While Platinum Games' Xbox One and WIndows 10-exclusive action-RPG Scalebound was announced over two years earlier than their other upcoming RPG NieR: Automata, in recent times it seems that we've been hearing about the latter a lot more than the former. That trend looks like it's going to continue, for Scalebound has been cancelled.
Microsoft Studios made the official announcement on Twitter, saying that they had come to the decision to "end production" on the game after "careful deliberation". A reason wasn't given, and in their statement to Windows Central they quickly went on to mention the rest of their 2017 line-up such as Halo Wars 2, Crackdown 3 and State of Decay 2. While those titles do look promising and noteworthy, the RPG hole left by the Scalebound is still noticeable, especially with PS4 (and PC) players still having NieR: Automata to look forward to. So Xbox One players are currently bereft of not just a major RPG that's exclusive to their platform but a Platinum Games-developed title as well. Looks like the PS4 has scored an early point.
It seems that the road that led to Scalebound's cancellation might have started since last Autumn. According to Eurogamer's sources, pressure from all the workload caused several senior developers to take a month off from the project. They returned, but the game was inevitably behind schedule and also suffered from engine issues and missed deadlines, leading to the decision to put and end to the project.
I'll admit that for all its dragons, nice-looking production values and co-op feature, Scalebound never really stole my attention, and NieR: Automata was easily the more compelling-looking title for me. Still, it's a shame that Platinum Games' work had to come to such an end.
Scalebound was first revealed via a cinematic trailer at E3 2014, though its conception had started years before that. The 2015 Gamescom trailer showed the protagonist and his dragon battling soldiers that wouldn't look out of place in a Final Fantasy game, later taking on a colossal beast. But the sizes of both the dragon and the other creature combined paled in comparison to the massive boss that was fought in the last year's co-op gameplay video. Whatever the game lacked, it definitely wasn't a sense of epic scale or ambition. The gameplay videos are below, if you wish to watch them.