At the DICE Summit in Las Vegas, key Blizzard Entertainment staff members revealed the many games they’ve secretly canceled over the years. Wired’s Game|Life blog has the full story.
Several of the games listed are old news, such as the much-hyped Warcraft Adventures: Lord of the Clans, Shattered Nations, and Pax Imperia, a game Blizzard was originally set to publish before beginning work on the very similar Starcraft. The game was finally published by THQ as Pax Imperia: Eminent Domain.
The remaining games (Games People Play, Crixa, Nomad, Raiko, and Denizen) are all being revealed for the first time, though Blizzard only provided the names of these canceled titles, opting not to go into any greater detail. The only hint at what one of these games might have been comes from Blizzard’s former Art Director Michael Dashow, who once featured concept art he did for an unnamed, canceled Blizzard game that was in development from 2001-2003. Sadly, Blizzard no longer allows him to showcase the art on his site, but through the magic of Archive.org, it’s still readily available. Well, the thumbnails are, at least. Regardless of which of those five canceled games this concept art comes from, one thing is clear: Blizzard is known for releasing such fantastic, polished games because they’re not afraid to cancel the in-development duds before they become critical and commercial failures. Clearly, a lesson more developers and publishers would be better off learning.