Atsushi Inaba, head of Platinum Games, recently said how it made him sad to see Microsoft catch all the flak for the cancellation of Scalebound, the studio's dragonesque action-RPG, insisting both sides failed in what they set out to do.
Announced back in 2014, Scalebound had its first public showing at Gamescom in 2015, but the launch was delayed to 2017, only to be cancelled in January 2017.
"Watching fans getting angry at Microsoft over the cancellation wasn't easy for us to watch. Because the reality is, when any game in development can't get released it's because both sides failed", Inaba said.
Inaba understands that fans are disappointed, but feels as if they're trying to find a single bad guy, when the reality is that a failed group effort.
"I think there are areas where we could’ve done better and I'm sure there are areas that Microsoft as a publishing partner wish that they could've done better. Because nobody wants a game to be cancelled", he added.
Nevertheless, as painful as Scalebound development was, Inaba thinks that the studio still benefited from the hard lessons. "We obviously can't go into details about it, because there are rules of engagement as a developer", he said.
Ultimately, Inaba insists that the studio and himself had plenty of titles cancelled, which is pretty normal in the business, so it's not like it's the end of the world.
"The truth is, we don't like to see Microsoft take the brunt of the fan ire because game development is hard and both sides learned lessons, for sure", he said.
There were some rumours about Scalebound coming to the Switch instead, but considering that Microsoft is the IP holder, it's highly unlikely that this will be the case.
It is interesting, though, how fans in their wish to centralise their hate often miss completely, and you don't need to look further than Anthem. Fans were so over big bad EA, that they completely overlooked that this is not the same BioWare.