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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!

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Sin 2: Reborn (Ritual Entertainment) [Cancelled – PC]

Sin 2 (AKA Sin Reborn) is the cancelled sequel to Ritual Entertainment’s 1998 FPS, which was pitched around 2003. The team created an early prototype demo using the Doom 3 engine, but they did not find a publisher interested in funding the project. From the available footage it seems the game’s antagonist wanted to mutate every human in the city, you could use the physic engine to destroy the environment and block / damage enemies, and you could drive around in vehicles.

Some details were also published on the old Ritual Entertainment’s website:

“In Summer 2003, Ritual Entertainment created a publisher demo for Sin II in order to find funding for the project. Using next generation technology, Sin II was to be a full blown follow-up to Ritual’s 1998 action hit Sin. Unfortunately, no publisher had serious interest in backing the title, forcing Ritual to abandon the idea for the time being.

While the game is not currently in development, we are able to bring you two exclusive in-game screenshots from Ritual’s demo. Taken in a black test map, the screenshots show the new models for main character John R. Blade and villainess Elexis Sinclaire.

So why doesn’t Ritual just release the demo? The demo was created using an in-development third party technology. Until this technology is completed and officially available for licensing, Ritual cannot release any more media from the demo, or even disclose what technology was used.”

In the end Ritual Entertainment chose to work on an Episodic series of Sin games, and the original Sin 2 was finally canned. Unfortunately even Sin Episodes did not have much luck: of the 9 planned episodes only the first one was published before the company was acquired by MumboJumbo.

Thanks to Piotr for the contribution!

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Lada Racing Club 2 [PC – Cancelled]

Lada Racing Club 2 is a cancelled racing game that was in development by Geleos Media, planned to be released on PC. The first Lada Racing Club was quite hyped before its release: the team promised full tuning from russian AvtoVaz company, being able to build the car of your dreams from real existing parts, impressive graphics and physics. Players would have been able to drive around a super realistic Moscow, so detailed that if you live in the city you could even drive to your real-life home.

Unfortunately when the game was released in 2006 players were not happy: Lada Racing Club had a ton of bugs, poor AI, boring tracks, weak customization, and it could be completed in just 3 hours. After receiving criticisms Geleos Media promised to improve everything in Lada Racing Club 2, but players heavily boycotted the project and the team couldn’t raise enough money to fully work on the sequel.

Thanks to Josef for the contribution!

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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!

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END (Faramix Enterprises) [Cancelled – Xbox 360, PC]

END is a cancelled FPS / RPG / MMO / Action Adventure hybrid that was in development by Faramix Enterprises around 2007, planned to be released on Xbox 360 and PC. The concept was quite ambitious and the team wanted to renovate the FPS genre in gameplay and immersion.

Some details about END were available on their old website:

“Not only is “End” a hand to hand combat adventure, but weapons are widely available for use based on the wants of the player. Many moves are available to stay in stealth, including but not limited to – picking locks, stealing, or interrogating others for information. The control is left in the player! Do you sneak through the level or alert everyone you are there and run and gun? Do you interrogate and knock them out or kill in rage? The control is in your hands and your fate will change based on your actions.”

We can also find an article written by former Faramix Enterprises founder Michael Dehen, sharing his memories working on the project:

“I’m the creator of the storyline and gameplay for End. I designed and wrote the backbone that it was built on top of. This is my dream and my life, and now I share my dream with others on the team, and it has become our game.

We made the mistake of submitting our company and game title for review too early. We spent a hard three months after our first publisher encounter fleshing out more ideas, developing more artwork and most importantly, finishing the demo, before even thinking about approaching other publishers.”

Dehen also had an interview with Gamasutra in 2007:

“The FPS genre is boring and new ideas need to be incorporated. Most of the new FPS video games being released or scheduled to be released follow the same basics, which were cool at first but are beginning to get stagnant. Companies today are scared to try something new and unproven, because it could bring a loss in revenue.

“The different designs and ideas we have incorporated into our video game title END will bring a new front to the FPS genre by including other aspects from RPGs, MMOs, and Action/Adventure games, creating a kind of hybrid. We didn’t start designing the gameplay for END until many aspects of the storyline were near completion. The type of game play we chose helped drive the storyline and immerse the future video game players.”

“We recently finished our technical demo to show off game play and our abilities at designing, and are moving into the Unreal Engine 3 to being smaller demos of what we can visually produce as we having already begun talking to many publishers around the world.”

Unfortunately it seems Faramix Enterprises were not able to find a publisher or funds to keep working on END and the game vanished along with the company a few years later. Only some concept art is currently preserved for this lost game.

Thanks to Dan for the contribution!

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