Mech

Incursion (Argonaut Games) [PC – Cancelled]

Incursion is a cancelled squad-based action game that was in development by Argonaut Games in late ‘90, possibly planned to be released on PC. While many other lost games by Argonaut were widely known, a few ones such as Kanaan and Incursion remained forgotten for many years. Argonaut is mostly remembered today as the studio behind such classic games as Starglider, Star Fox and Croc, but between the late ‘90s and early ‘00s they fell into obscurity, until their closure in 2004.

Incursion started development after the cancellation of Kanaan, by the same team. As it happened with Kanaan there are not many details about the game, but only a few small, pre-rendered images. Players would have used a squad of robots, to fight against other robots and aliens squads in different missions.

From what we can see from these images it seems Incursion would have been a real-time action / strategy game, in which players would give commands to their robot-allies while playing as one of them in third or first person view. The team attempted a 3D cell-shaded graphic style for their game, that looked quite awesome for its time.

After Incursion was canned, part of the team left Argonaut to form Pompom games. We tried to get in contact with a few developers who worked on Incursion, but with no luck. Only a few images are preserved below, to preserve the existence of this lost Argonaut project.

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Zone of the Enders 3 (Enders Project) [Cancelled – PS3, Xbox 360]

Enders Project (also know as Zone of the Enders 3) is a cancelled game which seems to have been planned for Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 (and possibly also for PS4 & Xbox One) by Hideo Kojima and Konami. The game would have been the third chapter in the popular Zone of the Enders game series, but it was scrapped at a very early stage in development.

Zone of Enders, the series

The first Zone of the Enders is a third-person shooter / hack and slash type of video game set in 2172 where the player assumes controls of a mecha (known as Orbital Frame) called Jehuty. His mission is to free Jupiter’s colony Antilia from the military force BAHRAM. Its sequel, Zone of the Enders: The Second Runner (know in Japan as Anubis: Zone of the Ender), followed the same style but improved on many aspects, introducing more enemies, abilities and a more immersive environment. ZOE 3: Enders Project was conceived as a direct sequel to Second Runner, without taking place on futuristic colonies but rather in an “ancient civilization”.

“Unofficial announcement” of ZOE 3

The game was ‘announced’ on 25 May 2012 during a Zone of the Enders HD Collection preview event held at the Shinjuku Wald 9 theatre in Tokyo, with many Kojima Productions’s employees and ZOE developers, including Hideo Kojima himself, Yoji Shinkawa (mecha designer and illustrator for the series), Noriaki Okamura, Shuyou Murata, and Nobuyoshi Nishimura. As 4gamer reported, it was not an official announcement, rather a presentation of details about a future project for ZOE, experimenting with different concepts and models.

Quote from andriasang.com:

As detailed at Famitsu.com, Kojima indicated that the game is currently in an early prototyping phase. Producer Ryosuke Toriyama and other key staff are currently conducting tests on what can be done using the internally developed Fox Engine, explained Kojima. Toriyama took the stage and revealed that he and his staff are at the state where they’re making models (real models) and converting them into Fox Engine assets.

 

Steambot Chronicles 2 (Bumpy Trot 2) [PS3 – Cancelled]

Steambot Chronicles 2 (AKA Poncotsu Roman Daikatsugeki: Bumpy Trot 2 in Japan) is a cancelled steampunk sandbox / action mech game that was in development for the Playstation 3 by Irem, originally announced on September 2006, at the Tokyo Game Show. Steambot Chronicles 2 was officially canceled along with several other Irem games following the Japanese tsunami / earthquake in march 2011. It’s possible that Irem had already some problems with the development of Steambot Chronicles 2 and the natural disaster in Japan was just the nail in the coffin for this interesting project.

As wrote by Tollmaster on Mecha Damacy:

it seems that the original Steambot Chronicles is doomed to remain a one-off work of genius, an inexplicably deep and mold-breaking PlayStation 2 game where players finally got to see the civilian side of mecha. There was a living, breathing world outside the game’s mechanical boss battles and pitched tournaments; loading up lumber on your clunky steam-powered robot’s flatbed to help construct a bridge in-between playing the harmonica in a touring band and helping root out vast conspiracies seeking to control the world’s oil supply immersed you into something deeper than any other game has ever hoped to.

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Prowler [PSX – Cancelled]

Prowler (also know as Storm Troop and Prawler) is a cancelled sci-fi action game with mechs, that was in development at Origin Systems (the team behind the Wing Commander series) in 1994. Initially the project was meant to be released for the 3DO, as their Super Wing Commander remake, but with the failure of the console the game was soon moved to the Playstation. As we can read in an interesting article written by Sean Murphy (former Origin Systems designer) on the Wing Commander News website, the project had many problems right from the start:

Team communication was poor. Leadership was iffy. There was almost no dialog between the art staff and the programming staff. I remember one day, months into the project, sitting in a meeting and hearing the programmers drooling about how cool the game was going to be, how “dark…and gritty…and dirty, and oily and all mechanical and functional and stuff!” Clearly they had not gotten the memo about our grand notions of Neo Victorian design…

And some time later – as little as three months, possibly as long as six months – sure enough, EA pulled the plug on Prowler and let most of the team go.

You can read the full article from Sean Murphy in here. Some early concept videos from the game were preserved by the Origin Museum in 2008, and they will be shared with the community sooner or later. For now you can see some concept arts in the gallery below.

Celine was also able to find an in-game screenshot of Prowler, from TopConsoles #4 and CD Consoles #4 magazine (the same screen was in the 2 magazines). Anatoly Shashkin found even more promotional screenshots in July 2018!

Thanks to OMJoe for the contribution!

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Raze The Roof [XBOX – Cancelled]

ENG: This entry in the archive doesn’t have a description yet. If you want to add some info about the beta / cancelled stuff that you see in these images, just write a comment or send us an email! We’ll add your info in this page and your name in the contributors list. Thanks a lot for your help! :)

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