Microsoft

LA Noire [Beta / Cut Content – PS3 / Xbox 360]

LA Noire is a third person action / investigation game developed by Team Bondi and published by Rockstar in 2011. In an interview with Brendan McNamara, we can read that the game was going to have a desk where you would have to deal with burglaries and fraud – the desk was known as Bunko and Burglary. The entire desk had about eleven cases, all of which were cut due to the fact that the cases couldn’t fit on entire blue ray disk. Quoting McNamara from another article:

“We had a Bunko and Burglary desk – bunko is fraud and burglary is just people robbing houses and stuff – we had eleven full cases for that, which we wrote and did the design for to a certain extent – we even did the art for them too, but it just got to a point where we were never going to fit it on one Blu-ray,”

Evidence of the Burglary desk can be found in the game, such as at the beginning of the homicide desk, where the captain of homicide greets Cole Phelps after he earned a promotion from burglary. It’s also implied during the case Manifest Destiny that Harold Caldwell was Cole’s partner for that desk. Dialog implies that Harold Caldwell knows Cole Phelps – again implying that burglary was going too planned for LA Noire.

Finally, there was also a type of Mini-game (that was also cut) where the player could have made a captain angry. The player and assigned partner would have to complete certain crimes (car chases, shootings, etc) in order to get another case from the captain. Quoting the article

 “There was a kind of system where if you failed a case your captain would scream at you and you’d go out and do hot car chases or smaller robberies and muggings and all that kind of stuff in the world”

“You’d have to do enough of them to get to a point where you get offered another case, but as I said that got cut because I thought it was too much of a distraction.”

If there is any concept art from the cut desk, please share it here so we can add it to the article!

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My Amazing Story [Xbox 360 – Cancelled]

My Amazing Story was a family-oriented project developed by Planet Moon Studios. Originally started as a Wii prototype in 2007, Microsoft Game Studios soon approached the developer with a publishing contract for a Xbox 360 retail release.

The title went through different art styles and had various gameplay changes. In later stages of the project Planet Moon Studios prototyped early Kinect playability concepts and even pitched a proposal for a graphical overhaul of the Xbox Live Avatars at Microsofts’ request.

The project was halted in early 2009 when Microsoft Game Studios changed their focus to lifestyle Kinect games and established franchises. Planet Moon Studios were closed down in late 2010.

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Grabbed by The Ghoulies [Beta – Xbox]

Grabbed by The Ghoulies is an action game that was developed by Rare and released for the original Xbox in 2003. As we can read on Wikipedia, before any details of the game were publicised, it was widely considered that Grabbed by the Ghoulies would be the subtitle to the next Conker the Squirrel game, after Conker’s Bad Fur Day. The game was originally intended to be a much larger in scope open-world platformer but due to the Microsoft buyout in 2002 and time constraints a simpler design and concept was adopted.

Grabbed by The Ghoulies was initially going to be released on the Nintendo GameCube and in the final Xbox game you can unlock a trailer from E3 2001, that should show the project when it was still on the Nintendo console (you can find it below). Thanks to Rareware Archives we can see many concept arts and beta screens, that show early designes of the characters, unused enemies and other interesting differences. As we can read in their description for the Grabbed by The Ghoulies beta 2001 video:

A lot has certainly changed from the game we’re familiar with, as the video includes a few cut enemies mucking about, early working models for the Zombie Ghoulies and Coopers girlfriend Amber and a surprise from Gweneth, the sneering Ghouly at the end, who was ultimately cut as well.

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The Avengers [Cancelled – Xbox 360 / PS3 / PC / Wii U]

The Avengers [Cancelled – Xbox 360 / PS3 / PC / Wii U]

The Avengers is a cancelled first person co-op beat ‘em up game that was planned to  be released alongside the 2012 superhero movie of the same name. The project was under development at THQ Studio Australia (Studio Oz) until THQ decided to close it. It was being worked on for Xbox 360, PS3 and PC; with further plans for a Wii U release.

The Cancelled THQ's The Avengers videogame

The logo and title screen of THQ’s The Avengers.

Pre-production on the Avengers video game began in August 2010 at the Brisbane-based, THQ Studio Australia with approximately 80 employees working on it. During the first months of preliminary development, it was originally being planned as a third person game.

An Avengers movie – with Skrulls?

The Avengers - Cancelled Game Concept Art

When details of the project began to leak online in September 2011, there was a number of claims and rumors from various sites that the game was in some way connected to Marvel Studios’ Avengers movie, which was to be released the following year. Concept art was soon uncovered depicting the heroes facing down the Skrulls, an alien race from the Marvel comics. This lead some to believe that the upcoming film would also feature Skrulls, through the assumption that the game was directly tied into it. Jeremy Love, an artist who worked on the title for THQ was adamant that this was never the case:

“[It was] totally unrelated to the film. We were given early film art to use as reference for certain things but that’s about it.”

He continued, elaborating on possible sources of the confusion:

“Some toys were released before the film which were based on designs we had done for the game. People naturally jumped on that and drew their own conclusions. When the game was cancelled, some footage and art was leaked which also fueled speculation that the Skrull race would feature in the upcoming film.”

 

Butcher [Xbox 360 – Prototype]

The Butcher was one of many character prototypes created by Rare Ltd. in 2008. When the company’s direction shifted to Kinect software, all work on this prototype was abandoned. Currently we don’t know what kind of game Rare planned to use the Butcher into, or even if it would ever be used in some commercial project. As far as we know, this could have been a character study, without any gameplay connected at all. Only a few images and animations remain, to preserve the existence of this project.

Thanks to Moren for the contribution!

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