Predator (2, Informative)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835290)

The first one was good given the era it came out in. The second one was a simultaneous improvement and a flop. And the new one looks to be alright.

Re: Aliens vs Predator (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30835848)

Ah but the first game (and I believe the second game) came out well before the movie.

Re: Aliens vs Predator (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30835888)

Umm, you may want to double-check your chronology there.

The AvP game (based on the DH comic) came out 10 years before the movie.

Re: Aliens vs Predator (1)

jgtg32a (1173373) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835970)

What movie was that based on?

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (5, Informative)

FinchWorld (845331) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835304)

Goldeneye N64.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (-1, Redundant)

LanMan04 (790429) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836180)

+1

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30835308)

Batman would like a word with you.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (1)

RemoWilliams84 (1348761) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835380)

If you are referring to arkham asylum, that was never a movie.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30835424)

Games are never clones of the movie. Movies are never clones of the game. This game was based upon the movie, and released around the same time.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (3, Insightful)

RemoWilliams84 (1348761) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835498)

Did you play the game and see the movie? Not even close to based on the movie.

Yeah, it had batman and joker in it, but that is about where the similarities stopped. If anything it was based on the comics.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30835314)

Goldeneye?

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (2, Insightful)

Frigga's Ring (1044024) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835332)

X-Men Origins: Wolverine Decent game but still 10x better than the movie

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (3, Funny)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835350)

I have always been partial to Superman 64.

But then again I like to poke needles through my eyeballs, too.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (3, Insightful)

nomadic (141991) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835372)

I have yet to find a game based on a movie that hasn't sucked.

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade springs to mind, GREAT old LucasArts game.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (2, Insightful)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835442)

Especially if you had a Roland MT-32/CM-32L/CM-64/LAPC-1.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (3, Funny)

Cyberblah (140887) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835414)

The Empire Strikes Back for the Atari 2600 wasn't bad, for a 2600 game.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (1)

el3mentary (1349033) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835468)

I have yet to find a game based on a movie that hasn't sucked.

Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King had a damn good PS2 game scoring well into the 90%'s in some reviews.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (1)

lorenlal (164133) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835692)

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom on NES.

That is, if you hasn't sucked with that was as awful as

That could be the worst game ever made... It's certainly the worst I ever played, and that includes Back to the Future...

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (1)

diskofish (1037768) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835768)

Karate Kid for NES!

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (5, Funny)

kenj0418 (230916) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835896)

I have yet to find a game based on a movie that hasn't sucked.

ET For the Atari 2600?

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (2, Informative)

Nursie (632944) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835994)

Quite enjoyed Ghostbusters. The 1984 version on the C64 that is :)

The recent PS3 game was also fun, but not earth shattering.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836040)

The Batman / Star Wars / Indiana Jones LEGO games are pretty damn fun.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (1)

pha3r0 (1210530) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836052)

MY rule of thumb, if it is based on a movie or toy keep walkin'.

and WTF is up with the spell checker in Firefox it doesn't know the word movie??? Damn it needs to be the afternoon already I need a drink.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (1)

Spellvexit (1039042) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836064)

I actually really liked Tron 2.0. It had its issues, like the fact that you broke your neck if you fell more than 7 feet, an odd weapon balance, and some annoying Super Mario Bros. jumping sequences. However, the aesthetics were gorgeous, the gameplay was fun, and the character customization was interesting.

Beyond the environment, I'm sure many folks would argue it wasn't a spectacular game, but it didn't suck. :)

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (1)

Sylos (1073710) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836136)

The Tron game was actually pretty good.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (2, Insightful)

MemoryDragon (544441) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836192)

Actually Star Trek A Final Unity was awesome, also add to that the really amazing new Batman Darkham Asylum, and add to the list the Original Hitchhikers guide game as well as the Blade Runner game done I think by either Interplay or Westwood.
I also thought the first Dune game was quite good (although I am pretty alone in this) and Dune 2 is mostly a classic because it single handedly redefined the genre of RTS by laying out all concepts which still exist nowadays within one game.
There are probably others for instance like the old Interplay TOS games, but this list instantly comes to my mind.

I think the formula to producing good movie based games is that it should not be a tie in to an existing movie, but let the developers free hand and enough time to create a gaming concept. All the examples I mentioned were not time limited tie ins but developed with a license but no actual movie date in mind. I think it is mostly the tie in games which suck (and Disney has done its fair share to cause that as well as the ET game) the reason is, that they are usually developed in a hurry mostly by just adjusting an existing engine to the movie characters.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (4, Informative)

nebaz (453974) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836194)

How about the original Star Wars vector graphics arcade game (Death Star run?) I always enjoyed that one.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (1)

futuresheep (531366) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836236)

All of the Lego movie games are great fun. Lego Star Wars Lego Batman Lego Indiana Jones Lego Indiana Jones 2

Actually the terminal hacking mini game rocked (2, Insightful)

gmezero (4448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835428)

The video game itself was tedious, but the that mini game off the main menu where you could hack the terminal was awesome good fun. Without checking YouTube first, I say aloud to no-one that a cut together edit of all of the cinemas would be nice to watch through. Now I just need to care enough this much later to bother looking.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (2, Interesting)

Knara (9377) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835446)

I never had a crash for Enter the Matrix, myself. I actually quite enjoyed it. I may have been the only one, I guess.

The bonus footage that fit into "Reloaded" was cool, too. But, I'm in the minority of liking the majority of that trilogy, as well.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (2, Insightful)

calzakk (1455889) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835950)

You're not the only one who enjoyed it, I did too, greatly :)

Enter The Matrix was somewhat unique. Unlike a typical game based on a movie, where you're basically playing the main character from the movie doing the same things in the same places, ETM was actually a precursor to The Matrix Reloaded and involved different characters and locations to set the scene for the movie. How cool was that? And how many other games have done this?!

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (5, Funny)

Stormwatch (703920) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836218)

There was no trilogy. Please refrain from spreading such lies. Thank you.

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (0, Offtopic)

ubrgeek (679399) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835528)

Wait ... Enter the Matrix was a Microsoft product? ;) (Enter the troll/offtopic points).

Re:Enter the Matrix was OK... (1)

theinvisibleguy (982464) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835634)

That's too bad, I never encountered any bugs in the game, on PS2. I actually thought it was a pretty good game, the fighting looked much better/more complex then it actually was, you could do some cool stunts, and the game had an actual story which contributed to the plot of the movie.

it's a shame... (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835200)

...making a game is hard work. I can't imagine what it would feel like to see your hard work (even if the result of that work is suckage) result in the ending of a developer.

Shenmue. (1)

Kagura (843695) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835436)

Shenmue. ;*(

All Right! (4, Funny)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835208)

This is just what we needed around here!

Another chance to moan about Duke Nukem Forever!

Hopefully someone bought rights to the title so we can continue to write about DNF. We need more server space dedicated to DNF writing! It's always just around the corner.

Re:All Right! (1)

0123456 (636235) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835246)

Hopefully someone bought rights to the title so we can continue to write about DNF.

That's what I was just thinking: if I was a bazillionaire I'd buy the rights and claim to still be in development just so it could become the longest-lived vaporware in the history of computing.

Re:All Right! (1)

Kral_Blbec (1201285) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835300)

already is

Re:All Right! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30835382)

already is

WinFS

Re:All Right! (3, Funny)

Jason Earl (1894) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835930)

GNU Hurd.

Re:All Right! (2, Funny)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836210)

Harsh, man. Way harsh. Any day now. You'll see. You'll all see!

Re:All Right! (1)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835496)

If I was a bazillonaire, considering all the evolution that had that game, would buy the rights, and keep the development in the same crazy way it was till now. The Singularity should not be so far away in that road.

Re:All Right! (1)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835356)

Hopefully someone bought rights to the title so we can continue to write about DNF.

It's still held by 3D Studios, but it'll be hard to continue development when they have no staff [kotaku.com] working on the project.

Re:All Right! (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30836062)

even with no staff the development will continue at the same pace it was before. actually, it may improve considering there's no one to force a do-over.

Re:All Right! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30835808)

This is just what we needed around here!

Another chance to moan about Duke Nukem Forever!

Hopefully someone bought rights to the title so we can continue to write about DNF. We need more server space dedicated to DNF writing! It's always just around the corner.

Long after computers are dust and computer gaming is a long forgotten pastime there will be temples built to the great God Nukem. His followers will patiently await his return with cries, "Duke Nukem Forever!"

Re:All Right! (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835872)

Every universe has its black holes. The gaming universe is no exception. In fact, there is one called DNF. Stay away, lest your company be sucked in and doomed never to return! Yes I know it's a beautiful site, but you *must* stay away from DNF.

You've all been warned.

Re:All Right! (1)

fm6 (162816) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836130)

Except that it isn't "failed". Vaporware can't fail, it's never had a chance to not succeed!

Hmm, maybe that's why it's still vaporware...

Bigger scale (3, Insightful)

hansamurai (907719) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835216)

E.T. nearly killed off an entire industry. Though I'm sure that's just what history remembers as its death blow.

Re:Bigger scale (2, Funny)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835274)

...but the game cartridges did make a nice little hill in Arizona.

Re:Bigger scale (4, Interesting)

Skuld-Chan (302449) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835638)

ET would have never killed off gaming - all it would have done is tighten the standards on what publishers would ship as acceptable (which actually happened) and people would tighten their standards on what they would buy before trying. ET if anything was probably good for the industry and consumers. Right now I think we are seeing a return of shovelware, and its effects. The economy is bad, and I know for a fact that I'm not the only one waiting for COD MW2 to end up in the bargain bin (60$ is just too much to take a chance on).

Same with MMO's - I'm sure somewhere Mythic for instance has a figure on how many box sales they will get on day one, and aren't nearly as concerned with how many people actually stay subscribed (just my observation - they just seem disinterested in actually addressing community concerns).

And yes I bought ET when it came out - its still in my box o carts wherever my 2600 is, and it wasn't the last pile of crap I ever spent good money on, but it certianly made me think more about my purchases after that.

Re:Bigger scale (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836000)

E.T. nearly killed off an entire industry. Though I'm sure that's just what history remembers as its death blow.

I second that, but TFA is talking specifically about games during the past decade.

Whatever games companies produce... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30835222)

once EA buys them it's game over.

Re:Whatever games companies produce... (1)

GerardAtJob (1245980) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835584)

Please mod parent insightful, not funny

Re:Whatever games companies produce... (1)

hansamurai (907719) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836116)

Somehow BioWare is surviving, even if they're pushing DLC more obnoxiously than ever.

Re:Whatever games companies produce... (1)

JorDan Clock (664877) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836232)

They're pushing DLC instead of patches it seems. Mass Effect for the PC still has a major MAJOR bug in the way weapons Overheat and stay that way until you reload a save. Unless you want to blame the company that did the port, Demiurge.

Re:Whatever games companies produce... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30836220)

"Catwoman" killed Argonaut IIRC, and that was published by EA.
"Turok" on the N64 put a big dent in Acclaim when it did not sell in Japan.

I wouldn't be surprised (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835244)

If The Fourth Monkey Island game hurt Lucas-arts. Not that it was a terrible game, but I definately doubt it did as well as its predecessors.

I'm not surprised the rights to make it went off to Telltale games. They have done a decent job with the episodic content of it. I have an itching feeling it won't be the end of that series though.

VtM:B (5, Insightful)

lavaforge (245529) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835258)

Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines was another game that killed the company. There's even an interview about it somewhere here on Slashdot.

Apparently it went way over budget, was laden with game breaking bugs, and had copy protection problems.

It's a shame, really, because the last 5 years of fan patching have made it kind of enjoyable.

Re:VtM:B (4, Insightful)

Tobor the Eighth Man (13061) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835420)

Came here to post this very game.

Troika was always an overly ambitious company. Their writing and setting development was top notch, but all their releases demonstrated an apparent lack of management oversight and nitty-gritty game programming/scripting expertise. Bloodlines is a great example: the first two and a half areas are brilliant, with rich characters and excellent writing and comparatively few bugs. It was among the best FPSRPGs I'd ever played.

Then the rest of the game is increasingly a trainwreck, until the last level is just a silly run and gun through a repetitive skyscraper, which was so regressive in terms of design that it smacked of FPS games pre-Half-Life. Tons of stuff was obviously cut from the game, and it seems quite likely they had to rush it out the door to make deadline, with stuff unfinished.

Arcanum had many of the same flaws as Bloodlines - stronger early game than endgame, cut or abandoned gameplay elements, bugs and a lack of fine-tuning - but on nowhere near the same scale.

Re:VtM:B (1)

LordAndrewSama (1216602) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835752)

I love both games, and still play them. I wish more games like them would come out. Without ruining the company, of course.

Re:VtM:B (1)

toastar (573882) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836010)

Came here to post this very game.

Troika was always an overly ambitious company. Their writing and setting development was top notch, but all their releases demonstrated an apparent lack of management oversight and nitty-gritty game programming/scripting expertise. Bloodlines is a great example: the first two and a half areas are brilliant, with rich characters and excellent writing and comparatively few bugs. It was among the best FPSRPGs I'd ever played.

Then the rest of the game is increasingly a trainwreck, until the last level is just a silly run and gun through a repetitive skyscraper, which was so regressive in terms of design that it smacked of FPS games pre-Half-Life. Tons of stuff was obviously cut from the game, and it seems quite likely they had to rush it out the door to make deadline, with stuff unfinished.

Arcanum had many of the same flaws as Bloodlines - stronger early game than endgame, cut or abandoned gameplay elements, bugs and a lack of fine-tuning - but on nowhere near the same scale.

I always liked that game, Granted i can't ever remember playing the end of it.

Re:VtM:B (1)

AP31R0N (723649) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836188)

Loved that game.

i think some of its trouble was due to using the HL2 code that was leaked. They had to change a bunch of stuff at the last minute. Or so i heard.

i didn't notice any game breaking bugs. Just some quirky movement stuff that was the same as the quirks in most FPSes.

Daikatana (1, Redundant)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835260)

Daikatana became synonymous with failure. But the cause of its failure can be traced back to John Romero's giant ego. He had convinced people that everything he wrote was worth gold. It's only fitting that in Doom 2, you had to shoot him in the head to beat the game. He's since retreated into obscurity, occasionally popping up in small gaming shops to assist in off-beat platforms.

Re:Daikatana (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30835540)

When John Romero faded from the scene, I just assumed his ego had grown so large that he had ascended to another plane of arrogance.

Haze... (1)

Skatox (1109939) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835272)

Haze was supposed to be one of the top games of PS3 and it totally sucked a lot!! bad graphics , bad controllers, stupid story and really short game.

Re:Haze... (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836102)

The bigger tragedy about Haze was that it appears to have significantly decreased the chances of Timesplitters 4 being made.

Not enough FPSs allow you to play as monkeys, zombies, sock puppets, zombie monkeys, robots, wood monsters, and robotic monkeys all in the same round.

DE3 (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30835460)

"By this time, Eidos is believed to have invested over $25 million in the studio. And they called it a day. Eidos closed the Dallas Ion Storm office in 2001.'""

But not before they squeezed out a cult favorite, Deus Ex.

Re:DE3 (1)

rarel (697734) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835982)

Wrong, DX was created by the Ion Storm Austin team lead by Warren Spector.

Although if anything, and without being an expert, it's probably all the focus on IS Dallas that allowed them to create such a polished gem. People moan about graphics and stuff, but Deus Ex wouldn't be Deus Ex if they had made better graphics and left out the story, sidequests and massive levels. They had a deadline and focused on the good bits.

Infocom (4, Informative)

vlm (69642) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835482)

Infocom made a great series of text adventure games, so they logically moved into the database arena, which sank the company.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infocom [wikipedia.org]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cornerstone_(software) [wikipedia.org]

Re:Infocom (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30836008)

To be fair, they started out as a serious database company, and just released the text adventure games for some quick cash as they happened to have them lying around. Database software was always the business plan from the outset; they just happened to suck at it.

Myth 3 (1)

ElusiveMind (1714020) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835626)

Myth 3 was originally done by MumboJumbo games and was so badly done that the dev team was fired the week it was released. Fortunately, there are some (mythwolfage.com) that are still doing stuff with it. MumboJumbo later resurfaced as some lame casino game making company... with an entirely different staff

Tomb Raider: Angel of Darkness (2, Interesting)

Jim Hall (2985) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835630)

TFA mentions Tomb Raider: Angel of Darkness as the game that tipped Eidos/Core over.

I first discovered the series with Tomb Raider 2. Since then, huge fan! I bought all the games for PS1, and a few for the Mac as well (I'd re-play the game on my in-laws' computer sometimes.)

When Eidos announced Angel of Darkness for PS2, I was obviously caught up in the hype. More memory and higher res meant more intricate puzzles and larger levels - this would be an amazing game. Or so I thought. Aside from buggy gameplay (and there was a lot of that) they changed the game mechanic to the point that it was like playing an entirely different game, but with Lara Croft in it. No tombs, no puzzles, just a lot of running around shooting things.

I quit the game before I got very far in it, the same sucked that bad. I recall making it just past the cemetary - which I understand is still pretty early in the game.

Still, good things came out of this fiasco: Tomb Raider: Legend was actually very good! Amazing what a new developer can do to breathe fresh life into a project. (That said, Uncharted is a better series.)

Re:Tomb Raider: Angel of Darkness (1)

MemoryDragon (544441) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836108)

Actually it is not just Tomb Raider Legend, every Tomb Raider so far, done by Crystal Dynamics is very good and among the best in the series, too bad that the series itself has been drained to death, so CD does not get the rewards they should for reviving the series in this excellent manner.

Quicksilver vanished with MOO3 (1)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835640)

it pretty much tanked and Atari quickly parted ways with them.

Re:Quicksilver vanished with MOO3 (1)

FooAtWFU (699187) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835830)

I got a copy of MOO3 used from a friend (for free). The funny part, I thought, was that because of the font in the manual, every time they said "Orion" it looked like "Onion".

An apt description of the game. It's got layers. Lotsa layers. And no cake-layers or parfait-layers, either. Layers that make you cry.

Re:Quicksilver vanished with MOO3 (1)

BobMcD (601576) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836184)

I remember really, really wanting to like this game. I even bought and played the Star Trek version of it...

I liked Enter the Matrix. (1)

bertoelcon (1557907) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835666)

I really did, it wasn't great but it was interesting in the Matrix Story to see parts from other point of view.

Re:I liked Enter the Matrix. (1)

Dremth (1440207) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836068)

I liked it too. I found it quite a surprise to see that game on the list. I especially liked the little terminal mini game.

most expensive game of "chicken", ever. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30835680)

The "Jay Leno Show" fiasco was the final nail in the coffin for NBC.
When Conan O'Brian bought the smoldering remains of the once-great network in 2012, he paid $17 and only two magic beans.

Game Quality and Profit are not correlated (1)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835686)

To make the assumption a "bad" game sank a company is hard to justify, considering "bad" games often sell much better than "good" ones.

There are a lot of companies that make bad products that are profitable (mine, for example) and many that make great products that can't stay in business.

In many cases, I would bet that a game company runs the risk of going out of business because their product is too good (or bent on being too good, and never hits the shelves in time to start making profit).

Whatever happened to (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835748)

MYST

I don't think Ubisoft helped turn out a profitable title.

Re:Whatever happened to (1)

ExE122 (954104) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835972)

I saw MYST available as an iPod app. I didn't feel like dishing out $5.99 for it so I can't tell you if it's any good. However it's a sign that somebody somewhere is still getting picking up some loose change from it.

The "remastered" original Monkey Island game is also available on Steam and iPod. It has received high marks on both.

Vanguard (2, Insightful)

Taeolas (523275) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835854)

Surprised they didn't mention Vanguard. It killed Sigil software and the only reason it's still on Life Support is SOE bought it out on the cheap. (See also: Matrix Online before that one was finally killed)

Re:Vanguard (1)

Bieeanda (961632) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836228)

Vanguard's actually undergone some development since McQuaid sold it to SOE for cocaine money.

MXO, on the other hand, was forced on SOE as part of an agreement for the rest of Warner's licenses.

Tabula Rasa - it could have been great (1)

hlee (518174) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835906)

I tried out Tabula Rasa a few months before it was shut down, at a point when most of its serious problems were sorted out. But poor game mechanics was its biggest weakness.

What annoyed me most was how it was touted as a FPS/RPG hybrid. IMO for anything to be deemed an FPS, it must rely on players to aim their weapons and the game would utilize collision detect to ascertain hits. Tabula Rasa did not do this - you had to select what enemies to shoot at, and it was all chance based like most MMOs out there. To make things worse, you had to look at your opponents in order to select them - you couldn't do it explicitly by clicking on them with your mouse.

I think the game would have been successful if they figured out how to do a proper MMO FPS with proper collision detect. Even if the world was largely instanced, and they limited player numbers in these zones, it would be a good start. It doesn't even need complex character builds.

Re:Tabula Rasa - it could have been great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30836138)

You sounds like you're talking about Borderlands.

Re:Tabula Rasa - it could have been great (1)

BobMcD (601576) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836216)

I tried it and liked it, a lot. The wife enjoyed it, too. The problem we had was this is where it ended. There wasn't any sense of community and we couldn't get anyone interested in it. As a single player game, it kind of fell short.

Hellgate wasn't that bad (1)

afidel (530433) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835936)

It just wasn't good enough to get them to where they could release Mythos which would have been the cash cow. Like many small businesses their essential failing was being under-capitalized, not necessarily a terrible product.

Racing Legends (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30835960)

Try a 12 year delay for a racing product, any product, especially when it comes from the West Brothers. "Who are the West Brothers" you ask? Sit back and let me tell you a quick tale about a long piece of vaporware.

Backstory: Two decades ago in the late 90s, the West Brothers were contracted to do a game called "World Sports Cars". They had previously been on the development teams of such arcade classics as "Hard Drivin" and "Race Driving". Chris and Tony were certainly at the forefront of realistic driving sims. Games like these certainly influenced later PC sims such as "Grand Prix Legends". So when time came for a GT style game, the Wests were a natural fit. And so the development started on WSC. After numerous DNF styled delays, they were told by their publisher to take off. Then in 2001 they announced Racing Legends, a sprawling race sim that would encompass careers, cars with lifespans. It was an ambitious project, especially for a 2 man team. Their last update was in October 2003, their last communique was in January of 2004. Since then? Nothing, nada, zilch. Once in a while their 3rd member (Gregor Veble, physics consultant) will respond to a jab with a very vague answer that does not even confirm it is still being worked on. Here's what you need to read:

http://www.racing-legends.com/news.htm [racing-legends.com] [racing-legends.com]

http://www.west-racing.com/forum/index.php?topic=2395.0 [west-racing.com] [west-racing.com]

Google up on WSC to gain a greater understanding of the Wests, and how they are the rightful heirs to the DNF vaporware crown. People have gone to college, graduated with Comp Sci degrees and actually put out multiple games in the same time that the West Brothers have delivered...NOTHING. The multi-class racing sim has been ursurped by Dave Kaemmer (of Sierra/Papyrus NASCAR Racing fame) and his iRacing game.

It probably goes without saying that... (2, Interesting)

BForrester (946915) | more than 4 years ago | (#30835978)

Duke Nukem Forever didn't kill the studio; the studio killed themselves off without the need of any additional assistance.

The other examples are cases of products being buggy, or misguided, or overzealous... but any project is doomed to fail when the project team doesn't have a goal, and doesn't really work on the project.

Final Fantasy was supposed to kill Square (4, Interesting)

joeflies (529536) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836080)

From what I've read, the whole reason it was called Final Fantasy in the first place was that the company was planning to close and Final Fantasy was their swan song. They weren't expecting a miracle since they were treading in new waters and just decided to publish their last game. And lo and behold, their final game that was supposed to be the end of the company turned out to be their saving throw.

Never forget Ultima 9 (1)

MemoryDragon (544441) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836124)

It single handedly killed one of the most beloved franchises in computer gaming history (that and EA that is who still has not figured out which gem they had bought with the Ultima franchise)

Command & Conquer: Renegade (1)

BeatYaBad (1255058) | more than 4 years ago | (#30836134)

C&C: Renegade was Westwood's attempt to make C&C a FPS. It took forever to develop and the game looked dated by the time it came out. It had a lot of gameplay that we later saw in the Battefield series (but it was done right there).

Elite 4 is an inside joke in Oolite. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30836156)

Elite came out in 1984, and was one of the first (if not THE first) truly open-ended game. So you would think the fifteen year gap between Elite III (Frontier: First Encounters) and now would be enough time for Braben to release The Outsider and get working on Elite 4.

Nope. [destructoid.com] That's why it's an inside joke in Oolite that Elite 4 is STILL coming soon!

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