Scalebound Cancellation Detailed in New Interview


In January 2017, some unfortunate news came to light: one of the most anticipated Xbox One titles had been officially canceled. Scalebound was ambitious, and damningly so. Players would be able to control a pet dragon named Thuban, using weapons to defeat enemies while also giving commands to the friendly beast. PlatinumGames intended the title to be more RPG and graphic-heavy, in lieu of their usual action titles. Initially, the word was that development had simply fallen too far behind. Now, PlatinumGames developer Hideki Kamiya is speaking out in a new YouTube interview series about the unfortunate fate of the Scalebound project.

Almost five years after the project was initially canceled, Kamiya is taking some personal responsibility for Scalebound‘s failure to launch. He also mentions the technical difficulties the team had when tackling such an ambitious project.

Scalebound was a project we had teamed up on with Microsoft. They expected good things from us, and we needed to live up to those expectations with the project. While it was a personal wish of mine, I thought it was also a necessary mission for PlatinumGames to improve our graphical ability and get to the next step of modern game creation. I loved fantasy worlds since I was a child. I’ve always enjoyed worlds with swords, magic, and dragons. I always wanted to make something around that theme. This is how I thought of a world revolving around a young man fighting together with a dragon. However, it was a big challenge for PlatinumGames.

We were working in an environment we weren’t used to. We were developing on the Unreal engine, we also lacked the necessary know-how to build a game based on online features. The hurdles we had to overcome were very big. We weren’t experienced enough and couldn’t get over that wall, leading to what happened in the end.

I’m sorry to the players who looked forward to it, and moreover I’m sorry to Microsoft who had placed their trust in us as a business partner. I want to apologize both as a creator and as a member of PlatinumGames.”

In 2020, Phil Spencer confirmed that the game was completely dead. Stranger things have happened, however, and maybe fans can persuade Platinum to pick up the pen again. Given how much the industry and technology have changed since Scalebound‘s original development period, it might be worth another try.