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Looks like Microsoft just lost another exclusive. In a year when the Xbox One is already hurting for exclusives, it has suddenly been confirmed that Scalebound, the game by Bayonetta developers Platinum Games, has been cancelled, making this another big blow to Microsoft’s Xbox One lineup.
In a statement to IGN, Microsoft said of Scalebound‘s cancellation, “After careful deliberation, Microsoft Studios has come to the decision to end production for Scalebound.” Rumors started to spread about Scalebound‘s impending demise when Kotaku reported yesterday that the game was in trouble, citing several sources. The news is a huge blow to Xbox One, since Platinum Games was developing Scalebound for the Xbox as well as PC and would’ve been a much needed exclusive for the platform. Microsoft seemed to elude the issue of exclusives in its statement, saying:
We’re working hard to deliver an amazing lineup of games to our fans this year, including Halo Wars 2, Crackdown 3, State of Decay 2, Sea of Thieves and other great experiences.
Its safe to say Microsoft might be sensitive to that line of criticism.
While the announcement does come as a surprise, the signs were already pointing towards disaster for Scalebound. Microsoft has removed the game’s official page from the Xbox website sometime earlier. There was also no mention of the game in an Xbox Wire post about the future of the Xbox One.
Still, gamers have been looking forward to Scalebound for years now, even as it languished in development hell. It was first announced in an Xbox E3 press conference way back in 2014 and subsequently made many “Most Anticipated” lists in the following years. It was also the first action RPG by Platinum Games, famous for games like Bayonetta. The game was being directed by Hideki Kamiya, who also directed Bayonetta, and it was reportedly a pet project of his since Platinum was founded in 2006. Kamiya said he wanted to develop a game in which dragons were depicted not as an enemy, but as a companion. He went on to IGN and said, “I’ve always wanted to create a game where the dragons were the main subject matter.”
From what was seen in clips, the open world RPG looked like a cross between The Last Guardian and Monster Hunter. Like in Monster Hunter, players would use a variety of weapons to take on giant boss monsters. Players could also issue commands to their pet dragon to assist in battle, which would have been really fun. Unfortunately, Scalebound had been in development limbo for a while. There hadn’t been much news from the game since June of last year when Platinum showed off co-op footage during E3. That footage turned heads when it featured a massive boss battle against a giant enemy crab. Unfortunately, none of those massive boss fights and giant dragon buddies will ever see the light of day again.