Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines II

I’ll probably cancel my preorder on GoG. Such a disappointing development.

I am very, very concerned that you are going to be exactly right, and that pains me.

There have been very few games I WANTED a sequel to more than the original Bloodlines game. And the idea of it being a complete disaster…it breaks my heart.

In a message from the Discord server, Paradox announced that Hardsuit Labs is out and the game’s not releasing in 2021 anymore. It must be in quite a state.

Good morning, everyone

As you have noticed, we’ve been keeping pretty quiet for a while. With this in mind, the first piece of news we have for you is to confirm that Bloodlines 2 is still in development.

Secondly, we have made the hard decision that Hardsuit Labs will no longer be leading the development of Bloodlines 2 - which also means that we will not be releasing in 2021 as previously planned. Since we cannot at this time communicate a new release date, we’ve also decided to stop accepting pre-orders for the time being.

This game is very important to us and it has been an ambitious project from the very start. In order to meet our goals for it, we’ve come to the conclusion that a change is needed and, as a result, more development time is required.

We’d like to take this opportunity to honor Hardsuit Labs for their efforts and thank them for their hard work on the project. The studio has done a tremendous job in laying the foundations for the game and we hope that you, the community, will also appreciate their contribution to Bloodlines 2.

We’re thankful for your continuous support throughout the game’s development. We understand how important this is to you, and we’d love to share more with you. As soon as we can, we’ll let you know what the future development team of Bloodlines 2 will look like.

Guys, I’m starting to think this one isn’t going to pan out.

So presumably, despite what appear to be significant time and effort in development, the game is in such a mess that a new dev is needed? Or perhaps the game is just dead, Jim?

How does something like this happen? In theory Paradox is a sizable operation which should be monitoring development. How does something like this go so awry? And why has it taken so long to realize all this?

This Paradox dude has a good sense of humor:

At least they canceled pre-orders and they’re not trying to milk the public via kickstarter like SC.

Paradox has its fair share of disastrous third-party releases. They are (reasonably) good at managing their own (PDS) releases. Third-parties… not so much. Not sure why, though.

Yeah, this game has definitely moved into the “Wait and see” category. I am expecting a broken mess at release with an overall narrative full of contradictions and otherwise a complete mess.

I don’t think I’ve ever heard of a game being taken away from a developer completely, to be handed over to a different one by the publisher.

Didn’t the FF7 Remake swap devs midstream?

While there have been warning signs for quite a while now, I would not be surprised if the whole pandemic thing and remote collaboration issues contributed to this fiasco.

Maybe Duke Nukem Forever counts on this one.

I’m sure I’ve heard of other cases, but I can’t recall any of them right now. :(

Rollercoaster Tycoon World changed developers not once but twice after being announced by Atari, and we all know how that turned out so not the greatest of precedents. That’s the only I have any recollection of so far, I feel like there have been other such instances though.

Happened multiple times with Starcraft Ghost before the project was just scrapped.

The Guild 3 - still in early access - has been through at least two developers so far.

Oh good point. And it’s not…in terrible condition. I really, REALLY liked The Guild 2, and while 3 certainly doesn’t have the same magic, it’s playable, and it’s not bad. I’ve put a decent number of hours into it.

I mean it really all depends on where things were, right? They lost the lead writer awhile back, so if core systems are in place and they are mainly lacking in narrative, it might not be a complete disaster.

On the other hand, it could be a miserable mess of a failure, and that would make me very sad.

Yeah, this isn’t a new thing. Publishers have yanked games away from devs and tasked another studio to either finish or restart development before.

I will say that I’m having a hard time thinking of an instance when that happened and the finished product actually turned out better than mediocre. Maybe Prey? Although that was a completely dead license that was just pasted onto a game Arkane was already developing.

Dead Island 2 was pulled from Yager.