Full Throttle: Hell on Wheels is the cancelled FT “sequel” that was announced in mid 2002 by LucasArts, for Windows and, for the first time in the series, PlayStation 2 and Xbox. The game was to be an action-adventure, with more emphasis on action and fighting than adventure. Sean Clark was named the project lead of Hell on Wheels and the development progressed smoothly until late 2003, when it was abruptly canceled.
Just months prior to that, at E3 2003, a playable demo was shown and a teaser trailer was released by LucasArts. Simon Jeffery (then president of LucasArts) said that “We do not want to disappoint the many fans of Full Throttle, and hope everyone can understand how committed we are to delivering the best-quality gaming experience that we possibly can” in the official press release. Critics cited poor graphics compared to other 3D action adventures of the time and Tim Schafer’s lack of involvement in the project as possible reasons for its cancellation. Additionally, Roy Conrad, the original voice actor for Ben, died in 2002.
Hell on Wheels would have been set in El Nada, Ben’s “old stomping ground”, whose roads have been mysteriously destroyed. Ben believes that one of the new gangs introduced in the game, the Hound Dogs, are behind this but soon discovers a more sinister and murderous plot. Together with Father Torque and Maureen, he would have thwarted the (unnamed) villain’s plan and protected “the freedom of the open road”. [Info from Wikipedia]
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Here’s an article with information on Hell On Wheels and the other cancelled sequel, Payback.
I didnt know about Payback, there are no screens of it, right?
I doubt it; the article says they’d only just started making the 3D models when the project was cancelled.
Retro Gamer #62 has a new description of Payback from Larry Ahern, who designed ‘a version of it that never got off the drawing board before [he] quit, and the bloody remains of it were handed over to another team’. Some of it we already knew from the Classic Adventure Gaming article. ‘The villain was a Senator with an anti-biker agenda, pushing to replace the worn-out highways with new, biker-unfriendly hover lanes. The game also featured Ben’s estranged weasel-of-a-brother, who was mixed up in one of the Senator’s shady operations, and a more central lead for Father Torque. Maureen had a cameo, but the female lead was a reporter who covers Ben after his subsequent fame for the alleged murder of Malcolm Corley. We had some fun new biker gangs also, like the Dragons, who sported flamethrowers on the handlebars of their bikes, and the Leeches, a gang in rocket-powered side-cars that cruise the highways jumping from vehicle to vehicle and attaching to them to syphon fuel.’
The Retro Gamer also talks about cuts to the original Full Throttle: ‘At around four hours’ duration, Full Throttle was a short game… Yet this was never meant to be the case, merely a result of budget restrictions due to the huge amount of animation involved. “We cut a huge section of the game that centred on Ricky Myron’s stunt show, and I think a few other puzzles around the Mink Ranch. We hated to lose it, and ideally wanted to cut something around half that size, but everything else was so critical to the story that Ricky was the only thing we could lose without a major redesign…”‘
Thanks Robert! I promise that i’ll make a page about Payback sooner or later, but i’m still hopefull to be able to find some screenshots :P