An Internet video reveals a canceled Streets of Rage game from the makers of Crackdown 2.
A king of the beat-em’ up genre, Sega’s Streets of Rage II is absolutely one of my favorite games. Its combat is simply buttery-smooth on toast and its soundtrack is just plain beat-tastic. You truly are a music god, Yuzo Koshiro.
Too bad that today the property – a truly beloved one at that – just seems to collect dust in a broom-closet over at Sega HQ, although recent evidence surprising confirms that a new take on Streets of Rage was in early development over at Ruffian Games, the producers of Crackdown 2.
Surfacing on Vimeo, a short video shows the pre-alpha footage of a Streets of Rage prototype, fully in 3D, which have been proven to be 100% real thanks to a former employee of Ruffian Games, Sean Noonan, who has gone on record stating its validity.
Noonan revealed on Twitter that during his time at the British studio – between May 2009 and July 2012 – he and a small development team in the course of only 6-to-8 weeks (holy mackerel!) created a Streets of Rage prototype for Sega, but the project was never made for unknown reasons (and don’t say, “because Sega.”)
The practice of pitching would-be games is actually a common practice in the gaming industry, although they’re never shown to the public and are quietly swept under the rug. At least, that’s the knowledge imparted to us by current Ruffian Games’ business and management chief Gary Lidden.
Lidden not only authenticated the Streets of Rage prototype’s existence after the original video was posted online, but also provided a YouTube counterpart complete with audio – the Vimeo one came with no sound at all – along with some *whispers* industry secrets *whispers* about how the project came to be.
What’s completely incredible to me about this whole story is that the team working on this project managed to pull together a competent-looking product in such a tight window if we are made to believe Sean Noonan’s words. Sure, it needs polishing up the wazoo, but considering it’s only a prototype, I’m impressed.
As for this game… well, we probably will never know why it didn’t cross the pitching stage into full development (I dare you to say “because Sega,” I dare you…), but it stands now as an oddity of gaming. A “what could have been” specimen that will be the talk amongst gaming circles from years to come.