Xbox

Pumpkin Man [Xbox, PC – Cancelled]

Pumpkin Man is a cancelled third person shooter that was in development by Metro3d and Red-Purple Game Technology, planned to be released on the original Xbox and PC. Players would take the role of a dead guy named Joshua, trying to open the gates of hell to let demons celebrate Halloween on earth.

The game was shown at E3 2003 and some websites such as Psillustrated and Gaming Nexus wrote about it:

“In Pumpkin Man, Halloween is the most important night for the forces of evil where Hell spirits are allowed to use the Crystal Seal and visit Earth for a single day. To Hell’s misfortune, the path to Earth was suddenly sealed with the All Saints Crystal, and the Gates of Hell officially became the path of no return.

It’s up to the Clown, a legendary leader known throughout every corner of Hell, to begin organizing a secret fight to reopen the Gates of Hell on Halloween. Meanwhile, Joshua, a small-town boy is accidentally killed and becomes a peddler in Hell.  Even in his afterlife, he could not forget what a girl once said, “Joshua will definitely become a hero.  I want to be his bride on that day.”  As Joshua ends up accused of revolting against the leadership of Hell and imprisoned in the Slave Ground, the Clown can’t fight alone and Joshua is his only hope!”

“A large emphasis has been placed on the four-player support although there will be an entirely unique experience on the single-player side of things. Currently there are plans to have 40 multiplayer levels, 20 single-player levels, 25 different enemies and 13 different weapons.”

Unfortunately Metro3d filed for bankruptcy in 2004 and Pumpkin Man was canned and forgotten by everyone, until July 2021 when u/2dmee shared on Reddit a playable demo they found in a Taiwanese online forum (uploaded on Archive):

“A couple of years ago I started buying new & sealed retro games from China/Taiwan and reselling them on Ebay UK. One day I came across a big box PC game and the artwork looked really good and it caught my attention, but I couldn’t find any info about the game anywhere, despite being quite well versed in the art of advanced google search syntax.

“The seller that offered the game for sale also had some other titles that were produced by Red-Purple Game Technology so I can only presume he had the deadstock from their offices after they ceased development/trading in 2004. He had 1 boxed, sealed copy and 1 open copy in a jewel case so I bought them both.”

“I have the complete game files on 3 discs, but I don’t have them ripped to my PC atm so I thought I would upload the demo first.”

Thanks to Aaron for the contribution!

Images:

Videos:

  

TRON 3.0 (Climax Studios) [Cancelled – Xbox, PC]

TRON 3.0 is a cancelled sequel to TRON 2.0, which was in development by Climax Studios around 2004, planned to be published by Buena Vista Interactive for Xbox and PC. The same team already worked on Tron 2.0: Killer App for Xbox, so we can assume the project was successful enough to convince Buena Vista to hire them again for another game.

As far as we know TRON 3.0 was never officially announced, but concept art was found online by fans of the series and preserved below to remember the existence of this lost game.

If you know someone who worked on this project and could help us save more details, please let us know!

Images: 

Reprisal (Power Infused) [PC, Xbox – Cancelled]

Reprisal is a cancelled first person shooter / RPG that was in development from 2001 to 2004 by Power Infused Productions for PC and the original Xbox. The team conceived it as a hybrid between Quake, Thief and Deus Ex, featuring 3 different playable races, each one with their own gameplay mechanics, weapons and abilities. For example you would use stealth to play as humans, direct assaults to play as a cyborg, and manage resources to play as an Alien.

In august 2004 the team was searching for more developers on the CGSociety forum:

“Reprisal is the story of conflict between three races over a space station (Joshua 20) at the edge of our solar system Humans have kept their CAT battle machines stationed there in case of conflict for centuries. The invading alien army, guided by a Prince who seeks to prove himself, struck the station first, seeking to turn these weapons against their masters. The plan goes awry, causing the CATs to turn against both human and alien, and trapping all three races together in a desperate struggle for survival.”

As the game progresses, players would have taken control of the three sides and learn to use their unique powers. These races were:

  • Cyborg Assault Tanks (CATs) – Vicious and overwhelmingly powerful, these killing machines were once used to fight wars for humans. In Reprisal, they have turned against their masters and gone into a killing frenzy.
  • Humans – Weak and devoid of natural armaments, humans are the most adaptable of the three races. They are also able to squeeze into areas of the space station the others can’t access.
  • Aliens – Masters of genetic engineering, aliens are capable of altering their own bodies to suit their needs. While not as overwhelming in force as the CATs, aliens have the distinct advantage of being able to retreat from battle only to return more powerful than before.

“Playing each race requires a different skill set. For example, while CATs can charge into battle, wildly firing at everything, Humans need to sneak around conflicts, searching for a safe place to attack from.

While the game is set entirely on a space station, it has been designed to contain a large enough variety of environments to satisfy even the most hard-core gamer. During the course of the game, the player will venture through enormous mechanical devices, simulations of alien worlds, zoos filled with genetically engineered monsters, infested hallways that come alive, and even venture out onto the hull of the station itself.”

Reprisal would have offered some interesting features for its time:

  • Adaptive characters – The player will be able to adapt the look and abilities of the characters they play. In some cases, these changes will be minor and other cases will be major (replacing the lower torso with wheels).
  • Destructible weaponry and environments – Certain weapons will become available that allow the player to knock holes in some walls and destroy some weaponry (to keep it out of the “wrong hands”).
  • Body specific targeting and damage – over forty different spots on the body where the player can cause damage to the opponents.
  • Overlapping storylines – Players will encounter themselves in previous and future incarnations as they play through the scenario.

Unfortunately the team was not able to find a publisher interested in Reprisal and the project had to be canned in late 2004.

Thanks to Dan for the contribution!

Images: 

TY the Tasmanian Tiger 4: GUNYIP! [Cancelled – GameCube, Xbox, PS2]

GUNYIP! Is a cancelled dogfighting shooter set in the TY the Tasmanian Tiger universe, focused on flight missions using TY’s mecha-airplane (the Gunyip, as seen in Ty 3). It was initially conceived for GameCube, Xbox and Playstation 2 as the official 4th chapter in the TY series but gameplay would have been similar to titles such as Crimson Sky, Ace Combat and Star Fox’s all-range mode. The game was in development by Krome Studios around 2005 – 2007, started after the release of Ty the Tasmanian Tiger 3: Night of the Quinkan. While the team was pitching the idea to publishers they were hired to work on Star Wars: The Force Unleashed and GUNYIP! had to be canned.

Most of what we know about this unreleased project was revealed by Krome Studios’ artist and TY co-creator Steve Stamatiadis on his Tumblr account:

“Here’s the promo trailer we put together to pitch Gunyip to publishers. It starts with stuff from TY 3 minigames, then has some early test capture footage then ends with some rendered stuff from the TY 3 trailer.”

“There was the whole first version of TY 4: Gunyip which got shelved to make way for Star Wars. There’s a whole book just of stuff from that.”

“Flashback to the unmade TY 4: Gunyip which was Star Wars AF. The Frills were Scout Frills (the best of the bucket heads!), there were all these Star Wars style flight suits and there was even a Wookiee like character called Po (he’s a Kakapo)

If you thought the 2D game was a departure you would have hated this version even more – it was a flight combat game. Where you flew around doing missions on Gunyips. Basically Ace Combat in the TY universe. The best bit was that it was all told as a story being recounted by Lenny. Also you got to play through the “story” mode 3 times as different factions unlocked and you got more of the full story. It was ambitious to say the least.

Also I do enjoy the irony that the game was dropped mid production so that we could work on an ACTUAL Star Wars game.”

“The original TY 4 was not going to be a 3D platformer – it was a story driven air combat game in the TY universe. It was put to rest when we had the chance to make a Star Wars game and it’s probably for the best. While the game was looking pretty hot I know now that TY fans would have lost their shit because it was different. You only need to look at the reaction to the Win 8 game with it being 2D – even though everything else is pretty much exactly the same.

Anyway apart from flying around in cool transforming Gunyips the game featured a story mode that let you play through as three different factions each with their own sets of Missions. There was TY and Bushrescue, Cass and his Cold Blood Empire and finally a new group the Metalskull pirates led by Ginger Knut the flying fox.”

TY the Tasmanian Tiger: Gunyip! – The Gunyips

The gunyips are the top level of air combat machines. Each faction would have it’s own unique design that the player would control when playing their missions. They were also designed to show your pilot character flying them. This was so players could have something ‘human’ to relate to and so that they could respond to the surrounding events much the same way TY sat in the back of the Fourbie and Crabmersible.

Bush Rescue: The Woomera class Gunyip.

Design wise the BR Gunyip has elements of both the plane version from TY 3 and both the unused designs for the Jet Bunyip. It had a variable geometry that would allow it to take different forms depending on it’s flight mode. And yes it was meant as a homage to Macross’ Gerwalk mode.

Cold Blood Empire: The Raptor

This one was designed to look like a bird of prey. I used the head of Cuddles (Fluffy’s mech from TY 3). The wing “feathers” would change shape based on its speed and the tail would look nice reacting to the physics of Gunyip flight.

It’s pilot is another Thorny Devil called Lizzy. She was going to be Fluffy’s replacement for this game. When you first saw her inthe game she would appear as Fluffy but as the game progressed you’d quickly learn that it was Just Boss Cass – who was now just a little bit more unhinged – seeing her as Fluffy.

Metal Skull Pirates: The Pteropus

A flying fox flown by Ginger Knut, who is also a flying fox. This is the first pass at the Pteropus and It’s a little more basic than the others but I really liked the feel of it being a big powerful motorbike with wings.

“This is Liz, she was going to be Fluffy’s replacement in TY: Gunyip! The way it was going to work was that you’d see her in cutscenes with Cass and she’d look exactly like Fluffy. But then we’d reveal that she actually looked like this and it was just Cass who had gone a little loopy from guilt seeing her as Fluffy. “

“Here’s the look of the Frills for TY: Gunyip! They were called Scout Frills because they are meant to look like my favorite Imperial troops, the Biker Scouts. I tried a few color variations but I was going to stick with the white version.”

“Po the Kakapo – I love the idea of flightless New Zealand birds piloting stuff in the TY universe (Duke the Kiwi) so the Metalskull pirates get Po – he’s sort of Chewbacca to Ginger’s Han Solo.

Fluffy Destrofluffy – A callback to the boss from TY 1 except this time you have Harpoons and Tow Cables. I wanted to name a level the Battle of Mount Hotham – for obvious reasons.

Robot Destrofluffy – what it’s like underneath when you burn the fake fur off them.

Young Tiberius – I never quite worked out how this would fit in the game if it even could but I wanted to have a flashback element where you’d play as Tiberius the Thylacine hero in a 1920s steampunk TY world. Maybe some other time.”

In 2013 Krome released a different Ty the Tasmanian Tiger 4 on PC, but maybe the idea of a flight-combat TY game could be resurrected in the future.

Images: 

Bladeball (Cat Mother) [Xbox, PC – Cancelled]

Bladeball is a cancelled extreme sport game that was in development by Cat Mother around 2002, for PC and the original Xbox. It was inspired by the Rollerball movie and you could imagine it as a more “violent” version of soccer / football: two teams in an arena, trying to score their point by any means. The team was able to develop an early prototype, but it was not as fun to play as they imagined it to be and decided to cancel it, to work on another game (Dead Justice, which was also canned). Unfortunately only a few, tiny screenshots remain from this lost project: we tried upscaling them to have a better idea of how Bladeball could have looked like in 2002. You can find them in the gallery below.

Thanks to Piotr for the contribution!

Images: