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Bethesda Says Prey 2 Isn't Canceled, Also Isn't Coming Out This Year

Publisher cites quality issues as the reason for delay, and is frankly pretty mean about it.

No Blade Runner-esque space bounty hunting for you! For a while, at least.
No Blade Runner-esque space bounty hunting for you! For a while, at least.

Rumors had been churning a couple of weeks back that Prey 2, the Human Head-developed sci-fi bounty hunting game that more or less shocked everyone by being a game called Prey 2 that looked legitimately awesome, had been quietly canceled. The rumor mill had been churning even earlier than that, as multiple Prey 2-related presentations, including one at this year's GDC, had been canceled very much at the last minute with no explanation.

Well, we can put the rumors to rest today, as Bethesda has announced in no uncertain terms that development of Prey 2 is still very much ongoing. However, the game will not meet its original 2012 release date, either.

Here is Bethesda's entire statement on the subject.

Development of Prey 2 has not been cancelled but the game will not be released in 2012 as planned. The delay is due to the fact that game development has not progressed satisfactorily this past year, and the game does not currently meet our quality standards. Prey 2 has shown great promise and we regret disappointing our fans. We have made a substantial investment in game development to deliver the experience fans want. We are determined only to release the AAA game that fans rightfully expect, and are unwilling to compromise our quality standards to meet a release schedule.

Yikes. Am I the only one reading a little bit of pointed hostility in that statement? Not trying to start any mess, but it's exceedingly rare for a publisher to make definitive quality statements regarding a project still in the works. And even when they do, they're usually qualified by a lot of flowery, supportive language, with phrases like "we're very excited about the potential ____ has to offer" or "we believe this extra development time will help make ____ into the best in class blah blah blah." Frankly, this is as close as I've seen to a publisher publicly reading a developer the riot act in, well, ever.

Whatever the case, Human Head Studios is presumably still hard at work on Prey 2 for the foreseeable future (I'm only guessing, since the release doesn't mention a shift in development duties), and Bethesda still plans to make good on its "substantial investment." Maybe there's nothing to worry about right now. However, if we start reading about a sudden influx of Human Head employees suffering brutal kneecap injuries--after all, you don't need knees to write code--maybe we should start worrying again.

Alex Navarro on Google+
162 CommentsRefresh
Avatar image for piggsy1992
Posted By piggsy1992

Never played the original, but this one has got my attention.

Avatar image for yukoasho
Posted By yukoasho
Avatar image for roger778
Posted By Roger778

Prey 2 was one of my most anticipated games this year. I saw the E3 Demo last year, and I thought it looked like a very ambitious and exciting shooter game.

I guess I should be thankful that the game hasn't been cancelled, just delayed to next year.

Avatar image for andy_117
Posted By Andy_117

@jakkblades said:

Did you play it?

I did indeed play it. I picked it up for a paltry $50 alongside every other id game ever made in the recent Steam Christmas sale. And I still feel slightly ripped off. The PC version, despite being mostly working now, still lacks anything resembling a proper graphics settings screen, and still suffers from horrendous pop-in on ATi cards, even with the latest patches and drivers. The game itself was merely average. The animation was impressive, but suffered from uncanny valley-ness due to the fact that all of the major quest-giving NPCs seemed to be nailed to the goddamn floor. That took me way out of it.

At the end of the day, it just didn't have the quality or run-and-gun-fun I'd expect from an id game. They obviously tried as hard as they could to bring their expertise to a "modern" shooter, but it ended up being a slightly frustrating mess of old and new sensibilities instead. Really, player speed increased a bit, enemies given less health, you'd have a great id shooter. As it stands, its a slow-paced shooter with the level design of a fast-paced shooter. Also, I will not forgive the game for expecting me to quicksave in absence of a proper auto-save system. ...I don't like killing a boss, only to be blindsided by a grunt's shotgun shell and then being reverted to my last save at the beginning of the entire level. That's just... that's just silly.

Yeah, I'd say it deserves the ire it gets. Mostly. It was actually a competent shooter, it just didn't live up to the hype. I guess you could say... it made people... rage.


Avatar image for gaistheidegger
Posted By GaistHeidegger

Got to agree that it's just bizarre to even keep this in with the Prey franchise. Better sales, but ehh, Prey wasn't spectacular.

Avatar image for senorfuzzeh
Posted By senorfuzzeh

I am really glad this game isn't cancelled. Back when I made my top games I was excited for this year Prey 2 was like number 5.

Hopefully it'll be better now than even before!

Avatar image for mewarmo990
Posted By mewarmo990

What's so mean about it?

"The game isn't done, so we're delaying it until it's better."

Avatar image for blueinferno
Posted By blueinferno

Good. No need to rush it. Lots of other games coming out in the mean time.

Avatar image for dan_citi
Posted By Dan_CiTi

Hopefully they have recognized the potential they have on their hands and they now want to make this game to its fullest potential.

Avatar image for quint
Posted By Quint

Good news! This one of the few original looking shooters on the horizon.