Troubled game still under development at Human Head, insists publisher.
Prey 2, the long anticipated sequel to the hit 2006 shooter, Prey, has had a long, troubled development history, possibly second only to Duke Nukem Forever’s infamous development cycle. But Bethesda definitely doesn’t seem to have given up on the project… yet. Talking to RockPaperShotgun at QuakeCon, Bethesda’s Pete Hines was pretty forthcoming about the title.
Asked about whether Arkane Studios, the developer behind last year’s surprise hit Dishonored (also published by Bethesda), was now working on Prey 2, he said, “All of that stuff, I have no idea where it came from. The Human Head Prey 2 thing is the Human Head Prey 2 thing. Arkane is over here, and they’re doing their thing, and that’s for them to work on. We’ll be ready to talk about what they’re working on when it gets closer to release.”
So if the studios haven’t been changed, why has there been such an inexcusable delay?
“It just wasn’t where it needed to be,” Hines admitted. “It wasn’t meeting expectations that we had and – in some respects – Human Head had. We’re not just gonna proceed with a plan of putting this thing out until that gets addressed in a way that we feel like will be worth all this time and attention.”
“Yes, we could ship it and put it in a box and be done with it, but it won’t meet anybody’s expectations. Not ours, not yours, not the consumer’s. It’d just be like, ‘What happened to this?’ Well, that’s what we would like to know. It’s not fun to make a call to pull back the reins on something like that and say it’s not coming out this year. It’s certainly not an easy decision, especially after you spent years and millions and millions of dollars creating it.”
Okay, that sounds reasonable, and it’s admirable when studios and publishers stick with creative vision or financial need. But then, is this even still the same game that people got so excited about when it was initially announced?
“It probably doesn’t help me to define that any further. The reason that it got delayed the way it did is because it was not hitting the quality bar that it was supposed to and needed to. That was ultimately the problem. It had nothing to do with what it was trying to do. It just didn’t hit the quality bar. It’s kind of like Wolfenstein, which is getting delayed to next year because it’s showing promise, but it needs more time and polish to hit the quality bar we expect. Prey 2 is not the first time that we’ve moved something because of that. It’s gonna come down to quality.”
Okay, that doesn’t clear anything up, and is actually a little evasive (which might be worrying- the last thing we want is Prey: Call of Duty Edition), but at least he seems to be adamant that the game needs to meet a certain standard of quality.