third person shooter

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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Tank Assault (Wicked Witch) [Nintendo DS – Cancelled]

Tank Assault is a cancelled third person shooter that was in development by Wicked Witch Software, planned to be released on Nintendo DS. The game was based on their eponymous mobile app, trying to find a publisher interested in releasing it on the portable console market. The team created a playable demo using their own 3D engine, which looked quite impressive for running on the DS hardware.

Some details were published on their old website:

“The game draws on themes from the real world game titles such as Battlefield 2, Call of Duty 4, Counter-Strike or Operation Flashpoint. This demo is a range of possible games from Arcade First Person Shooter, to Combat simulation, to Squad based Real Time Strategy with local or online multiplayer features!

Many styles of gameplay will have players finding themselves fighting with or against their friends on a local connection or online in an open map or as team-mates fighting cooperatively through hordes of AI soldiers and vehicles. The multiplayer game and maps will vary from modified versions of single player maps to unique battlefields designed for warring parties.

The modern world with its trouble-spots and current conflicts gives plenty of scope to base this game off a real scenario or even to make a very compelling scenario out of imaginary countries and regions. The time period can vary as well with modern warfare games easily converted into Vietnam War, post-modern or even WW2 games.”

  • Deeply immersive 3d world and a cast of characters and scenarios to fight through.
  • Superbly rendered 3d graphics featuring detailed characters, vehicles and environments!
  • Modern warfare inspired combat, customizable classes and vehicle orientated gameplay.
  • Call in air strikes, operate UAV’s, and demolish buildings.
  • Complete missions and watch a compelling modern conflict scenario unfold.

As far as we know Wicked Witch Software never found a publisher and Tank Assault had to be canned, along with their other games for Nintendo’s portable consoles: War Monster DS and War Monster Game Boy.

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Under Pressure (Rage Software) [Cancelled – PC, Playstation]

Under Pressure is a cancelled underwater shooter adventure that was in development by Rage Software Newcastle around 1997, planned to be released on PC and the original Playstation. By looking at the few screenshots available it seems you would have been able to play in first and third person, exploring a 3D sea filled with fishes and robotic enemies.

As it happens for many other cancelled games, today not much can still be found online about Under Pressure. Screenshots were published on Edge magazine in February 1997 and a former developer mentioned the title in an interview with Arcade Attack:

Have you ever worked on any games that were never released, and if so, which unreleased games do you feel would have been the most successful?

After Power Drive Rally, I designed and helped create ‘Under Pressure’ running on PC for Rage Newcastle, an underwater submersible/action adventure game in 3D. EA were funding the game development at the time, but unfortunately they pulled the plug mere months away from release. The next game we made was the co-op space shooter Expendable, also known as Millennium Soldier on the Dreamcast/PC.”

 

Alien Front [N-Gage – Cancelled]

The original Alien Front is an arcade game developed by Sega, which was then ported to the Dreamcast in 2001, adding online multiplayer. In 2004 Sega announced another port of the game for the ill-fated Nokia N-Gage, as we can read on IGN:

“In Alien Front, you can take on the role of an army tank commander to defend the Earth against invading aliens, or switch sides and take command of a futuristic 2-leg walker, a 4-leg spider walker, or an anti-gravity hovercraft vehicle. Alien Front also has a two-player deathmatch mode via Bluetooth wireless technology and the possibility to share game statistics with the world via the N-Gage Arena.”

As many other games planned for this phone-console hybrid, Alien Front was later cancelled. In 2019 a playable prototype was found and released online.

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GunForge [Nokia N-Gage – Cancelled]

GunForge is a cancelled run ‘n gun that was in development in 2005 by TKO Software for the ill-fated Nokia N-Gage. As far as we know the game was never officially announced by the company and was soon cancelled when TKO Software was closed down by their parent company. A few GunForge sprite animations created by a former TKO employee are preserved below, to remember the existence of this lost project.

TKO were also working on another canned N-Gage game titled “Leisure Suit Larry – Pocket Party”, but part of the team later formed Method Solutions, who were able to release Call of Duty and Space Impact for Nokia’s console / cellphone hybrid.