factor 5

Thornado [N64 – Prototype]


Also know as “Turrican 64”, Thornado was an action game / third person shooter that was in development at Factor 5 as a spiritual successor to the Turrican series, but with some inspiration from Metroid. This project was originally announced for the Nintendo 64, but it seems that only an early prototype / tech demo was created before it was put on hold, probably because Factor 5 was too busy to work on Star Wars: Rogue Squadron.

Originally they wanted to call the game “Turrican 64” but they could not settle on an agreement with the rights owner of the “Turrican” franchise, Rainbow Arts / Softgold. Eggebrecht said that it was internally referred to as “Thornado”, a mixture of “Thor” and “Tornado”.

The game would had featured eight levels with shooting and puzzles elements. Additionally, the game had two protagonists, a male and a female  The music would have been done by Chris Huelsbeck again and a sample is still available to download from the official F5 website.

As we can see from the few screens below, F5 realized a nice Target Render for Thornado 64, that was used to show how the game would have looked on the Nintendo console. The scene shows a scenario from the end of time, in which you had to jump over cars, shots to enemies and then fight an huge final boss. That’s only a tech demo though and probably they never created a playable one.

After some time and many delays, Thornado was cancelled for the N64 and Factor 5 tried to move it to the new “Dolphin” hardware (later know as the GameCube). As we know, even Thornado GameCube was cancelled and after so many years the project vanished forever from the gaming world.

Thanks a lot to Celine for the contribution!


Superman (Factor 5) [X360/PS3 – Cancelled]


‘Superman: Man of Steel’ was the last known working title of an open world action game Factor 5 were working on for Brash Entertainment, which was being based around the legendary DC comics superhero license, Superman. It was planned to be made for the PS3, Xbox 360, and Nintendo Wii. Its initial codename was ‘Blue Steel’.

Internal concept video:




Lair Engine [Wii – Tech Demo]

Lair is a PS3 action / flying game developed by Factor 5 in which the player controls a knight named Rohn who rides a dragon. The original Lair 3D engine was downgraded to make it run on the Wii hardware, to develope new games for the Nintendo console. This Lair Engine for the Wii could have been used as a basic engine for the prototype of Kid Icarus Wii, a  project that Factor 5 tried to propose to Nintendo.



Thornado [GameCube – Cancelled]


Announced shortly after the release of the Nintendo 64, with the more familiar name of “Turrican 64“, Thornado was meant to be the first 3D game in the Turrican series, but with a different name because of some copyright problems. From the first N64 concept, which development was confirmed several times by Factor 5 in different interviews, there are not many informations, apart from the rumor that it was  going to be even more inspired by the exploration-structure of Metroid. Like several other N64 titles, Thornado 64 was soon cancelled and its development  started again for the new Nintendo console, at the time still known as the”Project  Dolphin“.

At the Space World 2000 Thornado was finally presented in a real time demo-video at closed doors for few gaming journalists. In that video, the hero of the game was trying to escape from an explosion, running on a huge bridge while the cars and the street itself were flying in the air. Unfortunately this video was never released and neither has any screenshots from the game: only some concept arts were saved to preserve the existence of this cancelled project.

Few details on the game are available: as announced for the 64-bit version, Thornado should have been inspired by Metroid, combining  a third person shooter action with exploration, two playable characters (a man and a woman), the return of  the “hookshoot” and futuristic setting from the classic Turrican. As noted by Ross Sillifant, Thornado WAS planned to be a GameCube LAUNCH title after N64 version was cancelled, see ‘whatever happened to Turrican?’ Arcade Mags Timewarp July 1998 feature.

Is still unknown why Thornado was never released, but maybe the various Star Wars projects that Factor 5 developed for the GameCube were one of the reasons. F5 were too busy to work on those profitable Star Wars games, to think about finishing Thornado.

An interesting note: in a level of Star Wars: Rogue Squadron 3 (Defenders of Ralltiir) for the GameCube, Factor 5 have added a small tribute to Thornado. Infact the great bridge in this mission is the same bridge that was modeled for the Thornado Tech Demo! Below  you can see some screenshots of the Ralltiir bridge, so we can have a vague idea about the Space World 2000 Thornado video.

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