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Thursday, August 11, 2005

Chevron One Locked

I won't quote from the PR release since it's pretty old news that the Stargate game was cancelled. I guess keeping yet another mediocre licensed shooter off the shelves is in some ways a good thing.

The Stargate shows have a lot of gaming potential though. While I keep expecting the franchise to dwindle, both SG-1 and Atlantis have kept a pretty brisk pace at making their universe an interesting place to visit on a weekly basis. This is a mythos with real depth, history and dynamics now ... and ripe for interactive media.

A good shooter, though, I think would have been hard to pull off. Unless they put in some serious mindgrease on it and tried to break the mold (see upcoming RoundTable on innovation in the FPS genre), it would have been at best a semi-decent episode with shooting. Aspirations that it would be a SG themed Halo would be a great thought, but I imagine unrealistic. And it seems JoWood agrees.

I don't understand why JoWood doesn't utilize the Silent Storm engine and make the next great X-Com that everyone and their dog has been wanting. Heck, go old school. Call up Codo Games and have them use their latest RebelStar engine to do a GBA game of the same vein. Bases would be setup on far away planets instead of on Earth, there could be diplomacy options as well as research options, and instead of cutscene-ish interceptor screens, you put in a turn based space combat system.

Is the market for turn based strategy really gone so far south that shooters will become the norm? So spice up the genre, make it coop, make it PBEM, add in Internet coverage of the war. It's just agonizing to see such a simple marriage between genre and source material languish.


shane said...

Thanks for the compliment on the show Josh, Stargate and Atlantis have a huge following and there's enormous potential to make a successful game if done right - as you mentioned. It's a shame that we have to wait now for the game wheels to start turning again.


Josh said...

Well thanks goes to you as well for helping them make it look good. Bizarre side question for you if you can answer it - was I right that the handhelds some of the Atlantis crew uses are actually Zodiacs?

I am glad that they didn't just decide to do the normal make-the-deadline-and-run of the industry. I'd rather see a restart than a false start. And if they are going to make a shooter, I hope they stick with either Unreal or go with Source as an engine, since I know there's avid subculture waiting to mod this franchise, and a commercial product with an open framework would allow them to do it legit-like.

shane said...

Funny I was going to post about the Zodiac dying out but I never got around to it. I'm probably not allowed to name the gadgets we use, I'm not exactly sure. Regardless, yes we do use a lot of different handheld gadgets. The PDA's are quite popular and possibly in the future, certain handheld game systems might be used. As well as the usual laptops and tablet PC's we use regularly.

Yeah I'm glad to that they are taking their time to get it right and those 2 engines have enormous potential. Oh yeah I totally forgot about MGM demanding the Mod'ers to cease and desist on the Stargate mod for...what was it, Half Life2? That's kind of analogous to Sony suing Lik-Sang for selling their PSP in places they aren't permitted. Talk about hurting your profits.

Josh said...

I think most recently there was an HL2 one, but I'm most familiar with the UT/2003/4 one ... which very bizarrely unhinged itself from the franchise to do a "likemod" under the name Atlantis, like some kind of creepy foreshadowing. Last I checked, the mod released an alpha and disbanded though.

I've got fairly mixed feelings when it comes to IP mods. I respect an entity's right to control what's being done with their work, but it usually ends up being a lot more antagonistic than it needs to be. Recently companies like LucasFilm have played with cooperative agreements with mod teams to some success, and it would be neat to see that become more of a norm. Among other things, crushing mods is just bad PR.