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Hyped Up Games That Have Gone Suspiciously Quiet

The hype train is a powerful, high octane juggernaut when it kicks into gear, but it can disappear off into the distance just as easily. Most games that make it far enough into development to get gamers into a frenzy happen right on schedule or relatively close, barring a well-documented delay or two. But every year, there's a crop of high profile games that go eerily silent for far too long. 


It could be a good thing, because the developers are hard at work (like when a Rockstar game is on the horizon). It could mean a creative changing of the guard (such as what happened with Metroid Prime 4). Or it could be an outright catastrophe (e.g. Duke Nukem Forever).

Whatever the case may be, there's a slew of games out there we'd all like to hear the good word about. Stick around while we give you the rundown on a few of them.

Bayonetta 3

Last major update: a reveal trailer during the Game Awards in 2017.

It's always seemed like sheer luck and a whole lot of love keeping Bayonetta in our lives. The first game, while critically acclaimed and beloved by everyone who played it, just barely sold a million copies. It was only through Nintendo's good graces that the equally brilliant sequel got made, though it sold even less. It's a miracle that Nintendo saw fit to keep our favorite witch around, which made the Bayonetta 3 announcement a blessed surprise.


It's rather unlike PlatinumGames to go completely radio silent after announcing a new title, but that's where we're at with Bayonetta 3. There's been just a single teaser dropped — showing Bayonetta herself in a bit of a tight spot — and the Bayonetta 1 & 2 bundle for the Switch, which hit early 2018. Sure, we have her stint on the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate roster to tide us over, but it's nothing compared to the M-rated glory Platinum has promised.

Crystal Dynamics' Avengers project

Last major update: the initial announcement trailer, early 2017.

In the time since Crystal Dynamics announced they were working with Marvel on an Avengers game, six films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe have been released. Unless they've somehow secretly prepared the game for release by July, we'll get at least three more movies before it hits shelves. Half the cast will have gotten snapped out of existence and (we hope) resurrected before we see actual gameplay. Hell, we've even gotten a surprise Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3 trailer, with gameplay involving the Children of Thanos, since then.


So, what exactly is happening? Well, the smart money says much of the fault lies with Crystal Dynamics choosing to prioritize Shadow of the Tomb Raider, and it's probably not a coincidence that the company started making moves on this game right around the time Shadow went gold. It still feels like maybe Crystal Dynamics showed their hand a wee bit too early, but not having a big fancy Lara Croft game to push out means we'll probably be hearing about this one sooner than later.

Final Fantasy VII Remake

Last major update: a real pretty gameplay trailer from PlayStation Experience 2015.

It's certainly aggravating that the Final Fantasy VII remake hasn't materialized four years after its coming out party, but it's not a surprise at this point. Modern Square Enix is a looming beast, moving slowly and taking its time. It's been so ubiquitous the past few years, it's easy to forget that Final Fantasy XV took a decade to materialize, changing consoles, engines, and even titles along the way.


It's doubtful Square will do something annoying like pawn Final Fantasy VII onto the PS5, and for what it's worth, a recent article in the Japanese press seems to suggest the production is going rather well, creatively. Even for an undertaking as massive as this, though, silence is deafening, and after gamers waited so long for Square Enix to give the masses what they want, some official word would be appreciated. Still, the way it sounds, development is far enough along where, well, there may actually be no getting off this train.

Dead Island 2

Last major update: the initial announcement trailer from 2014.

Dead Island is one of those games that will always be most famous for things that have nothing to do with the game itself. Sure, a fair amount of folks played the first game, but more people remember that tearjerker of an initial trailer more than the game. For good reason, of course — it's still an effective bit of storytelling, and the only thing it has in common with the full game is that there are zombies at an island resort.


The sequel is tangentially famous for an arguably less laudable reason, though. The game has changed developers three times since its initial announcement (currently, it's in the hands of LittleBigPlanet 3 devs Sumo Digital), in the same period that the first game's developer, Techland, has managed to finish Dying Light, pump out some extensive DLC for it, and get deep into development on a sequel which also has a strong chance of hitting stores before this does. Publisher Deep Silver swears it's still coming, but the chances of the wait truly being worth it in this instance get lower by the day.


Last major update: Techland's CEO swearing up and down in a 2016 Guardian article that the game was still happening.

Techland's got a game missing in action all their own: a first-person medieval hack-n-slash title that was supposed to hit sometime in 2015. And it's not like that was an empty promise, either — the game's big E3 trailer had real gameplay in it, and was actually looking pretty decent, all things considered. It seemed kinda like Painkiller and Hexen happening all at once.


So, what exactly happened? Well, the easy answer here is Dying Light, which was absolutely a sure thing, and considering Dead Island 2 most certainly wasn't, it looks like Techland chose wisely to put Hellraid on the backburner. Still, there's a perfectly good time waiting to be had with Hellraid. The world could use a grim medieval title that doesn't take itself too seriously, and this looked like it was going to fit the bill. Alas, with a Dying Light sequel already well on its way, we're going to be waiting a while for it.

Kentucky Route Zero: Act V

Last major update: the traditional interstitial episode bridging from Act IV.

Of all the series testing the patience of fans, Kentucky Route Zero is certainly one that's actually earned the benefit of the doubt. It is a precious jewel of a game, whose low-fi production belies an incredible amount of world-building and complexity which has always been worth the wait.


But what a wait it's been. Never mind the fact that Act IV itself ends on a massive cliffhanger, but Act V being the final episode of the series doesn't help. Of course, these games have already set a standard for excruciatingly long development times — the wait between Act III and Act IV was two years!

But really, much of the impatience comes from spontaneity. The episodes don't really get a lead-up before they release, they just appear out of nowhere one day. Granted, that makes every episode a wonderful surprise, but it means the finale — and a promised Switch port — could literally happen any day now.

Tekken x Street Fighter

Last major update: Tekken director Katsuhiro Harada stating the game was "no longer in active development" back in 2016.

Maybe it was just that the fighting game market was a crowded field when this game's predecessor, Street Fighter x Tekken, hit. While the game did okay, it was still short of the mark in terms of what a crossover between these gods of the fighting game genre should've done. It's not surprising, really, considering Street Fighter IV was a bit overexposed, while Tekken 6 and Tag Tournament were just kinda there. Combine that with the next generation of consoles being right around the corner, and the game just wasn't all that primed to really connect with an audience.


Fast forward to 2019. Capcom has just gotten the Street Fighter V back on solid ground with the Arcade Edition updates, Tekken 7 is one of the best selling titles in the series since Tekken 3, and it still isn't done with updates. Moreover, we already got a tiny taste of the crossover when Akuma showed up in Tekken 7

In short, the world might finally be ready for Tekken x Street Fighter. It's just a matter of Harada taking a breather and making it happen. According to him, it's already 30% done, just waiting for the opportunity to move forward. 

1666: Amsterdam

Last major update: director Patrice Désilets wrangling the rights to make the game away from Ubisoft.

Patrice Désilets has had a hell of a time since leaving Ubisoft in 2010. Despite being responsible for the company's golden goose franchise, Assassin's Creed, Désilets has struggled to get 1666 off the ground ever since. He unfortunately had the bad luck of trying to get it going at the Montreal branch of THQ, which filed for Chapter 11 a year after Désilets started development. THQ Montreal was then swallowed up (in the weirdest irony ever) by Ubisoft, who summarily fired him and left 1666 in a weird limbo state, despite quite a lot of work having already gone into it.


The good news is that Désilets now has the rights back, and is allowed to keep developing it. The bad news is he's already moved on to a game called Ancestors: The Humankind Odyssey, which has just recently been announced.

There is footage of 1666 from a 2016 developers' conference in Croatia. Even though it's very much a last-gen game, it essentially looks like the lovechild of Assassin's Creed and Dishonored, and that's very much something worth chasing. Whether we'll ever actually see it come to fruition remains to be seen.


Last major update: according to Waypoint, Wild Sheep Studios has been quietly hiring animators and artists for the last couple years, but nothing big and official since 2015.

Michel Ancel's been able to pretty much write his own ticket in the gaming industry, and rightfully so. He's responsible for not just the first Beyond Good and Evil, but more recently two of the greatest platformers ever conceived: Rayman Origins and Rayman Legends. So, when he came out at Gamescom in 2014 with WiLD, a game that not only looked fantastic but already had a big honkin' chunk of gameplay ready to go, the world went nuts. And then the world waited. And waited. And waited.


And then, something incredible occurred that made the entire world forget WiLD was even happening: Beyond Good & Evil 2.

So, where did WiLD go? Every so often, Ancel and Wild Sheep Studios post what seem to be random photos of their teams at work, but nothing yet about the fruits of their labors. At this point, it's folly to believe we're going to see anything of the sort until after Beyond Good & Evil 2 is done. Still, considering we've been waiting five years for WiLD and 15 years for a Beyond Good & Evil sequel, let's not complain.

Half-Life 3

Last major update: oh, who are we kidding?

This one just might be the unfinished symphony of gaming. It almost seems redundant to recall where we're at on this. Half-Life 2: Episode Two ended on the mother of all cliffhangers. For reasons beyond all logic and comprehension, Valve seems to be absolutely refusing to deliver the follow-up, their employees seem to be banned from even mentioning it, and as we are all well aware, the company has, uh, very different priorities now. Remember when we mentioned how long Final Fantasy XV took to make? Fun trivia: the same year Episode Two dropped is the year Square conceived of Final Fantasy Versus XIII, the game that would get almost completely reworked over a decade to become Final Fantasy XV.


It would be easier to let go if the notoriously secretive gaming cabal that is Valve would just put One Free Bullet in the back of the game's head and officially cancel it, but they won't even do that. Many a supposed leak has occurred over the years, most recently and notably from former Valve writer Marc Laidlaw, who dropped what has been assumed to be the last known story outline for the game. Without being able to corroborate details, though, it's hard to be certain of much. It's like having a loved one in a coma, but their parents have barred everyone from the hospital.

And so, we continue to wait for the Freeman to finish what he started.