Beowulf Game From Beowulf Movie Kills Beowulf Game
German developer 4HEAD Studios has ceased work on its independently-developed title Beowulf, citing pressure from the new Paramount blockbuster of the same name.
4HEAD's effort, in collaboration with animation and graphics studio 3D-IO, was first announced in early 2006 as an action-RPG title based on the ancient epic poem, intended for release on PC and next-generation consoles. However, at the time of the announcement, the studio had not yet found a publisher for the title, and the advent of the Beowulf movie left almost no interest in the non-movie version among publishers.
"With the announcement of Ubisoft's official game based on the movie and the conceivable competitive situation, we were seeing publishers unwilling to support our game. We thus lacked the resources needed to drive our project's development forward," said 4HEAD Executive Producer Gustaf Stechmann.
Movie studio Paramount has already obtained the rights to the project, including trademarks, internet domains and other assets, and 4HEAD Studios has since been acquired by German publisher DTP. "Luckily, we had the older rights to the use of the name," Stechmann continued. "The buy-out deal with Paramount was therefore the logical exit strategy."
Beowulf: The Movie and Beowulf: The Videogame are set for release on November 16.
I read the press release for this earlier this morning. I think it's one of the saddest stories in the industry, to be honest, as I remember the game announcement long before the announcement for the film. I actually believe the game was originally targeted for the original Xbox. To begin production on the game before the film was even in production, and then to be forced to cancel like that...it's honestly pretty damn unfair. The least that could've been done is made Ubisoft's version "Beowulf: The Game of the Movie" or something, even if it is corny.
I hope that the developer at least keeps the engine and work they've managed and just put it towards a new, original IP instead of all of that time and money being wasted.
I guess thats why you need funding up front in games development... Shame.
I'm a little disheartened by this latest example of the little guy being steamrollered by the Massive American Corporation, but the developers have to eat most of the blame for going into the deal without a publisher. Game development is risky enough under the best of circumstances, so adding extra layers of complication is just asking for trouble.