We're not video game developers here or anything, but we think RPG games would be very difficult to make. They're expansive, the gameplay is intricate and complex, and the worlds are often highly interactive and liable to change. It's no surprise, then, that so many RPGs have been cancelled over the years. Whether through creative differences or budget constraints, dozens of RPGs have failed to see the light of day. And it's a shame, because some of them sounded really, really fun.
These are ten cancelled RPGs you never knew existed.
10 Baldur's Gate III: The Black Hound
The Baldur's Gate series was a relatively popular RPG franchise that has seen sporadic releases since the late 90s. Baldur's Gate III: The Black Hound was originally announced way back in 2002 and was planned to be the first in a new trilogy of games. Unfortunately, business got in the way. When the game was roughly 80% completed, publisher Interplay Entertainment lost the rights to publish Baldur's Gate titles on the PC. In exchange, they extended their console contract with the Baldur's Gate series. No contract means no publishing rights, which means we've never seen The Black Hound.
9 Dungeon Hero
First off, let us just say that Dungeon Hero sounds like the most stereotypical and cliché name for an RPG in existence! It was being developed by Firefly Studios, the same team behind the Stronghold series. It was going to be a strategic hack and slash RPG, and you were going to play as a mercenary hired by a society of goblins to protect their city from invaders. The game's original publisher was Gamecock Media Group, but this company was bought out by SouthPeak Games in 2008, who decided not to publish the game for whatever reason.
8 Warrior's Lair
In the next exercise of silly and lazy names, we have Warriors Lair! Being developed for the PlayStation 3 and Vita by Idol Minds and SCE San Diego, Warrior's Lair was going to be a traditional Medieval-set RPG. The game was coming along swimmingly and was even presented at E3 2011, where it demonstrated the ability to switch games between the PS3 and Vita via cloud storage. Unfortunately, the game quickly entered into development hell, and many questions were raised regarding its status. In 2013, the game was officially cancelled for unknown reasons.
7 Black Isle's Torn
Black Isle's Torn was an RPG being developed by Black Isle Studios, the exact same team behind the cancelled Baldur's Gate III. This development team had some REALLY nasty luck when it came to having their games published. This game was going to use a modified form of the Fallout engine and it was going to feature a heavy emphasis on magic. The game was highly anticipated thanks to the developers' reputation and the use of the Fallout system, and the game even showed up at E3 2001. Unfortunately, it was cancelled that same year because "it was not going to be done in time to get [publisher] Interplay the revenue the company needed to continue operations."
6 Sister Sonic
Back in December of 1991, a platforming action RPG called Popful Mail: Magical Fantasy Adventure was released in Japan. Sensing success, Sega planned to localize the Japanese game for Western markets, but also wanted to replace the game's characters with the Sonic cast. The result was Sister Sonic, a game that would introduce Sonic's long lost sister. Sega announced the game as a Sonic RPG but failed to mention that it would be a reworking of Popful Mail.
When fans of the game discovered this fact, they protested and demanded that Sega simply localize the game in its original state. In response, Sega cancelled Sister Sonic.
5 The Ripper
To be honest, we're not entirely sure about the morality behind this game. The Ripper was going to have you assume the role of infamous English serial killer Jack the Ripper. However, instead of adhering to history and having Jack kill destitute women, he was going to battle demons in the streets of London. Better, but it's still a little weird to be playing as Jack the Ripper, though. It was being developed by Visceral Games, and various pieces of artwork were released to gaming magazines before it was officially cancelled in 2009.
4 Alliance: The Silent War
Alliance: The Silent War sounds like an amazing game. It was going to be a mix of first-person shooter and tactical RPG elements, and it was going to take the player through ninety years of combat history, from World War I to the present day. The game was also going to contain over 200 real weapons that you could learn about and experiment with. Unfortunately, developer Windward Mark began work on Second Life and left Alliance behind. Luckily, it was announced that the game was back in development, but that was back in 2011, so we'll just have to wait and see what happens.
3 Chronos Materia
Chronos Materia was being developed by Gust Co. Ltd., and it was going to serve as a unique combination of their Atelier and Ar Nosurge games. It was also going to employ a significant time travel element, allowing players to go back in time and change past decisions to alter the course of the present timeline. It was announced back in June of 2013 and was going to be a Vita exclusive, and that same year various screenshots were released. However, it was delayed without reason, and no one heard anything about it for years. Unfortunately, Famitsu officially announced its cancellation in 2016.
2 Shadow Realms
Shadow Realms is a game we really wish wasn't cancelled. It was being developed by BioWare Austin and first announced at the 2014 Comic Con. Players would choose one of six classes to play as, and the story took place both on modern day Earth and a unique parallel world called Embra. It was also going to be released through episodes like Telltale, and it was going to employ the traditional BioWare mechanic of having your choices greatly affect the story. Unfortunately, the game was cancelled in 2015 so BioWare could focus on Mass Effect: Andromeda and Dragon Age: Inquisition.
It's not like video games getting cancelled is a modern thing. Following 1988's Wasteland, Interplay (again) wanted to publish a follow-up, and Meantime was put into development for the Apple II. The game was deep into development when a couple of detrimental things occurred. For one, key player Liz Danforth left the team. For another, the team realized that the Apple II was declining in relevance and sales. The team attempted to port the progress over to the MS-DOS, but lead Bill Dugan lost morale upon seeing the incredible graphics of Ultima VII. Knowing that his product was vastly inferior and out-of-date, he decided to cancel the project for good.