There is nothing worse than getting super excited for an awesome looking new video game just to have the game canceled. Every once in a while, one of these games will rise from the dead and finally be released to the public. Look at Duke Nukem Forever. That game was in development for fifteen years and canceled multiple times before it was ever released. It didn't get good reviews when it came out in 2011, but it was pretty great by 2001 standards. If nothing else, I enjoyed the satisfaction of finally getting something that I had wished for every night before I went to bed. Here are canceled video games that I hope come out.
Shenmue was a wildly awesome open world adventure game. It was most well known for it's really sweet story. Unfortunately, they planned that story to finish over several games. The story was never finished. The makers of Shenmue had teased a number of times that they might make Shenmue 3. I don't think it will ever happen. I think they just enjoy torturing us with the hope that it might one day come out.
If Reich had actually been finished, it might have been up there in popularity with Gears Of War or Bioshock. It's a pretty standard FPS shooter except that you have telekinesis and can pretty much blow up anything. The gameplay footage that was leaked is all we'll ever get to see of what we might have been able to have. The game was canceled because of financial difficulties, but I like to think the real reason is that they made the game so good that the main character came out of the game and in to the real world.
Star Fox 2
This was going to come out so late in the life of the SNES that Nintendo was worried that it would conflict with the N64. Don't get me wrong. I love Star Fox 64, but I want both of them. Do you realize how awful it is that we live in a world with a finished and unreleased Star Fox game? When I wake up in the morning, I can feel that there is a better universe where this game exists. I feel it in my heart and my soul.
Highlander: The Game
Highlander is a series of movies and TV shows about immortals who fight each other with swords. This game was going to start in Ancient Rome and move forward through time all the way to the modern era. I'm a sucker for anything to do with swords or history so I was pretty excited that this was going to be a game entirely comprised of sword fighting through time. Of course if it's anything like the rest of the franchise, this game would have spawned about 10 terrible sequels so maybe it was better that it wasn't released.
Ender's Game: Battle Room
Ender's Game is one of my favorite sci-fi books. After the first time I finished it, I set the book down and said out loud, "My first child will be named Ender." The other people on the plane thought I was a real weirdo. This game was going to focus on the zero gravity battle room. It's kind of like space paintball. The game was based on the Unreal 3 engine so it was probably going to be pretty sweet. Despite having the blessing of the author, the game was canceled.
Bonk: Brink Of Extinction
We are way overdue for a new Bonk game. Bonk is one of the most underrated platformer franchises. With the wave of old games being brought back like Mega Man and Sonic, it seemed like a perfect time to release another Bonk game. Most of the games on this list were canceled for financial reasons or because the game wasn't as good as they hoped. This one was canceled because of the 2011 Japanese earthquake.
When it was announced that Earthbound 64 was coming out, people went insane. It was originally developed for the N64 with all of it's cell shaded glory. When it was canceled, the internet let out a collective "Noooooooooo!" They ended up using the plot from this game for a Japanese Game Boy Advance game that came out 6 years later. At least we got something.
Half-Life 2: Episode 3
Half-Life 2 was supposed to end in a really awesome three part trilogy. Part 1 and 2 came out, but part 3 was never released. Episode 2 ended with a cliffhanger where it seemed like the bad guy aliens were going to take over the entire Earth. I guess we should just assume that they were successful and everyone was killed or turned in to slaves. They most likely canceled the game for a rumored Half-Life game with a more open world. Hopefully, they don't just reboot the franchise and at least sort of address what was done about that whole alien invasion thing.
Drac's Night Out
This was an NES game that sounds insanely morbid. You basically wander around levels as Dracula sucking people's blood. The end goal of the game was to suck the blood of your girlfriend. I don't know why it was canceled, but it probably had something to do with playing a murderer. That sort of things flies now, but back in the day Nintendo tended to look down on it. Oh, did I forgot to mention that the game was an advertisement for the Reebok Pump for some reason. I'm mostly just bummed that it didn't get a bunch of sequels based on other monsters like The Creature From The Black Lagoon wearing New Balances or the Smoke Monster from Lost wearing Uggs.
Mega Man Universe
This might be the greatest canceled game of all time. In this version of Mega Man, players would be able to create their own Megaman 2 levels and share them on-line with friends and other players. They also planned to allow you to bring in other characters from Capcom games like Street Fighter and Ghosts n' Goblins to play on the user created levels. They ended up releasing Mega Man 9 and Mega Man 10 which were both fun, but I really wanted to play on a Megaman level that was shaped like an unmentionable body part.
What released games do you wish had been canceled? Let me know on twitter @zachlunch or in the comments below!