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Vaporware
aka: Vapourware

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Pearl: Did you hear? Ancho-V just delayed their new game until next year...
Marina: Wasn't it supposed to come out, like, four years ago?

Computer or video game software or hardware with revolutionary or next-generation capabilities that is continuously hyped to the public, but doesn't seem to be coming any closer to store shelves. Note that long development cycles do not, by themselves, qualify a product as Vaporware; the game must be repeatedly postponed and put off, all the while being promoted as "Coming soon!"

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Sometimes this is intentional, done by various promoters and stockholders solely to drive up the company's share prices, lure in new investors, or create a buzz in the marketplace that will keep their name on top. In the most extreme cases, the developing company itself may be a total fraud. That said, the vast majority of vaporware isn't malicious. Most of the time there is legitimate product being produced, but internal problems simply result in it falling behind schedule and being passed in the marketplace by competitors. The developers simply promised more than their programmers could possibly deliver in too short a time frame.

Often, when a big goal is for the product to be up with the current technology, it becomes a self-reinforcing feedback loop of sorts when work has to be scrapped to keep up with the times. Combine this with people leaving the project out of frustration with the lack of forward progress and it gets harder to finish with every delay. More than a few games have also fallen victim to runaway ego and perfectionism, where the designers get distracted by their own artistic visions or desire to create something revolutionary and genre-shattering and won't be satisfied until it's "perfect", cost, publishers, and release dates be damned! (With predictable results).

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Compare Development Hell and What Could Have Been. Contrast Dead Fic and Orphaned Series, which actually manage to release more than a teaser (thanks to serialization) before eventually being abandoned incomplete. See also Saved from Development Hell for a few who managed to get completed. See also the Canceled Video Games index for pages about games that have been officially canceled by their creators.

IMPORTANT! If a work was ever released—if it was ever available for purchase—then it was Saved from Development Hell, not this trope, and such examples should go there (or be moved there upon release).

Should not be confused with Vapor Wear, Vaporwave, or so on. Also, perhaps ironically, no relation to Steam.


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Examples

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    Video Game Titles: #-B 
  • 32 Extreme was an in-house Sega game for the 32X. It was described as a 32X version of California Games but was cancelled due to add-on's early demise.
  • Ace Combat:
    • In May 1996, Namco announced PC ports of three of their arcade titles, including Air Combat 22. Save for the concurrent Rave Racer port making the rounds at some industry trade shows and getting a preview in EDGE's July issue of that year, nothing came of this.
    • Project Aces was working around 2003 on using the Ace Combat 04 engine for a remake of Xevious for that game's 20th anniversary, though little progress was made beyond a tech demo of, basically, putting the Solvalou into Ace Combat 04 before the project was quickly shelved in favor of the team working on Ace Combat 5.
    • A 2007 issue of Famitsu had an article centered on a trio of cancelled games, developed jointly by Project Aces and Cellius (a company owned by both Namco and Sony), which would have been set in the Ace Combat universe: Brave Arms, Second Season 01, and Chain Limit. Little is known about any of them, other than that Brave Arms was to be a 3D beat-em-up set in the Kingdom of Sapin in 2025.
  • Agent by Rockstar. Revealed at E3 2009 as a PlayStation 3 exclusive title, and has been MIA since. Rockstar renewed copyright prior to New Year's 2017, but allowed it to lapse in November 2018. In late August of 2017, there was a supposed leak of new concept art alongside the long rumored Bully sequel having art released; Rockstar and Take 2 have not spoken on if this is real as of February 2020. Despite its uncertain fate, however, it is still listed on the Rockstar Games website.
  • Alien
    • Aliens Interactive was going to be an interactive comic book game for the CD-i featuring a story by Dark Horse Comics, developed around 1991-1993, with a Predator followup planned.
    • The Alien vs. Predator arcade game was planned to have a 1995 port for the Sega 32X.
    • Alien vs Predator was going to be a 1994 FPS for the Atari Lynx, and was canceled in favor of publishing an Alien vs Predator game on the Jaguar.
    • Aliens Online was a 1998 multiplayer FPS that never left beta when the servers were shut down by EA.
    • Aliens vs. Predator was going to be a 2004 Game Boy Advance game published by Ubisoft, based on the 2004 movie.
    • Aliens: Colonial Marines was going to be a 2002 game for the PlayStation 2, unrelated to the game released in 2013.
    • Aliens: Crucible was an Alien RPG developed by Obsidian Entertainment. The game was cancelled in 2010 when the publisher, Sega, preferred the release of Aliens: Colonial Marines.
  • Allison Road, the Spiritual Successor to Silent Hills (itself an example, see below), was announced in 2015, then in 2016 its official Twitter account announced its cancellation, but a couple of months later the creators said that work on the game was going to resume soon. However nothing was ever heard from them since then. As this article argues, the game's main artist is busy with movie industry work, so he might not have the time and capacity to work on the game again.
  • Alone in the Dark: Capcom was supposed to release AITD 3 for the Japanese market, but decided not to go with it.
  • Alter Ego was going to have a sequel focusing on child raising that was eventually cancelled.
  • Aftershock was a shooter planned for the 32X. It was cancelled after its studio was closed.
  • Official Dreamcast Magazine did a preview write-up on an intriguing Survival Horror game titled Agartha and developed by Frédérick Raynal, the man behind the original Alone in the Dark series. Unfortunately, Sega Europe pulled the plug on many of their games in development as the Dreamcast's sales faltered so Agartha never saw the light of day, although a short tech demo for the game finally surfaced in January 2018.
  • American McGee's Oz was a cancelled spinoff to American McGee's Alice based on Land of Oz books. McGee later attempted to develop another game based on the Land of Oz, OZombie, but the game was never released.
  • Animal Crossing 2 was announced for the GameCube, but no details were given other than the name and a few screenshots, and it ultimately never came out. Based on the screenshots that were released, it's assumed that it was a localization of the Japan-only Dōbutsu no Mori e+, and the international release was halted to focus on the DS's Animal Crossing: Wild World instead.
  • Animal Wars was a game developed by Factor 5, created for Sony. It was part of a deal where Factor 5 would develop games for the publisher that started with Lair. The game was Star Fox meets Valkyria Chronicles, featuring a version of World War I with anthropomorphic animals. Sam, a dog in an aviator suit, would have been the central character, with a stage where the player controls a mouse through a field with enemies large in perspective. Vehicles would have features resembling the animal associated with them. However, Sony decided to cancel Animal Wars to ensure Lair would be finished in time. Because of Lair's disappointing sales and reviews, the deal with Sony was dissolved and Animal Wars was never worked on again.
  • Ant Simulator was an ant simulation game in development that ended up being cancelled. The lead programmer resigned after claiming the game's Kickstarter funds were being mismanaged.
  • A third game in the Apprentice indie Point-and-Click adventure series has been in the works for quite some time now, with the previous games being released in 2003 and 2004, and the second game ending with the note "To be continued in Apprentice III: Checkmate!" The developers' website is still up, but it still reads the design and puzzles as being a little more than halfway finished, with nothing mentioned about the software.
  • Atriarch has been hyped as being a radical MMO since the turn of the millennium, advertising how it will be different from every other game produced before or since. However, the website seems to receive no updates except to add yet another year to the copyright span (but even that seems to have stopped as of 2012). The character races aren't completely fleshed out, either; the full profile for the Unarra has been "coming soon" since 2003.
  • Avalon was a Vehicular Combat game by the Climax Group in development for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, announced before either console was released.
  • The Avengers by THQ Studio Australia ended up cancelled when the studio was closed down and the rights went over to Ubisoft. A first-person brawler in the style of Left 4 Dead, players would take control of Iron Man, Thor, Captain America and The Incredible Hulk (with Black Widow, Hawkeye, War Machine and Ms. Marvel planned as unlockable characters) to fight off hordes of superpowered aliens, including Super-Skrulls. There were also tentative plans for an independent side plot that would have featured Ant-Man, The Vision, and Ultron, but it is unknown if it would have made it into the final game. The game was going to have an original storyline written by Brian Bendis, which would have been a loose adaptation of Secret Invasion mixed with the visual style of the Avengers live-action movie. Though the game was cancelled, one of the Skrulls designed for it was featured in the movie's toyline.
  • Beating Axelay on the hardest difficulty gives you an additional message after the credits that states "See you again at "Axelay2""(sic) but no such game was ever released and no information about it is available.
  • Baldur's Gate III: The Black Hound (A.K.A. "Jefferson", the source of Van Buren's engine) was originally intended to be a Divorced Installment from the "Bhaalspawn Saga", developed by Black Isle. It would have been set in Faerun, and would have revolved around the player hunting an evil cleric and witnessing visions from a "black hound" who died in their lap. The game was quietly canceled in 2003, and a planned adaptation of the plot as a module for Neverwinter Nights 2 (written by Josh Sawyer) was canned due to a lack of time to complete it.
  • Not only was there a plan for a third game in the main Baldur's Gate series of video games, but the console spin-off series, Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance, was planned to have a third entry in order to create a Dark Alliance trilogy. Unfortunately, with the closure of the publisher, Black Isle Studios, and its parent company, Interplay, the developer Snowblind Studios was forced to halt development on the project sometime around 2004.
  • For a while, there were rumors about a third Baten Kaitos game for the Nintendo DS. It was later confirmed to have never gotten past the first stage of production; however, rumors about Baten Kaitos 3 still persist.
  • Bayonetta 3 was announced to be in development in 2017. And after that, nothing. Despite the complete absence of news since then, series producer Hideki Kamiya has insisted multiple times the game is still being worked on.
  • B-Bomb, a first-party Sega Genesis action game based around Ass Kicks You, appeared at the 1992 Summer Consumer Electronics Show as a playable demo, but was never finished.
  • Babylon 5 was supposed to get a game called Into The Fire, developed by Sierra studios back in The '90s when Babylon 5 was a hot property. However, Sierra was going through "corporate reorganization", laid off staff and canceled the game. The fans eventually took matters into their own hands and created The Babylon Project from the FreeSpace 2 engine.
  • The sequel to the critically acclaimed (but poor selling) Beyond Good & Evil has been in limbo for over 10 years now, Ubisoft confirms the title exists in some form or another but not on the status of the game. The only hints the public got that it wasn't forgotten was a leaked concept trailer in 2009 that made the game look more like Assassin's Creed IN SPACE!. The game has been officially announced at E3 2017 as a completely different concept featuring new characters, and is billed as a prequel. The original premise of a sequel will probably never see the light as a video game.
  • Ballerium was an MMORTS developed by Majorem, with beta testing in 2003-2004, to be published by Interplay. The game was cancelled in 2005, relaunched in 2007 by Sleepy Giant, and was defunct by 2008.
  • The third game in the Banjo-Kazooie series was conceived as a platformer on the Nintendo GameCube before becoming the vehicle-building game it is today. It would have been a semi-remake of the first game in the series, but with unexpected twists, such as the mountain in the first level erupting as a volcano. The vehicles were added because the levels ended up being huge, so much that vehicles were necessary to navigate them in any reasonable amount of time. Unfortunately for Rare, most fans would have greatly preferred that kind of game and it probably would have sold much better.
  • In 2004, Designer Eric Flannum had discussed the possibility of a potential sequel to The Bard's Tale, but nothing has come of it since.
  • There were several earlier attempts to develop The Bard's Tale IV. Rebecca Heineman worked on three versions of The Bard's Tale IV, which were not released due to cancellation by Electronic Arts. In 1989, a game planned to be The Bard's Tale IV was released as Dragon Wars. A 1992 The Bard's Tale IV was going to be released in two parts, but was cancelled. Contraband Entertainment developed a 3D The Bard's Tale IV in 1998, which was cancelled around 2000. A 2003 The Bard's Tale IV project became the fan game Bard’s Legacy: Devil Whiskey. Eventually, inXile Entertainment released their own version of The Bard's Tale IV.
  • Battlecruiser 3000AD had a number of overambitious ideas that did not materialize.
    • Battlecruiser Commander was an intended sequel that was planned to have two add-on packs: Battlecruiser 3000AD: Skirmish Pak, which would have had multiplayer, and Battlecruiser 3000AD: Strike Pak, which would feature a first person ship perspective, boarding ships, and player targeted ships.
    • Battlecruiser 3020AD was another eventually-vaporware sequel that would have had a first person ship perspective and persistent online multiplayer.
    • Universal Combat started as the Battlecruiser 3000AD first person ship perspective add-on, Battlecruiser Tactical Engagement, replaced by "Project ABC" or "After Battlecruiser", intended for a 2001 Xbox and PC release, developed in 2001 as Battlecruiser Generations before becoming Universal Combat.
    • Battlecruiser Generations/Universal Combat was intended to have a persistent world MMO version, Battlecruiser Online.
    • Galactic Command was initially a series of action games based on the Universal Combat engine, Universal Combat: Hostile Intent/Hostile Intent: Planetfall, Universal Combat: Hold the Line, and Universal Combat: Edge to Edge.
  • B.C. by Peter Molyneux would have been a game about running a cave man settlement. The game was cancelled in 2004.
  • Tales of Game's successfully ran a Kickstarter campaign for a sequel to Barkley, Shut Up and Jam: Gaiden titled Barkley 2 Curse Of Cuchulainn back in 2012 and it was supposed to be released in either late 2013 or early 2014. After years of radio silence, in earlier June, 2019 it was stated that the game most of team had left the project at the point with only a few volunteer programmers remaining, with the whole production going over the scope and collapsing under its own weight. The remaining developers released a barely pre-alpha demo and states they will attempt to continue working on the game. By 2021, the last remaining developer called it quits and cancelled the game for good.
  • 2-D fighting game Beast's Fury was announced in 2013 by indie developer Evil Dog Productions. It was subject to an extremely contentious production — the developers actually had no idea how to make a fighting game, severely underestimated the development costs, started multiple crowdfunding campaigns with varying degrees of success, and in general were very mean-spirited to its audience, especially to critics. A demo — albeit a poorly-made, buggy one at that — was released after much delay, and it ended up being the closest Evil Dog ever got to bringing the game to fruition; the project was cancelled in 2016, with bridges burned and tons of livid staff members and customers (many of which out as much as thousands of dollars) targeting Evil Dog's leader, Ryhan Stevens, for his incompetence. It's understandable that the fighting game community now associates the game —and Stevens — as perfect examples of the ''don'ts" of game development.
  • Beyond Zero Tolerance was a cancelled Mega Drive and 32X sequel to the Mega Drive game Zero Tolerance.
  • Bio Force Ape, a fast-moving NES Platform Game by Seta starring a genetically altered chimpanzee using pro-wrestling moves, was previewed in 1991 as an upcoming release, but canceled within a year. Reports in 2005 that a prototype of the game had been discovered turned out to be a hoax, but five years later an actual prototype cartridge of the game was discovered. James Rolfe and Mike Matei took a swing at it.
  • BioForge was going to have a sequel, BioForge II. It was eventually cancelled to be reworked as an add-on to the first game, but the add-on was also cancelled.
  • BIONICLE was no stranger to scrapped ideas and concepts during its ten year run from 2001-2010. This even extended to video games as noted below.
    • BIONICLE: The Legend of Mata Nui was a PC game to be released in September 2001, as part of LEGO's multi-media promotional push for their then-new toy franchise. It was advertised with screenshots, concept art and the intro video in catalogs, magazines, LEGO instruction booklets and on promo CDs, and LEGO even forbid their writer from concluding the story in the comic series, because they wanted to tell it via the game. BIONICLE: Legend Of Mata Nui would have been a 3rd person exploration/platform game for PC, based on the popular LEGO brand. Players would have had the opportunity to play as each of the six original Toa characters, meet the islanders personally, and fight their way to confront Makuta himself. And the entire thing would have been canon, standing as the most complete and most official telling of the 2001 storyline. It never came out, although a number of beta disks are still floating around, and a decade after its cancellation, some gameplay footage was released on YouTube featuring gameplay footage of Onua's level.
      • The likely reasons for its canning are the bugs (the first level cannot be completed, for one), general gameplay and design issues, and probably the lack of budget and a rushed schedule which the infamous Maori lawsuitnote  had a large hand in. Allegedly, the game also had trouble running on most PCs of the time. For years, fans had tried to acquire the beta disks from their owners, even contacting the current right-holder of the game, to no avail for years on end making the game a sort of Holy Grail for the Bionicle fandom.
      • On February 10th, 2018 however, YouTube user Vahkiti (host of channel The Beaverhouse, and co-admin of the BioMedia Project content archival fansite) streamed a leaked copy of an alpha build of the game. It was emailed to the other admin of BioMedia Project JuniorMasterBuilder by an anonymous source, with Vahkiti's co-host of his YouTube Channel speculating on-stream that the source may have been an ex-Lego or Saffire employee. Due to the found version being in it's alpha stages, there are a few differences from the clips leaked previously. The main differences being some textures and the main menu in DeepBrick's video not being present, a debug screen in it's place. Thanks to this, the other levels of the game are now playable. Said leak revealed several flaws that might have caused its cancellation. The motion controls are clunky — there is no transition between standing still and jutting forward with great speed. The fights are either boring (you can defeat bigger foes without having to near them) or annoying (as it's hard to aim at smaller enemies). The environments, while vast and pretty, barely have any challenges or minigames to offer, as the developers were notoriously inexperienced at making these. At the very end of the first level, there is an impassable glitch. And the story presentation was so cheesy, the Story Team would have de-canonized great chunks of it. These factors and the tight deadline are what probably lead to the game never getting finished. LEGO simply states it wasn't up to their standard of quality, but it's also said that the game could only run on a particular type of graphics card. Thankfully, fans got to play a truly great on-line game for compensation, which was originally intended to be a mere side-note to the PC game.
      • BIONICLE 2: City of Legends was the never-finished 2004 follow up to the 2003 video game tie-in Bionicle: The Game. Before the release of the linked video in late 2012, no one even knew it had been in development. Years later, a document pitch from 2003 was discovered and uploaded to The Biomedia Project giving more details to what the game might have been like essentially being Bionicle meets Prince of Persia gameplay wise.
  • B.I.OS. Fear was a first-person action-adventure game that took place on a futuristic Earth ruined by mega-corporations. When the Earth began to die, humanity began living in biodomes, but eventually history repeated and even the biodomes began to fail. The goal is to help save the biodomes.
  • The shooter Black Angel was originally a Genesis game, before being moved to the 32-X and subsequently cancelled due to the studio closing.
  • Blood II: Revelations was a planned second expansion for Blood, to be developed by Tequila Software, which included several new weapons (a much more powerful pistol, throwing knives, a tranquilizer gun, etc.), changes to some existing weapons (such as letting secondary fire be used with akimbo MAC-10s or giving a melee attack to The Orb), and a story involving Caleb taking control of the Cabal only to be caught up in a struggle between them and a Renegade Splinter Faction called the "Krest", which would have (appropriate to its name) ended on the revelation that the player was actually controlling Tchernobog controlling Caleb in Blood II, rather than controlling Caleb directly - the final boss fight would have involved the Krest's leader stealing the essence of Tchernobog, whereupon you controlled him in a fight against Caleb.
  • BloodStorm promises a sequel at the end of the game, but a Blood Storm II was never made.
  • Bonk:
    • The Bonk/PC Genjin series had an advertised but never-released RPG spinoff called RPC Genjin.
    • A revival titled Bonk: Brink of Extinction was being developed for WiiWare, XBLA and PSN, with a plot involving Bonk attempting to save his world from the threat of an incoming meteor. Then the Fukushima disaster happened, and the game was almost immediately cancelled, with its developer (still reeling from being let go by their previous publisher after working on the Misbegotten Multiplayer Mode of the 2009 Wolfenstein) closing shop before the month was out. Some gameplay footage was shown at E3 2010, but the next year it was canceled along with many other Hudson Soft titles after the company was bought by Konami.
  • Bounty Arms, a 2D run-and-gun game for the PlayStation by Data West starring a pair of Lovely Angels with mechanical arms, was announced for the system in its early months. All that was ever released of the game was a playable demo of Obvious Beta quality, not counting the fact that it ends after half a stage.
  • Bracken Tor: Time of Tooth and Claw was first advertised for preorder in 2009. In the years following, release dates were repeatedly given and then pushed back, with the same general explanation every time: the game was very near to completion, but was being delayed to add features or improve content. The game has never officially been cancelled, and as of Summer 2015, the developer's website estimates a Fall 2015 release...
  • Break Shot, a billiards game by Konami for the MSX2, was advertised but never released.
  • The Broken Hourglass was going to be an isometric party-based RPG in a Byzantine-like setting, inspired by Baldur's Gate II. The game was in development from 2005 and was cancelled in 2011.
  • Bully 2, a hypothetical sequel to Bully, has been rumored to be in the works since 2009 by the Composer of the first game. However, very little other than offhand comments have ever been made in regards to the game and nothing at all has been heard since 2013. There however was a suppose leak of concept art of character and environments in 2017, though it hasn't been confirmed if it was real as of February 2020.

    Video Game Titles: C-E 
  • Cabbage is the codename for an unreleased Nintendo 64DD Raising Sim. It would link to the Game Boy, where you could carry around your creature like a Virtual Pet. There were also plans for additional disks that featured new toys. The game was ultimately cancelled with the failure of the 64DD, but elements of it were used in Animal Crossing, Pikmin, and Nintendogs.
  • California Raisins: The Grape Escape was developed late in the NES lifespan. That's right, a game based on a marketing ploy to eat more fruit. Despite being finished and reviewed by many magazines, it utterly vanished into the night without being released on the NES. It actually had some cool concepts, like moonwalking... which resulted from a game bug. More can be found here and here.
  • Campfire: Become Your Nightmare was a game that was being developed for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox by a Swedish company called Daydream Software, who only managed to put out a live-action trailer and a press release before going into liquidation in 2003. It was to have been a "reverse Survival Horror" game where you play as one of four masked killers stalking and murdering teens at a campground with a variety of weapons, similar to the later games Manhunt and Naughty Bear only with more explicit Slasher Movie influences.
  • Capcom Fighting All-Stars was going to be a 3D fighting game featuring several classic Capcom characters such as Ryu, Charlie, Chun-Li, Batsu, Akira, Strider Hiryu, Poison, and Mike Haggar, and original characters such as Ingrid, Rook and D.D. The game wasn't received well with beta testers, and was cancelled and turned into the less-than-stellar Capcom Fighting Evolution.
    • The original 1987 Street Fighter was the only 2D Street Fighter game not to be represented in Evolution, but originally, that was not going to be the case. Sagat (who would've lacked his chest scar), Eagle (who would've used his Capcom vs. SNK 2 sprite) and Retsu (in what would have been his first appearance since 1987) were all planned for the game, but had to be omitted because of time constraints.
    • All-Stars was initially intended to recycle 3D assets that had been created for another cancelled Capcom fighting game, which was heavily implied to be Capcom vs. SNK 3. Director Toyohisa Tanabe hinted that because of this, Kyo Kusanagi from The King of Fighters was even planned to appear as a Guest Fighter in All-Stars at one point.
  • Cartoon Network: Backlot Party, featuring characters from several of the channel's shows, was planned for a 2015 release, but no further information was given. See the Lost Media entry here.
  • Castlevania
    • Castlevania: Resurrection was announced as a Sega Dreamcast launch title, featuring Sonia Belmont. Late in development, it was cancelled for reasons that remain mysterious.
    • A Castlevania title, Castlevania: The Bloodletting, in development for the Sega 32X got canned when the system was discontinued; some of its spritework was recycled for Castlevania: Symphony of the Night and Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin. The game's fan nickname is Castlevania: The Bloodletting.
    • Among the many Game.com titles that got the axe was a port of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night; while there's not much information available, it seems that it didn't get far in development.
    • A Castlevania game was announced for the PS3 and Xbox 360 in 2008, with a short video of Alucard as the main character, in 3D. It's likely Konami canceled the game to focus on Castlevania: Lords of Shadow.
  • Developer "Dejawolfs" was working on a fan remake of Castlevania in Unreal Engine. Development stopped due to a cease and desist, though the developer is attempting to acquire a license from Konami.
  • CatDog was going to get a Licensed Game for the PlayStation called CatDog: Saving Mean Bob, but the game was never released.
  • Catharsistage! was announced in 2018 by DMM Games, and was to be an idol Raising Sim where the player took on the role of both manager and therapist for an agency's boy bands. In 2019, the official website closed with a message on the developers' Twitter saying that they would temporarily stop updating both the website and the Twitter in order to focus on making a more high-quality game, but nothing has come of it.
  • The Cave Story PSP port by Variant Interactive was just wishful thinking, as the company soon folded and never got Studio Pixel's official permission.
  • Cel Damage was going to have a sequel. The sequel would offer new character designs (such as Violet and Dominique having new hairstyles and more cleavage, Sinder being made cute, and Fowl Mouth becoming colorized), on-foot combat in addition to vehicle combat, many of the changes and improvements from Cel Damage Overdrive, and new level themes, such as islands and underwater levels. Sadly, EA pulled the plug on the game before it could even progress past the early prototype stage, just so they could make room for more sports games and Harry Potter movie tie-ins. Years after its cancellation, former Pseudo Interactive employees posted the concept art and a 15-second montage of clips from the early prototype to the Internet.
  • The computer game adaptation of Champions, the pencil-and-paper superhero RPG, provides an epic example of this trope. Cover-featured in a 1992 issue of ''Computer Gaming World'', it promised to be an ambitious and groundbreaking game that would be faithful to both the RPG and the superhero genre. It never happened. According to Steve Peterson, designer of the original Champions, the game was about 50% complete when it was canceled. Problems included the game's extremely ambitious design for its day along with the divorce of the game's chief developers, a husband-and-wife team. Champions would finally become a computer game in 2009 as Champions Online, but apart from the underlying intellectual property, it has no relation to the vaporware classic. Also, a Champions Online port for the Xbox360 was eventually cancelled.
  • Chaos Code: Next Episode of Xtreme Tempest was announced at EVO Japan in January 2020, only to be canned not even a month later when publisher FK Digital announced the game had been cancelled and that they would end development of new titles by the end of March 2020. Series producer Mickey Lin revealed after the announcement that the game had been in development for years with his brother as lead developer, but he passed away of illness in 2017. Lin attempted to keep up development, but it ultimately proved to be too big of an undertaking both for him and for FKD as a whole.
  • Chaos Chronicles, by Coreplay, was going to be a D&D 3.5E isometric, party-based, tactical turn-based RPG on a hex grid.
  • Cheetahmen 2 was envisioned to be part of a long running game franchise to rival Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The game was not released, aside from the discovery of some very unfinished prototype cartridges.
  • Chocobo Racing 3D was announced for the 3DS, and was cancelled in 2013.
  • ClayFighter:
    • ClayFighter 2 was announced for the 32X but was cancelled. A port/updated version of C2 for 3DO Interactive Multiplayer announced in a magazine ad, which would include Claytalities and new features.
  • Clayfighter 63 1/3 was planned to be ported to the PlayStation under the title of Clayfighter X-treme with all of the characters from Sculptor's Cut, the gameplay from the original 63 1/3 and one of the characters that was removed from the N64 games, a homeless parody of Robocop called, of course, Hobocop. The N64 Clayfighters themselves were a reworking of a canceled Clayfighter 3 for the SNES and M2 console. An installment for the Nintendo DS and Wii, titled Clayfighter: Call of Putty, was planned as an Updated Re-release of 63 1/3.
    • An untitled ClayFighter 2016 game would have been a megamix of all three games like Mortal Kombat Trilogy, with characters and stages done in higher resolution, characters with new moves based on unused sprites from past games, and the return of HoboCop as a playable character.
  • Colossal Kaiju Combat! spent several years in Development Hell with only a buggy baseline alpha build to show for it, and was ultimately cancelled before the first official game, The Fall of Nemesis, was made.
  • Command & Conquer:
    • Westwood's version of Tiberian Twilight was going to be known as Tiberian Incursion, the third game in the Tiberian continuity in place of Tiberium Wars, and would have continued the post-apocalyptic plot set by Tiberian Sun. Not much is known about what was intended, but it would have led into Red Alert 2 due to another time travel act and conclude the Tiberian series. Red Alert 3 would have been the bridge between the original Red Alert and Tiberian Dawn, showing how the Brotherhood of Nod would have risen from the ashes of the Soviet Union. This would later all be nixed by EA, possibly because of the confusing plot lines involving time travel.
    • Command & Conquer: Renegade was going to be followed by Command & Conquer: Renegade 2. One version was going to tie in to Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2, another version was to be set after Yuri's Revenge.
    • Tiberium was going to be a tactical FPS using Unreal Engine 3.
    • Command & Conquer: Continuum was to be a Command & Conquer MMORPG.
    • At some point the 2013 Command & Conquer free to play game by Victory Games, cancelled in 2013, was planned as a sequel to Command & Conquer: Generals.
  • The last Commander Keen game ends with an ad for "Commander Keen in The Universe is Toast!", planned for Christmas 1992. It never happened — their publisher at the time, Apogee, offered more guaranteed money for a game featuring John Carmack's new 3-D engine rather than a sidescroller. What makes this vaporware instead of a mere tease is that it's never really been officially abandoned, and a couple of the creators still insist they'd like to make the sequel.
    • After years of the franchise being dormant, a sequel was announced on June 9, 2019. Commander Keen was now an adult; the story would focus on Keen's children, Billy and Billie, as they attempted to rescue him. It was to be a free-to-play mobile game, and the gameplay itself was radically different from all the games before it. The reaction was, to say the least, disastrous, with a multitude of fans (and even one of Keen's creators) decrying it. No further news was released afterwards, and all traces of the game were scrubbed from the internet in June 2020.
  • Conker's Bad Fur Day was originally designed to be a cute, Banjo-Kazooie type platformer named "Conker's Quest", just like Conker's Pocket Tales for Game Boy Color. They then revamped the game, and changed it to "Twelve Tales: Conker 64", in which it was more of a Spyro the Dragon-type platformer. In the end, Rare got aggravated about the complaints of Twelve Tales: Conker 64 looking childish and too similar to Banjo-Kazooie, and ended up changing the story completely, such as timeskipping Conker from a child to an alcoholic adult and avoiding the E rating altogether. Thus, making the Conker's Bad Fur Day we know today.
    • In the sequel, Conker's Other Bad Day or Conker: Gettin' Medieval, it was planned that Conker did so horribly as king (he squandered the treasury's worth of moolah for parties, beer and hookers to a point of bankruptcy) that he was thrown in the dungeon and had to escape, ball and chain in tow, back to his throne. The sequel was cancelled by Microsoft in favor of Kinect Sports. Also, another draft of the sequel was going to have Conker killed as early as the first scene in friendly fire.
  • A Wii game based on Connie Talbot's Over The Rainbow album was scheduled to be released on the first quarter of 2009, but no further information was given apart from an announcement from the then-young Talbot to appear in E3 2009 and promote the game.
    • If there's any consolation, what appears to be Full Motion Video snippets of the game did surface on a fan-run channel, a few years after the game was supposed to be released and shortly before Data Design Interactive went bankrupt.
    • What appears to be a final pre-release build of the game did surface on eBay and was subsequently purchased by video game preservationist Forest of Illusion who uploaded pictures of the disc on Twitter. This was in addition to two videos taken by a DDI employee which showed Talbot herself demonstrating the game at their E3 2009 booth.
  • Contact was Carl Sagan's idea for a non-violent video game that would teach astronomy by starting on the Earth and finding a location in the Milky Way galaxy, or finding the Earth from another point in the galaxy. It was envisioned either as one game with two modes, or two separate games, Contact 1 and Contact 2.
  • Coolsville was being developed by Music Pen for the fall of 1994 release, but it was later cancelled after the publisher closed down. It was going to be a jazz-themed PC adventure game aimed towards children.
  • Converse City Ball was a cancelled street basketball game for the Sega 32X. It was promoted as having over 15k frames of hand-drawn animation.
  • Corridor 7: Alien Invasion was successful enough for the developers to immediately begin work on a sequel titled Corridor 8: Galactic Wars. This got as far as a prototype (really a working mockup), running on the Build engine and using assets from Doom, but Capstone's bankruptcy killed the game.
  • A handful of Crash Bandicoot games were either never released or became something else:
    • There was a game developed by Tom Ruegger, best known as the creator of Tiny Toon Adventures and Animaniacs, but it was ultimately canceled.
    • Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped was going to have a follow-up game on the PS2 by Mark Cerny, featuring free-roaming gameplay and interplanetary travel, to be published by Konami. Some game elements were worked into Crash Bandicoot: The Wrath of Cortex.
    • Crash Bandicoot: Evolution was going to be a game on the GameCube, featuring the character Foofie, a planet known as Gaudi, a floating city, and a fish world. Some elements of the game were worked into Crash Twinsanity on the PS2 and Xbox, and some game mechanics and ideas ended up in Sonic Boom, made by former Naughty Dog developers.
    • Crash Twinsanity was going to have a sequel, Crash Twinsanity 2, taking place in a Trapped in TV Land setting with over 25 levels.
    • Cortex Chaos was planned to be a followup to Crash Twinsanity, on the GameCube, PS2 and Xbox.
    • Crush Bandicoot, by Magenta Software, was going to be a Villain Protagonist game starring Crash's evil twin Crush, on the GameCube, PS2 and Xbox in 2004.
    • Crash Clash Racing was going to be a racing game on the GameCube, PS2 and Xbox. The game was reworked into Crash Tag Team Racing.
    • Crash Tag Team Racing was going to have a port on the Nintendo DS in 2005.
    • Bandicoot Brats was going to be a Crash Bandicoot game by Krome Studios, but was cancelled to focus on The Legend of Spyro.
    • Crash Online was mentioned on a Sierra website from 2006-2007. No details are known, but it may have ended up as the interactive Crash Village on the Activision website.
    • Crash Landed, by Radical Entertainment, was going to be a Crash Bandicoot reboot on Nintendo DS, PlayStation 3, Wii, and Xbox 360, developed around 2010-2013 before development shifted to the ill-fated [PROTOTYPE 2].
    • Crash Team Racing, by High Impact Games, was going to be a racing game and spinoff to Crash Landed, being developed around 2010. The game was cancelled, and elements were worked into the game Dream Works Super Star Kartz.
    • A PlayStation 4 Crash Bandicoot game was being developed by Cerny Games. After being cancelled, elements of the game were reworked into the game Knack.
  • Crimsonland 2 is certainly taking its sweet time to appear.
  • The Crossing, by Arkane Studios, was going to be a hybrid single-player and multiplayer FPS, set in parallel timelines of Paris, and was cancelled in 2012.
  • Cry On, a collaboration between studios Mistwalker and Cavia, was announced in 2005, but abruptly cancelled in 2008 due to "poor economic conditions", much to the dismay of journalists. A concept trailer for the game was later released in 2014, four years after Cavia went under.
  • Culpa Innata has a sequel, but it has not been released because the developers were owed money by the publishers and the game finished on such Gainax Ending. The rest of the story was eventually published as a book with the same name, however, this probably means the sequel won't be released as a game anymore.
  • Crusader was going to have a multiplayer add-on for Crusader: No Regret, titled Crusader: No Survivors. The third game would have been titled Crusader II, Crusader: No Mercy, or Crusader 3: No Escape.
  • Cryamore which had a successful Kickstarter in 2013, semi-regular updates until 2017, and then two updates in 2019 & 2021 detailing how the game was on-ice.
  • Cytus was going to get an arcade version named Cytus Omega, which was announced in 2015. However, it was cancelled in 2018 due to the expiration of the contract between Capcom and Rayark, with Rayark feeling that the game was still not at the level that they wanted it to be at.
  • Dai Koukai Frontier by Capcom, initially Minna to Dai Koukai Frontier as part of the Minna to series, was going to be a pirate themed Mobile Phone Game starring Ruby Heart.
  • Daikatana was going to have a PlayStation port. A Daikatana sequel was being developed by Human Head Studios on the Unreal Engine; when the project was cancelled, the developers began working on Rune.
  • In 1995, a first-person sandbox PC game called Damocles was supposed to come out. Its goal would have been to explore a solar system in order to save a planet from a collision with a comet. The solar system would have been completely explorable; the players would have had the freedom to fly in space, land and move freely on any planet, enter any building, explore any room, pick up any object, blow up any building and even destroy any planet they wanted. Psygnosis canceled the game when it was practically complete.
  • Dance TraX was a dancing game in the vein of DanceDanceRevolution or Pump It Up (though with a differently-designed pad than those two) which was slated to hit arcades in 2006 or '07. However, everything about the game went silent after the company that made In the Groove got Screwed by the Lawyers; the developers likely believed Dance TraX would have met the same fate. Some of the songs made their way to StepMania, but nobody knows if they're based on official data from the game or not.
  • Daredevil was going to be a 2003-2004 game for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox, featuring a series of fight scene vignettes emulating the comic stories. It was reworked as a Wide Open Sandbox game to take advantage of Daredevil's radar abilities. It was reworked again as a level based game where the radar abilities became more useless in the narrower environments, and the game was cancelled. There were also plans for an Elektra game as a followup. The game would have had the Man Without Fear battle a number of familiar foes such as The Kingpin, Silvermane, Hammerhead and the Rose, have appearances by Elektra and Echo and have unlockable costumes such as his original red and yellow suit. Daredevil would have traversed through Hell's Kitchen either by swinging on his billyclub or by grinding (something Sony requested and Marvel was very wary of adding because Daredevil doesn't grind). There was also a precursor of the Detective Mode from Batman: Arkham Asylum based on Daredevil's Radar Sense. The game would have been based on Frank Miller's Elektra Lives Again and had Daredevil trying to stop a crime war when it seems the Kingpin was murdered. However, the game was shelved when Marvel, very unhappy with the fact that the studio making it, 5000 Ft., opted to side with Sony a little too much, refused to let it be approved. This wasn't counting the fact that there was an internal war between the old members of the team and new ones hired.
  • The on-rails Darksider was a 32X game that was cancelled for being too similar to another game by the studio.
  • Dark Zion was going to be an MMORPG, by Wombat Games, with the lead programmers of Ultima Online, and a story by author Tad Williams. The game would have had a player controlled world with player run businesses, ecology, towns, and armies. Permadeath was planned as a possible feature.
  • Dawngate was a cancelled MOBA by Waystone Games.
  • Dead Island 2, the third game in the Dead Island series, was announced in 2014. In 2015, the original developer was dropped and replaced. In 2019 the second developer was removed and replaced with the current one, Dambuster. The game was given a March 2021 release, which has come and gone. There have been no updates from Deep Silver since.
  • Dead Phoenix, a Rail Shooter, starring a Winged Humanoid named Phoenix, was one of the "Capcom Five" note  set of games announced for the Nintendo GameCube, and the only one that wound up being canceled.
  • Dead Rush was an open-world action horror game for the PS2, Nintendo GameCube, and Xbox announced in 2004 by Activision. It was to be developed by Treyarchnote , and given a release date of 2005. The game was essentially described as "Grand Theft Auto with zombies!"; it was to even use GTA's style of "one big initial load screen and then no more after that" to make load times on all versions as minimal as possible, something that would have been impressive for a multi-console release of the time. The main character, an Amnesiac Hero named Jake, had a Wide Open Sandbox in which he could take on missions to help survivors during the Zombie Apocalypse, and uncover the truth behind the zombie outbreak. One feature about the game that would have been unique for its time was that Jake could collect parts from broken cars and make new ones with the help of a Wrench Wench, and the custom cars could have things like better armor and other attachments to make sure the cars could survive plowing through zombies (all cars would have had their own life bars of sorts).

    Given Treyarch had experience with open world games thanks to developing the excellent Spider-Man 2 and Ultimate Spider-Man games, hopes were high for it. The game was shown off at E3 2004 behind closed doors, but a trailer and many screenshots do exist (and if you were a Game Informer subscriber in 2004, then chances are good you have the issue of the magazine that did an expansive preview of the game). Sadly, Dead Rush was cancelled just a few months after it was shown off at E3, with Activision stating that the game "wasn't meeting expectations". Note that this was before Activision turned Guitar Hero and Call of Duty into their main Cash Cow Franchises, so even before Activision became reliant on their "big name" IPs they were still catching flak from gamers for cancelling promising-looking projects.
  • Deep Down was announced by Capcom at Sony's PlayStation 4 announcement conference in February 2013 as a PS4 exclusive title. Later on that year, it was announced that the game would be a free-to-play title. Apart from that, Deep Down has been conspicuously absent from trade shows and electronics expos that Capcom has been present at, and as of 2018 it still doesn't have a release date.
  • When they went out of business, Looking Glass Studios — makers of Thief, Ultima Underworld, the original System Shock, and many other such games — was working on a game called Deep Cover, a spy-themed stealth thriller game spanning the length of the Cold War.
  • Demonik, the game featured in Grandma's Boy, was going to be a game by Majesco Entertainment for the Xbox 360.
  • Deus Ex: Mankind Divided ended on a very obvious Sequel Hook setup, but has yet to have a follow-up. Although the game underperformed in sales and reviews, both Eidos Montreal and Square Enix has denied the sequel is cancelled, stating work will proceed on it once they have the staff to do so. Eidos Montreal is continuing to work on Marvel's Avengers until 2022, but fans are worried if that game's underperformance will make Square Enix put them down afterwards.
  • A Dirty Harry game was being developed from 2004-2006 by The Collective, Inc., set for a 2007 release on the PS3 and Xbox 360. The game was to take place between Dirty Harry and Magnum Force, and was to be included in a five disc movie box set along with all the films. Clint Eastwood expressed interest in continuing the film's story over several video games. TimeGate Studios was to rebuild the game in a new engine, with help from Monolith Productions, but the game was cancelled in 2008. Sensory Sweep Studios were developing more Dirty Harry games for PSP, DS, and Xbox, along with a different PS2 game with a Wii port, and a PC port of the PS3/Xbox 360 game, none of which were released.
  • Disney Infinity had plans for several characters for 3.0 before following up with a 4.0 sequel. Due to increasing development costs and lack of income from making more than enough figures than what was being publicly demanded, Disney Interactive was forced to shut down the franchise and other self-publishing operations without any warning. Especially a let down as there had been hope for especially Darkwing Duck and Gravity Falls figures later on in 3.0's life, but alas, they were not to be.
  • There was going to be a GameCube sequel to Diddy Kong Racing entitled Donkey Kong Racing. It was going to include the entire Kong family instead of only Diddy, and instead of racing in karts, planes, and hovercrafts, players would race on elephants, birds, and other jungle animals. The project was canned once Rareware left Nintendo for Microsoft.
    • The game wasn't immediately canned after that; Rare still had the source code, and they attempted to retool it into a Sabre Wulf game called Sabreman Stampede. Even in this form, however, the game suffered some development troubles, and after the commercial failure of Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts, the game got axed for good.
  • Divine Divinity developer Larian Studios planned to make an RPG, Ragnarok Unless, later titled The Lady, the Mage & the Knight or LMK. The game was planned to have 8-bit graphics, was remade with 16-bit graphics as a game in the The Dark Eye universe, and had gameplay similar to Diablo II and Ultima VII. The game was cancelled and the engine and game assets were used to make Divine Divinity.
  • DJ Hero 3D, announced for the 3DS, was not released.
  • Around the release of the game Rage, a game known as Doom 4 was in development, nicknamed by fans as Call of Doom for its resemblance to the Call of Duty franchise. The game went unreleased, and ended up being replaced by a more properly Doom- like game that came out in 2016.
  • Dragon Age 4 was first announced in 2015. Originally, it was going to be a smaller, more story driven narrative but development was shifted to Bioware's other struggling projects and it was pushed back. In 2018, the entire project was scrapped and restarted to add a live-service element to the game with a planned 2021 release which was pushed to 2022. In 2021, the live-service element was scrapped, with Bioware pushing their release prediction from 2022 to 2023.
  • Dragon Empires was going to be a fantasy MMORPG by Codemasters. Developed in 2001, with a release planned for 2002, then pushed to 2003, the game was cancelled in 2004.
  • Dragon's Heaven, developed by Face, was a 2D fighter for Neo Geo that ended up not being released.
  • Before Square Enix decided to localize Dragon Quest VII on the Nintendo 3DS, a fan translation was underway that was canceled due to a cease and desist.
  • Dreamfall Chapters, the third game in The Longest Journey series, was first mentioned in 2007 and only started production in November 2012, due to designer Ragnar Tornquist working on The Secret World (itself also delayed frequently). Also, it's apparently not even going to be the proper conclusion to the series, which is going to have to wait for The Longest Journey Home... expected to be released some time around 2030if at all.
  • Duality was to be a first-person shooter developed by Double Aught (who worked with Bungie on Marathon Infinity); the main character is rescued from the labs of the Deciding Factor, a theocracy of sorts that's conducting inhumane genetic experiments, and must seek out the last remnant of the "ancient builders" and the evil force that destroyed them and was locked away in the planet's core (shades of the Jjaro and the W'rkncacnter from Marathon). It was meant to come out sometime in 1998, but ultimately never did.
  • Dudebro II started as an offhand comment on Neogaf back in December 2009, but soon began to enter development as an actual game, and the makers of the game even managed to get Jon St. John to voice the main character. The game was originally scheduled for release in summer 2010, but it was delayed to 2011 and as of now there is release date announced.
  • Dune Generations was going to be an online persistent multiplayer game based on Dune.
  • Dwarf Fortress's interface ('It's not coming in your lifetime, but it's coming.') will supposedly get a revamp when it gets closer to v1.0. Tarn Adams jokingly estimated in one interview that at his current rate of progress 1.0 will come out sometime in the early 2020s. Which isn't to say that it's not being worked on. The Toady One releases progress reports on a fairly regular basis, but given the type of game that Dwarf Fortress is, it will be a very, very long time before it's near completion. Considering that as of 2018 it was still only version 0.44.12, early 2020s may have been optimistic.
  • Duke Nukem:
    • Duke Nukem 3D: Reloaded/Duke Nukem Next-Gen was a fan project with support from Gearbox Software, and was a modern reimagining of Duke Nukem 3D on Unreal Engine 3, put on indefinite hold.
    • Duke Nukem: Chain Reaction and Duke Nukem: Proving Grounds were planned to be part of a handheld trilogy on DS/PSP, following Duke Nukem: Critical Mass.
    • Duke Nukem: D-Day/Duke Nukem: Man of Valor was going to be another third person shooter, this time for the PlayStation 2, following Duke Nukem: Time to Kill and Duke Nukem: Land of the Babes.
    • Duke Nukem: Endangered Species was a cancelled hunting game using a modified Carnivores engine. Some assets were used in Vivisector: Beast Within.
    • Duke Nukem: Mass Destruction was going to be a top down action RPG for PC, PS4 and Xbox ONE. Legal issues between 3D Realms and Gearbox Software over the Duke Nukem license caused the game to be refitted into an original title, Bombshell.
  • Edge of Twilight, a fantasy-based Action-Adventure game, was first revealed in 2007, but thought to be cancelled when developer Fuzzyeyes laid off many of its employees and ceased development of all projects in 2009. In late 2012, they announced it had not been cancelled, and gave a projected release date of summer 2013. Nothing has been heard since.
  • Dungeon Keeper 3: War for the Overworld, cancelled in 2000, would have featured an improved economy, a new playable race, new playable heroes, and multiplayer.
  • In the mid-2000s, Disney was looking to create a spinoff franchise based around the dwarfs of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (simply titled "Dwarfs'') taking a darker fantasy-epic tone (with a goal of drafting out thousands of years of Dwarf history). As a companion to a movie about how the dwarfs met and the origins of the Evil Queen and Magic Mirror, Disney hired Obsidian Entertainment to create a Darker and Edgier distant prequel set generations beforehand focusing around a young prince traveling with the ancestors of the Seven Dwarfs. Said game opened with the prince fighting a monster only to be revealed that he was put under some hallucination spell and that he actually killed his mother the queen, setting into motion a journey to redeem himself.
  • Eight Days by SCE London Studio was a PlayStation 3 action game that was indefinitely put on hold in 2009.
  • Eight Tentacles of the Apocalypse by Absurdus was announced as the third game in the "Kraken trilogy" after their two other games Eye of the Kraken (2002) and Carte Blanche (2006). The game would have tied the two others together to create a grand finale; Carte Blanche features a character export feature that presumably would have been used in Eight Tentacles. It had a tentative 2010 release date, but Absurdus got as a far as a trailer before the project went dormant.
  • The Elder Scrolls
    • The Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redguard was to be followed by The Elder Scrolls Adventures: Eye of Argonia.
    • The PSP version of Oblivion, known as The Elder Scrolls Travels: Oblivion, was going to be an action RPG with PSP exclusive features, and the first of its kind in the series. It was announced in November of 2006, and slated for release in June 2008, but the game was never heard about again, with no reason given for its cancellation, or even an acknowledgement that it was cancelled.
  • Elveon, a third person fantasy game by 10Tacle Studios, was to be released on PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 on Unreal Engine 3. Development may have moved to Unreal Engine 4, or the project may be cancelled.
  • Endless Saga by Webzen was going to be an anime-style PC and PlayStation 3 MMORPG running on Unreal Engine 3.
  • Epic Mickey was going to have a spin-off title called Disney Epic Racers. Serving as Disney's equivalent of Mario Kart, racers featured included Mickey and Oswald sharing a car, Cruella De Vil in her own car and Scrooge McDuck and his nephews in motorcycle with sidecar. Like the below Donald Duck game, it met its end with Junction Point.
  • Junction Point's demise after the failure of Epic Mickey 2 lead to the cancellation of a companion game called "Epic Donald", focused on the works of Carl Barks that would have also dived into Donald in Mathmagic Land, DuckTales (1987), The Three Caballeros, and The Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck.
  • EverQuest Next was going to be a Wide Open Sandbox MMO by Daybreak Game Company, on the ForgeLight engine, with Oculus Rift and Playstation 4 support, and was cancelled in March 2016. A concurrent project, EverQuest Next Landmark, was a creation tool focused on player made buildings and structures, which could be imported into EverQuest Next. EverQuest Next Landmark was retitled as Landmark and continued development as a separate project, until being shut down on February, 2017.
  • Evolve's development was suspended indefinitely with the expiration of Turtle Rock Studios' contract with 2K. While the game itself was available, all the content still being developed or adapted note  is now locked away unless 2K decides it might be worth releasing.
  • The EyeToy games EyeToy: Fight and EyeToy: Tales ultimately went unreleased.

    Video Game Titles: F-I 
  • Fable Legends was going to be a multiplayer action RPG by Lionhead Studios, on Unreal Engine 4, with PC and Xbox One cross-platform multiplayer. Announced in 2013, the game was cancelled March 2016.
  • Faith and a .45 was a Bonnie and Clyde-inspired Third-Person Shooter by Deadline Games set in The Great Depression, as an Xbox 360 and PS3 action game with the player able to switch between two characters who were in love. Originally announced for a 2009 release, Deadline did not find any publishers interested in funding the game, as the setting and the focus on a romantically-involved couple was considered too hard to sell to shooter audiences. With the commercial failure of Watchmen: The End Is Nigh, Deadline shut down in 2009 and the project died with them.
  • Fallout:
    • The first Fallout 3, aka Fallout: Van Buren, spent five years in development at Black Isle studios, and was almost at a releasable stage in development, when Interplay went belly-up in 2003 and closed Black Isle down. Bethesda Softworks eventually acquired the rights to develop the game for a late 2008 release, but opted to begin entirely from scratch, meaning that Black Isle's Van Buren version of the game will likely never see the light of day, outside of the leaked tech demo that the Fallout community began distributing in 2007. The game could have lived even after Black Isle died. Had they not been outbid by Bethesda, Fallout 3 would have been made by none other than Black Isle alumni developers Troika Games, creators of Arcanum: Of Steamworks & Magick Obscura and Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines. Several ideas from Van Buren would eventually be implemented in Fallout: New Vegas, though with changes to reflect the later time period. One of the most notable is Joshua Graham, the Burned Man - in Van Buren he was to be the "Hanged Man" instead, the first and statistically strongest companion available to the player, but also an extremely angry individual who was likely to piss off anyone and everyone else you came across. A group of fans hope to recreate Van Buren as it was originally envisioned.
    • Brotherhood of Steel 2 was in the works. Interplay loved this one so much that they cancelled Fallout: Van Buren to make the sequel. However, thanks to poor sales, Brotherhood of Steel 2 didn't get made either. Interestingly, when the design documentation was made public in 2009, it revealed it would have used concepts from both Van Buren and the cancelled Tactics sequel.
    • Fallout Tactics 2 would have taken place in Florida and the Southeastern USA, and concerned an irradiated, faulty GECK creating powerful, man-eating mutant plantlife that threatened to overwhelm the barren (but inhabitable) deserts. Stated influences included The Day of the Triffids and Doctor Who's "The Seeds Of Doom," and the designers said they were determined to avoid the flaws of the first game. The Central Theme would have been the moral ambiguity of "man versus nature."
      Gareth Davies: My favorite aspect of the theme was the idea that you essentially have nature doing its thing and rapidly rejuvenating the desert wastes, but those wacky humans feel the need to oppose it because they don't like the idea of becoming fertilizer.
    • Fallout Extreme was going to be a squad based first-person and third-person tactical shooter on the PlayStation 2 and Xbox using the Unreal engine.
    • Fallout Online was to be developed by Interplay. The rights were transferred to Bethesda, and it was eventually cancelled in 2012.
    • Obsidian designer Chris Avellone described a possible Fallout game set in the former Los Angeles area, the Boneyard, as either Fallout: New Vegas 2, or Fallout: Los Angeles, as a followup to New Vegas. However, Bethesda declined to continue working with Obsidian Entertainment in favor of in-house development.
    • Prior to the iOS/Android Fallout Shelter, John Carmack proposed a Fallout game for the iPhone.
    • A Fallout top-down shooter was being developed for the PlayStation by Interplay, along with a PlayStation port of Baldur's Gate.
  • A game based on The Fast and the Furious was announced for the Playstation 2 and Xbox in 2003. It was to be developed by Genki (the developer behind the Tokyo Xtreme Racer series) and published by Vivendi Universal Games. The game faded from public consciousness and was later cancelled without anyone noticing (it actually means that the film sequel, 2 Fast 2 Furious, received mixed to negative reviews, and the game has horrible graphics, compared to the similar 2003 street racing game and critically acclaimed Need for Speed: Underground. In 2006, a different game based on the film series was released for PS2, but it was completely different from the earlier one. (This one was developed by Eutechnyx and published by Namco.)
  • Fear Effect Inferno by Kronos Digital Entertainment, was going to be a PlayStation 2 sequel based on the first game's best ending.
  • Fear and Respect was a wide-open sandbox game set up as a vehicle for Snoop Dogg and was produced by John Singleton that was set to be ready for a 2006 release. But despite having much buzz (such as a cover story in Game Informer and the announcement of a film version that would also feature Snoop Dogg), Midway canceled the game due to a crowded market.
  • Fez was well received when it was released in 2012, so a sequel was a definite...or so we thought. Naturally, a sequel was announced in 2013. A month later, head developer Phil Fish got into an argument on Twitter over Microsoft's policies on self-publishing. After the argument got especially heated, Fish announced that Fez 2 was cancelled and he was retiring from the video game industry.
  • Final Fantasy III was announced for the WonderSwan Color as one of the original three games that would have both a port and a special edition WonderSwan Color. It didn't happen.
  • After its cancellation, Joss Whedon expressed interest in further exploring the universe of Firefly as an MMORPG, and there was even evidence that it was in the works; Penny Arcade even remarked on it ("Everyone just rolls shaman"). There's been little word on the game since 2006, and while developer Dark-Cryo has picked up the pieces of what was developed, they seem to be doing so without authorization from 20th Century Fox or Mutant Enemy.
  • Fireteam Rogue, an Action-Adventure game developed in the mid-1990s for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. Publisher Accolade intended it to be the launch of a major franchise, including a toyline and a TV series. For all its ambitions (Accolade promised over 100 hours of gameplay), and despite being previewed in several magazines, the game was never finished.
  • There were plans for a The Flash game made by BottleRocket and Brash Entertainment. The game was, sadly, cancelled in 2008 when Brash went belly up. With a story written by Marv Wolfman, it would have starred the Barry Allen Flash and had him deal with his famed Rogue's Gallery. In-game footage from the alpha had very obvious nods to Sonic (beyond the running part, there were dash pads and grinding) and the Spider-Man games. It was also highly possible to play as other speedsters from the Flash Family.
    • According to this video, the game initially started out with the idea of having the Flash help out other legendary DC city locations, like Metropolis and Gotham City, but curtailed it back to just Central and Keystone City. Instead, it would focus on the Wally West Flash during the first twelve months of his superheroic career, justifying the need for tutorials and such as Wally would be getting the hang of being the Flash. The Flash would deal with his Rogues Gallery before facing down the ultimate villains of the game, Gorilla Grodd and Professor Zoom. There would also be an online multiplayer mode that would allow players to race against other speedsters with the possibility of even bringing in Superman.
  • Frag Ops, an Unreal Tournament 2004 mod, had a standalone version being developed that was cancelled when the developer was bought out by Epic.
  • Freedom Fighters (2003) had a sequel announced half a year after its release in 2003. Very little has been heard of it since.
  • Back in the early days of Gaia Online, before Houses and Towns, there was an announcement sent out about an MMO they were going to develop, referred to as the Battle System. While details were slim, there were several times during the development where it was announced as an upcoming feature users should be on the watch for. By the time Pinball materialized, a few months before zOMG! finally entered closed beta testing, "When the Battle System is finished" had already become a running gag among the userbase.
  • Gekido was a side-scrolling beat-'em-up released for the original PlayStation in 1999, that received a sequel for the Game Boy Advance titled Gekido Advance: Kintaro's Revenge. A second sequel titled Gekido: The Dark Angel was supposed to come out for PlayStation Portable around 2006 but nothing outside of a teaser was ever shown.
  • George A. Romero's City of the Dead. It showed up at E3 2005 with no playable demo, and was soon canned.
  • Gods & Heroes: Rome Rising was going to be an MMO by Perpetual Entertainment, and was cancelled to focus on Star Trek Online, with the game rights bought by Heatwave Interactive.
  • Gotham By Gaslight by Fracture 1 was going to be a video game adaptation of the very first Elseworlds story of the same name, where a Victorian era Batman battled Jack The Ripper. The game was cancelled in 2010.
  • The Gran Turismo series almost had an entry on the PS2 called Gran Turismo For Boys, an entry directed at younger gamers. (Never mind that the games regularly garner "E for Everybody" ratings from the ESRB.) It was scheduled for release in 2005, around the same time as Gran Turismo 4, but never appeared. When discussing plans for Gran Turismo 5, Kazunori Yamauchi said he was hoping to make GT For Boys a feature within that game. That didn't happen either.
  • A video game based off Gremlins, not the NES game, was pitched at one point. It recreates the town havoc scene in the first movie, and you play Gizmo as you set up traps to stop the other Gremlins. It was turned down, but the guy who pitched it put some previews of what it could've been like.
  • Guitar Hero was going to have a Facebook MMO spinoff, Hero World. It was to be a DJ and club management sim, and was not released.
  • GURPS Online. It's still advertised in the text for GURPS 4th Edition.
    • For that matter, many of the online tools for Dungeons and Dragons 4th Edition (Especially the online game table app) have still not been released, despite advertising that they would be bundled with 4th edition on release in 2008.note 
  • Half-Life 2: Episode 4: Return to Ravenholm was going to be developed by Arkane Studios, which ended up not being released.
  • H2Overdrive was going to be a 2003 game by Crave Entertainment, unrelated to the 2009 game of the same name.
  • Halo Online was going to be a Halo MMO, developed by Ensemble Studios, and was canceled in 2008. Plenty of concept art remains, including an early, alternate take on the Forerunners.
  • Halo: Chronicles by WingNut Interactive would have been an episodic series of games with interactive storytelling. Peter Jackson was going to be involved, but according to him, the project collapsed when the Halo movie was cancelled.
  • Origin Systems Inc. had secured the rights to make a Harry Potter Online in the late 90s, but the project was scrapped. Note that this predated both the movies and the last three books, meaning that it would have been very different from Pottermore.
  • When the licencing for Harry Potter became available, Nintendo actually tried to get it. In an attempt to get the licence, they ended up suspending (and ultimately cancelling) production on Ridge Racer 64, Bionic Commando 64 and Crystalis to do so. There were arguments on if they should either go with the British cover-style artwork or a more Japanese anime-styling. Ultimately, it proved for naught as Warner Brothers got the licence since they also included film and TV.
  • Of particular note is the long promised, but still missing Harvest Moon MMORPG. Online connectivity (read: the ability to buy, sell, and trade items between other players) has also been long promised since Save The Homeland debuted. It finally appeared in limited form in Island Of Happiness via the Nintendo DS' WiFi.
  • Heist or HEI$T, by inXile Entertainment, was going to be about a group of criminals performing thefts in 1969 San Francisco, and was cancelled in 2010.
  • Hero's Journey was going to be a fantasy MMORPG by Simutronics, using the HeroEngine, and was canceled in 2009.
  • A Highlander video game, Highlander: The Game, was being developed by Widescreen Games, and would have starred a new character, Owen MacLeod. The game was cancelled in 2010 by the publisher Square Enix. The game was repeatedly postponed and pushed back until the company making it was sold in 2011 and the new owners ultimately pulled the plug.
  • Highlander: The Gathering, known as Highlander Online, was an MMORPG in development by Kalisto Entertainment around 2001-2002.
  • The second and third parts of the ''Histrionica'' series by TestZero has yet to be released. The first game, The Theater was released in 2008 while the second game, The Masquerade has had a tentative release date for 2011, but that year has long since passed.
  • Homestar Runner RPG was going to be an RPG running on the Atari 2600, was announced in 2006, and was cancelled in 2008.
  • A video game adaptation of The Host was announced in the early 2010s, but nothing came of it; the film's sequel and American remake suffered the same fate.
  • Ignac, an animated Point-and-Click freeware adventure, was going to have a sequel Ignac 2, and to be adapted into an animated series called "Ignatz"; however, it remains to be seen whether these plans will ever come to fruition.
  • Imperator Online, by Mythic Entertainment, was going to be a sci-fi MMO where Roman and Mayan civilizations developed space travel, and was canceled in 2005.
  • The graphic adventure Indiana Jones and the Iron Phoenix, a sequel to Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis, was never produced except for a comic book tie-in. One reason for its cancellation was the worry that a No Swastikas version could not be produced for Germany, as the plot involved Nazis using the Philosopher's Stone to resurrect Hitler.
  • Infinity: The Quest for Earth, an indie space combat/trading MMO was continuously in development for nine years, with the "expected release" generally a year to two years ahead of the date at the time. The game appeared to be caught in the development hell of constantly trying to stay up-to-date for years; the development newsfeed was composed almost entirely of graphical changes. The game was later canceled and its engine (I-Novae) offered for licensing with a much more reasonably sized game, Infinity: Battlescape on the horizon.
  • The adventure game Inherit the Earth ends with the note "To be continued", as it was planned as the start of a trilogy. Two Kickstarter campaigns were made for the second game in 2013 and 2014, both of them unsuccessful. The developers are currently trying to make the second game, Inherit the Earth: Sand and Shadows with help from Patreon.
  • inSANE was a Survival Horror game made by Volition and Guillermo del Toro that was announced at the Spike Video Game Awards in 2010, with an intended release date in 2013 and plans for a whole trilogy. Unfortunately, its publisher, THQ, was falling apart at the time, and in 2012 they canceled the game, with the IP rights going to del Toro; they ultimately went bankrupt four months later, and were dissolved the following year. Given del Toro's subsequent work on Silent Hills (which met the same fate), it's unlikely that the game will ever be finished.

    Video Game Titles: J-M 
  • The Jane's Combat Simulations series was going to have Jane's A-10 by Origin Systems.
  • Jet Moto 4 for the PS2, which was semi-officially announced, but never started, probably due to poor sales of Jet Moto 3 (which came out in the PS1's dying days).
  • A Jurassic World game by Cryptic Studios North was going to be a third person action game running on Unreal Engine 4, for Steam, Xbox Live and PSN, with the Velociraptor trainer Owen Grady as a playable character.
  • A cancelled Justice League fighting game by Double Helix was planned as an Xbox 360 tie-in to George Miller's cancelled Justice League movie.
  • Kid Icarus:
    • An issue of Nintendo Power revealed to readers a Super Kid Icarus title coming to the SNES. Never mentioned again and no photos or footage exists.
    • Icarus was going to be a game for the Wii made by Factor 5, the creators of the Rogue Squadron game series. The game would have followed an older Pit who could fly without aid. The game would have been more mature, with Pit's design reflecting that. Nintendo rejected it since they felt the game was too much of a departure from the series, and even former Factor 5 developers felt they were missing the point.
  • Kill Bill was to have a game by Black Label Games, for PlayStation 2 and Xbox. It was cancelled in 2003.
  • There were plans for making video games of Kimba the White Lion, one for the Nintendo Entertainment System and another for the Nintendo 64, but both attempts ended up as vaporware.
  • A video game adaptation of Killing Bites was announced in September 2015 for a 2016 release on PS4 and PS Vita, with Nex Entertainment as the publisher. However, Nex shut down in 2016, so Fields, a company known more for pachinko machines than video games, picked it up. In September 2017, Fields announced that development of the game had been called off, and future plans for it were uncertain.
  • Killing Day was a game announced by Ubisoft for the PS3 and Xbox 360, and ended up being cancelled in 2005.
  • Both attempts to make a video game for Kimba the White Lion were eventually canceled.
  • Kirby:
    • One particularly well-known example is a Kirby 2.5D platformer for GameCube, which featured four player co-op and the Helper system from Kirby Super Star. After being revealed in late 2004 and prominently shown off at E3 2005, it faded away with a "TBA" release date before eventually being scrapped altogether. An Iwata Asks interview revealed that this was the first of three attempts at a Kirby game with 3D graphics; the other two were a fully 3D game that fell through due to being too complicated, and a storybook-styled 2.5D game with Copy Abilities that could be powered up. Eventually, development was restarted one last time and resulted in 2011's Kirby's Return to Dream Land, which combined elements from these three "lost games". 2018's Kirby Star Allies would also properly reintroduce the Helper system.
    • A Spinoff Babies Kirby game with the working title of "Kid Kirby" was planned for release on the SNES, developed by DMA Design (who had earlier collaborated with Nintendo on Uniracers). It had CGI-rendered sprites, a la Donkey Kong Country, and would have featured Kirby as a curly-haired (!) baby and King Dedede as a young child. For one reason or another, it never got beyond a few promotional renders and level layouts.
  • Kumite, a 3D Fighting Game featuring Motion Capture of martial artists and realistic damage modeling, would have been published by Konami for the PlayStation and Sega Saturn. The game design proved too ambitious for its small third-party developer, a company known as 47-TEK, to bring anywhere near to completion.
  • The Legacy of Kain series has had a long history of finessing out of development and legal complications. However, its admirable run ended tragically with the cancellation of the sixth installment, to be titled Legacy of Kain: Dark Prophecy or Dead Sun, after only three months in development. Only some concept art remains as evidence of its existence before evaporation. The game was intended to tie up all the loose ends from the series. Unfortunately: 1. Amy Hennig, the lead writer of the series, left Crystal Dynamics. 2. The person Hennig left in charge died before someone else could be chosen. 3. Crystal Dynamics was given the Tomb Raider series. And the first LoK sequel, Soul Reaver, was originally intended to have a different conclusion, rather than a cliffhanger. This is evident in a number of sound files on the disc of the PlayStation version of the game relating to an actual death of Kain followed by the apparent use of a giant cathedral organ to destroy all of the remaining vampires in Nosgoth. Afterward, though, he would've learnt that the Elder God was evil all along and this ending would lead into a different version of Soul Reaver 2. Also the concept of Wraith Blade being Raziel's soul was there from the start, but not to be realized in any version of Soul Reaver.
  • The Legend of el Lobodestroyo Vs. la Liga de los Villanos (originally just titled Lobodestroyo) is a 3D platformer announced in 2013 for the Wii U. It stars a Funny Animal luchador wolf and is based on classic 3D platformers like Banjo-Kazooie and Spyro the Dragon. Not much has been shown off besides a few test animations and music, however it's still in development as of 2016. The developers are doing it in their free time for no profit, so the game's development is taking a long time.
  • Traveler's Tales had planned a few other LEGO games. First was an attempt to make a LEGO James Bond series. However, while the various rights holders were on board with the idea, the release of Casino Royale (2006) scuttled that idea as they realized the Bond franchise was going into a darker angle. They also attempted a LEGO Tomb Raider game, but when they felt the franchise couldn't hold itself up by itself, they attempted to have her as a guest star in LEGO Indiana Jones. When Lucasarts learned of Lara and that she was a ripoff of Indiana, they furiously refused to let them do so.
  • Lejendary Adventure Online, or Lejendary Adventure, was going to be an MMO based on Gary Gygax's other RPG. The game was in development in 2002, with no word given on its cancellation.
  • Lily Bergamo was announced in 2013 as a "super action game" by Suda51, featuring artwork by Yusuke Kozaki. One trailer was released before the game re-surfaced in 2014 as Let It Die, which is... very different than the initial product.
  • Line's End, the sequel to the freeware RPG, A Blurred Line, has been eluding expectations of a conclusion to A Blurred Line's engrossing story for several years. The creator seems to have abandoned it in favor of a career in law. While he promised to finish it in August 2010, as of 2014 though, nothing further has been heard so it's looking very unlikely that this game will ever be finished.
  • LittleBigPlanet HUB, a free-to-play installment in the LittleBigPlanet series, was announced back in 2013. Whenever Steven Isbell was asked about it, he responded that the team was working on the DC Comics DLC (in 2013) or LittleBigPlanet 3 (in 2014) or that there was just no new info. Content from that game later appeared in LBP3's Seaside Surprise DLC in 2016, and the Challenges feature that was set to make an appearance in HUB was added to LBP3 in an update, making it highly unlikely that the game is still a thing.
  • LMNO by Arkane Studios was going to be a first person parkour game with adventure and RPG elements, with the involvement of Steven Spielberg, and was cancelled in 2010.
  • Lobo, a fighting game based on the DC Comics character, for the SNES and Sega Genesis. Very little info was released before it was cancelled. A prototype was eventually found and a ROM dumped.
    • Kemco also announced a Lobo game for the Xbox. That was it. No screenshots were ever released and Kemco eventually announced it was cancelled with no work whatsoever having been done on the game.
  • A sandbox PC game called Loose Cannon, developed by Sinister Games, was supposed to come out in 2002. The main character in the game would have had the freedom to explore a detailed city, take missions and drive vehicles. Sounds familiar? This game was canned too.
  • The Lost by Irrational Games and FXLabs was going to be a third person shooter survival horror game to be released on PlayStation 2 and Xbox, and was instead released on PC in India as Agni: Queen of Darkness with redone art.
  • Love Despite was going to be another spiritual successor to Katawa Shoujo (see Missing Stars down below) that began development in January 2012, immediately after Katawa Shoujo's release. However, development news were very scarce, despite the creators setting up a very elaborate website (archived link). That site was made to look like the official web page of the fictional academy the game was going to be set in. However, it stopped updating in 2014, the project was cancelled a little later, and in 2016 that page was turned into a general web page for the dev team, renamed Unfinished Circle. Even that one, though, stopped any updates after the very first post, leaving all the team's projects unfinished.
  • The Yandere Simulator fan-game Love Letter: My True Feelings started off with high anticipation by the former game's disgruntled fanbase, as while its inspiration had been in development for 6 years with no end in sight, Love Letter was billed as having been developed in 2 weeks. Trouble began to brew when the main artist for the game Shortcake left the team due to infighting, taking all of their character designs with them. The final nail in the coffin came when allegations of child grooming were made against project leader DrApeis. The game was cancelled on September 23rd 2020; it never even saw a demo release.
  • LucasArts Team Three studio came up with ideas for five or six Nintendo DS games, including an animal-based platformer, a photo-examining detective game, and Caveland, a downloadable shooting game.
  • The PS1 of port of Madden NFL '96 was going to be Madden's first foray into the 32-bit era, but Electronic Arts canceled the game because it wasn't up to their quality of publishing standards. Knowing EA's reputation for rushing out yearly installments and not caring about the final product as long it sells well; when they say a game is unworthy of being published, you know something is really wrong. The main problem is that it suffered a same fate as Jurassic Park: Trespasser, it was just too ambitious for the technology at time. The game was heavily hyped by Sony and judging by the pre-release images, it looked great, until it was later revealed that EA ''doctored'' the images. More info can be found here and you can read about all the problems it went through, see pictures, and watch videos on the prototype.
  • Mad Max:
    • The SNES/Genesis game Outlander, by Mindscape, was going to be based on The Road Warrior, until Mindscape lost the Mad Max license.
    • The developer Melbourne House cancelled an N64 port and planned sequel to DethKarz, and began working on Mad Max: Asylum, a game set years after Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome, but Melbourne House was denied the Mad Max license.
  • An example which specifically starts out meta and goes on from there, in-universe: The Magic Circle is a game about the titular game, 'The Magic Circle', which has been in development for so long, and gone through so many iterations and changes, all while being constantly hyped, that the game itself starts to rebel against its creators.
  • After Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects, EA Chicago began work on a new fighting game tentatively titled Marvel or Marvel Chaos. The game would have had fully-interactive open world environments that could be damaged, with Spider-Man, The Incredible Hulk, Wolverine, Captain America, Doctor Doom, Phoenix, Thor and the Juggernaut planned as playable combatants. The voice cast would have included David Faustino as Spider-Man, Gregg Henry as Wolverine and Steve Blum as Captain America. Marvel was cancelled after EA closed its Chicago division and ended its license with Marvel Entertainment.
  • Marvel 2099: One Nation Under Doom was an action platformer that would've been released on Windows PC and the PlayStation, with Spider-Man 2099, The Punisher 2099, Hulk 2099, and various members of the X-Men 2099 planned as playable characters.
  • Meantime was going to be a Spiritual Successor to Wasteland, involving time travel, with the player travelling forwards and backwards in time, and meeting historical characters.
  • The MechWarrior series has held many games locked in development hell.
    • MechWarrior Tactics Another "free to play", though given its Closed Beta status, requiring either winning a free Beta key via Lottery pick, or paying money for a founders package for instant access, it was an Allegedly Free Game, from Infinite Games Publishing (who published Online with Piranha Games as Developers). They assigned it to 3 different development teams. (Roadhouse Interactive, ACRONYM Games, who both worked together, then were sacked, replaced with Blue Lizard games). All news for the game ended in January of the 2014, with the beta stagnating. Then the game, and website went down on August 18th, 2014, citing Extended server maintenance and hardware upgrades, which lasted more than the listed time frame of 72 hours. Questions began being asked, and it was found out that Blue Lizard Games had also left quietly from making the game back in December of 2013. A month later, in September 2014 after the game went down, IGP finally replied admitting the truth everyone already knew about there being no developers, while at the same time, now informing everyone the game had no servers now to run it. Despite the fact that fans had pieced together the fact that IGP was looking to close its doors for good, what with its CEO leaving to start video game consulting firm and that 90% of IGP had been fired, let go, or quit, they insisted that Tactics was "Still in development" and that they were looking to get a 4th development team, and new servers to continue the project as an excuse as to why they wouldn't refund angered customers money they spent for founders packages or on the C-bill premium transaction store during Beta, (also claiming that the "money had already been spent" despite failing to deliver on their end). On November 26th, the final truth has come out, as both Infinite Games Publishings website, and MechWarrior Tactic's website were both quietly shutdown, with still zero updates on either Facebook pages, and a sale of remaining assets was posted online. The game was supposed to be launched in 2012, according to IGP's own marketing, even claiming it had already been a successful launch on its website.
      • The issue with MW Tactics left fans so disgusted, that when Harebrained Schemesnote  launched their Kickstarter campaign for BattleTech, they felt the need to apologize to fans of BattleTech and MechWarrior for the sheer incompetence and lies of Infinite Games Publishing, despite the fact that they had nothing to do with Infinite Games or MW Tactics.
    • Multiplayer BattleTech 3025, PC MMORPG by Kesmai. It received glowing praise from players during its beta test, but the company was acquired by Electronic Arts before release and subject to massive Executive Meddling. The game went back to the drawing board, and its servers were shut down in 2001.
  • Mega Man:
    • Mega Man Anniversary Collection for the Game Boy Advance would have collected MM's five original Game Boy adventures. One speculation was that creator Capcom had lost the source code for the original games. Eventually, Capcom declared it too expensive to produce, and that the GBA was in decline anyway.
    • Mega Man Legends 3 wound up being unceremoniously cancelled in July 2011, after a promising start from positive fan reception, eventually culminating in Capcom's own disappointment in the project, without even releasing the prototype/prologue that was supposed to be used to judge whether the final game would sell.
    • Mega Man Universe was another Mega Man title cancelled around the same time as Mega Man Legends 3. It would have been a 2D sidescroller with a level creator in the vein of Mega Man Powered Up, and would have allowed you to customize your Mega Man's appearance as well as play as other characters (i.e. Bad Box Art Mega Man and Ryu from Street Fighter). Capcom cancelled the game citing poor reception from testers.
    • Rockman Online, a Korean Mega Man MMORPG that was announced in 2010. It was ultimately cancelled in 2013 after developer Neowiz underwent internal restructuring.
  • MegaRace: In 2014, ZOOM Platform — the holders of the MegaRace IP — announced a reboot of the franchise. A handful of teasers were released, — including a few with Christian Erickson reprising his role as Lance Boyle, as well teasers for some apparent merch like a Lance Boyle figure, and a replica of the robot servant in the original game's intro — but the last anyone has heard about the project was an announcement for an IndieGoGo campaign in 2015, which also never seemed to materialize.
  • Metal Gear Solid: Rising was first unveiled in E3 2009 as one of two projects that would serve as a follow-up to Metal Gear Solid 4 alongside the PSP game Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker. The goal was to test Kojima Productions' ability to produce a new console Metal Gear entry without creator Hideo Kojima's direction, while Kojima himself would oversee the next portable installment instead. However, the resulting product did not meet the desired expectations and the project ended up being outsourced to PlatinumGames. Their version of the game, titled Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, (which was released in early 2013), ended up being radically different from the initial concept.
  • Ports of the original Metal Slug trilogy for the Game Boy Advance were announced coming off the success of Metal Slug Advance. Despite its near completion of the first game, it was ultimately canned due to memory constraints and the fact that its late release date on the system and the near release Metal Slug Anthology would've made the GBA ports obsolete. Efforts were then shifted to create Metal Slug 7 for the Nintendo DS.
  • Middle Earth Online was being developed in 1998 by Sierra as a 2D or 3D isometric MMO supporting 10,000 players, and a later project in 2001 was being developed as Tolkien Online or Tolkien Online RPG.
  • Midnight in Salem the 32nd Nancy Drew game, has been in development for three years. Prior to this, Her Interactive would release one or two games per year and they have repeatedly announced release dates for Midnight in Salem, only to move it.
  • Might & Magic Online was going to be an MMORPG from the developers of Meridian 59, and was cancelled by the publisher, 3DO.
  • Mighty No. 9 was slated to have 3DS and Vita ports, but as of 2017, there is no word on whether they are still in the works, since practically everyone tied to the ports has been oddly quiet about them.
  • Missing Stars is a freeware original English-language Visual Novel announced in 2012 as a Spiritual Successor to Katawa Shoujo. The project is still a thing as of 2018 however, much like Katawa Shoujo, it has a long and Troubled Production. Its first demo was released in January of 2017 however it was clearly rushed, with several typos and a few interface issues.
  • The Game Boy Advance game Monster Force was originally announced for the PlayStation. The PlayStation version was quietly canceled before the release of the Game Boy Advance version, all that was shown of the former being a trailer and a brief tech demo video.
  • Mythica was going to be a Norse mythology fantasy MMORPG by Microsoft Game Studios, and was cancelled in 2004.
  • Another classic that promised a never-to-appear sequel like the previously mentioned Commander Keen was Infocom's take on The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, potentially called Milliways: The Restaurant at the End of the Universe. Delays, including the development of Bureaucracy (also written by Douglas Adams), meant the game was delayed, with Infocom eventually going bankrupt before the sequel could be made. All that is left to show for it are some of Douglas Adams' notes and a very, very small amount of code with nothing more than a few locations on the surface of Magrathea, only two of which have any description whatsoever. All of the code, what little there is, is playable online here. A complete history (as complete as anyone can make it, anyway) can be found here.
  • Mr. Bill's Neighborhood for the Atari 2600 would had been Mr. Bill's first video game if it was released. Yet, this game was 100% complete and ready to be released but was cancelled due to the publisher, Data Age, couldn't afford to pay the licensing fees after their license game Journey Escape's poor critical reception.
  • Several CD-i games based on the Super Mario Bros. franchise were planned at one point, but only Hotel Mario was ever released. Among the canned titles were Super Mario's Wacky Worlds, a sequel to Super Mario World with stages set in various real-world locations, and Mario Takes America, an FMV game that would feature a Roger Rabbit Effect Mario traveling from New York to Hollywood to film a movie while getting in various state-themed shenanigans along the way.
  • Marvel Universe Online / Marvel Universe, by Cryptic Studios, was a cancelled Marvel MMORPG. Some assets were later used to develop Champions Online.
  • Mercenaries was to have sequels Mercs Inc. and Mercenaries 3: No Limits.
  • Midnight Animal, an approved Fan Sequel to Hotline Miami 2, first underwent an art-shift, and then a genre-shift to Visual Novel called The Story of Love and Forgetting, and then... whatever The Document of Midnight Animal is. You can trace the tech demos and teasers if you know where to look, start with Youtube.
  • Minecraft has been modded by the community basically since it launched, and the developers (Mojang) acknowledged this by committing to developing an official Application Programming Interface for the game. Mojang went as far as recruiting the lead developers of the community-made API Bukkit to lead the project. Within a few months, they established a blog and public Github, and then proceeded to go silent. Neither the blog nor the Github have seen activity in nearly a year; and the Github does not even exist anymore. The devs have made mention of the API on Reddit several times since then, but there's no word on if it's still being actively worked on.
  • On the fraud front comes Mythic: The Story of Gods and Men, an entirely fake game fabricated and promoted with media from other, existing games just to raise funds for the project. Fortunately, it was exposed and the contributed funds returned.
  • MySims Social was to be another social game similar to The Sims Social and SimCity Social.
  • Mythri was an indie RPG by Team XKalibur initially announced for the Gameboy Color in 2000 that first received press when news site RPGamer began covering it and started a campaign to get a publisher for it. Variant Interactive eventually signed on board and the project jumped from the outdated (by 2003) GBC to the then-viable GBA, complete with comparison screenshots of improved graphical engine updates. After two years with absolutely no updates, news eventually trickled out that Variant had dropped the game and Team XKalibur was once more seeking a publisher. The game was finally quietly cancelled. Not long after, the developer was disbanded and the staff scattered across the industry.

    Video Game Titles: N-P 
  • NBA Live 13 was going to be a planned reboot of the series before being cancelled by EA.
  • Necessary Force, an open-world action game set in a dystopian future about a police detective going rogue. It was in development at Midway's England studios at the time of its bankruptcy, and neither the game nor its studio were part of the Midway assets sold to Warner Bros. (save for the studio's Wheelman game). Midway unveiled the game in the hopes of finding a buyer for the studio, but nobody was interested, resulting in the studio being shuttered and everyone working on the game being let go. Not helping matters is that nobody knows who owns the Necessary Force IP or game code because of Midway's liquidation, leaving the game permanently unfinished.
  • Neverwinter Nights 2: In 2009, there was talk of a possible third expansion and another patch for the game, but everything went down the drain when Hasbro (owner of the D&D license) sued Atari (the game's publisher). By the time the dispute was settled everybody had moved on to other games.
  • Nexus: The Jupiter Incident, produced by Mithis and HD Publishing, released way back in 2005, was scheduled to have a Nexus 2 come out later in 2007. That year has long since passed. Many claim that no ship-to-ship space combat sim produced since has ever rivaled it, yet only a crusty layer of dust-caked die-hards can even remember its name. This is probably past vaporware by now... Interestingly, concept video of Nexus 2 was posted to Youtube in 2012. Supposedly the project had been in the works for some time, and in 2012 a small Kickstarter was attempted for the project.
  • Freeware space exploration simulator Noctis IV saw a good (and justified, given how an entire galaxy was squeezed in 700 kilobytes of data) popularity in the early 2000s; the author announced Noctis V, a version with native Windows support, a renewed engine and many more new features and adjustments, around that time. For a while, it completely fell off the radar, and contributions to the NIV starmap weren't even included in the game anymore. Then, support to NIV resumed and its source code was released, but as of July 2009 (when the author once again assured that he hasn't given up on the project), NV still hasn't come out, while the older iteration shows more and more the signs of its age (like complete lack of sound, a very cumbersome interface, and low resolution).
  • Several Oddworld projects were announced and went unreleased: The Brutal Ballad of Fangus Klot, Oddworld: Squeek's Oddysee, Oddworld: Munch's Exoddus, online RTS Oddworld: The Hand of Odd, Oddworld: Slave Circus, Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath 2, SligStorm, and Stranger Arena.
  • Quantic Dream had originally planned on making a sequel to Omikron: The Nomad Soul called Nomad Soul: Exodus. However tensions between Quantic Dream and Eidos forced them to scrap it. A few years later they announced yet another sequel, this time called Omikron 2: Karma. Once again, the project was put on hold so Quantic Dream could focus on Heavy Rain. Given the long developmental cycles their games tend to have, who knows when—or if—Omikron 2 will actually see the light of day.
  • The Outsider, a Wide Open Sandbox espionage game by David Braben's (of Elite fame) Frontier Developments was cancelled in 2011 after a protracted development cycle and being dumped by publisher Codemasters. Interestingly, the game was described as being practically complete apart from QA testing. At the same time Braben's studio was in talks with EA about retooling the game into an adaptation of The Bourne Series since they held the rights at the time. All that exists of the game now are a few trailers and screenshots.
  • A third game in the Perfect Dark series, Perfect Dark Core, was planned and entered development around 2007, but was cancelled in 2008 before even making it past the prototype stage. Even by then the idea had shifted so wildly it wasn't even a Perfect Dark game anymore, centering around a male protagonist fighting Humongous Mecha.
  • The fourth main installment of Pikmin was revealed to be "very close to completion" by Shigeru Miyamoto on September 2015. No details or footage regarding the game have come out ever since, save for Nintendo reconfirming its development in 2017 (with the spinoff title Hey! Pikmin releasing that same year).
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: Armada of the Damned, by Propaganda Games / Disney Interactive Studios, was a cancelled action-adventure role-playing game in an open world with land and sea combat, set before The Curse of the Black Pearl.
  • Planet Michael, a Michael Jackson-based MMORPG, was announced in 2010 for a 2011 release. Nothing's been heard of it since. Even the official website slid to a halt; its latest news blurb was in January 2011.
  • According to this article, the point and click adventure Pleurghburg: Dark Ages, released in 2001, was supposed to have a sequel named Pleurghburg: The Asylum, whose development started in 2003. No other news surfaced besides the fact that it was going to have 3D-rendered backgrounds, the developer's website never showed any substantial updates and, more than a decade later, it disappeared as well.
  • Askiisoft's Police Team Kazuo, supposedly a 2D tactical strategy game that was announced in 2014 and still "coming soon". The official site is empty, Askiisoft's site doesn't mention it and all its social media pages (found here) are similarly void of any content. It's safe to say it has quietly been cancelled.
  • Power Drive 2000 was to be an '80s themed, Synthwave-soundtracked indie racing game funded via Kickstarter, and got as far as an alpha build. However, no word has been heard on the project since Feb 2017, when the developer's last Twitter entry read "Chit-chatting with the lawyers", possibly indicating being Screwed by the Lawyers.
  • Jim Walls who designed Blue Force and the first three entries in the Police Quest series, has tried to make a similar game called Precinct but its Kickstarter campaign was unsuccessful.
  • The original DOS release of Princess Maker 2 was planned for a western release by a development company called Softegg and a publisher called Intracorp. Unfortunately, delays, Intracorp's dissolution, the growing obsolecense of MS-DOS, and the dominance of first-person shooters on PC lead to the localization never being released. An English beta of the game leaked onto the internet in the 2010s, although Softegg maintained that they still owned the rights to the localization and asked players not to pirate the beta. Eventually, the near entirety of the Princess Maker series would finally be released in the west via Steam by CFK, starting with the Windows port of Princess Maker 2 in 2016.
  • Project Goliath was an attempted pitch to Junction Point, owned by Disney. It would have been the studio's first IP with original characters, a gorilla named Tarek and a girl named Ky in a Jak and Daxter-style 3D platformer where they battle cyborg monsters led by an alien Mad Scientist in an attempt to escape his island. With some inspiration from Shadow of the Colossus, the game was meant to focus on themes like family, where Ky ran away from her family due to not getting along and the alien Big Bad was revealed to be a Tragic Villain, he was the Last of His Kind and creating an army of cyborgs to take revenge on the aliens who wiped out his people and his family. Due to the success of Epic Mickey, Junction Point was put to make the sequel right away. Sadly, the sequel wasn't the hit they hoped for and, despite Junction Point's willingness to keep working, was shut down. Though the studio was closed, the team could always pitch to another studio or just keep it as something for work experience. Unfortunately, even this couldn't happen, as one of the artists, a college student, was revealed to have plagiarized much of the art for the game. Thus the designers couldn't even keep the game in their résumés.
  • Project H.A.M.M.E.R. (or its apparent working title "Machinex") was a game teased by Nintendo Software Technology in Redmond Washington for several years. The game was being developed for the Wii, about a hammer wielding android named "M-09" who smashes his way through an army of robots led by a terrorist organization, the same that originally created him. Notably dark for a Nintendo game, it met a plethora of problems, from arguments between Western and Eastern developers, to the gameplay not being fun, to the poor decision of spending most of its budget on CGI cutscenes. Many who worked on the game have little nice things to say, criticizing the plot, dialogue and the main character, who one developer described "part man, part machine, all mediocre". There was a redesign to make it a cuter, more casual game called "Wii Crush", but the gameplay still didn't improve enough. The game ultimately ended production and is the reason NST no longer makes large scale games.
  • Propeller Arena: Aviation Battle Championship/Propeller Head Online by Sega AM2, for the Dreamcast. It was a World War II airplane combat game with multiplayer deathmatch, and a Spiritual Successor to Wing Arms. The game was actually fully completed and was just about to release when the tragic terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 caused the game to be swiftly canceled. It didn't help that the game contained a stage where the planes did battle in a city that resembled modern day New York. The game wasn't lost however, for a bootable disk image of it later got leaked onto the internet and it can be played in its entirety on both an emulator and an actual Dreamcast console by burning the image to a CD.
  • Psi-Ops: The Mindgate Conspiracy ended in the middle of a cutscene. A planned sequel was never announced due to a lawsuit suggesting the concept was stolen. Midway won but, by then, it was in great financial trouble, ultimately going into bankruptcy and the current liquidation. It looks like Psi-Ops 2 is never going to see the light of day. Also, the game was going to have a GameCube port, titled ESPionage, that was cancelled.

    Video Game Titles: Q-S 
  • Rail Wars! was supposed to get a video game adaptation on the PS Vita soon after the Anime version aired in the summer of 2014. However, the anime tanked, and the project quickly derailed.
  • In 2005 the Ratchet & Clank series would receive its first mobile game in the form of Ratchet & Clank: Going Mobile!. A sequel, titled Clone Home, was revealed in June 2006 and was set to be released on September 1st of the same year. The game would've taken place immediately after its predecessor's cliffhanger ending and was to involve the duo miniaturizing themselves and fighting clones, however it was then abruptly cancelled with no reason being given as to why. In the years since, fans have speculated that the game was cancelled due to being too similar to the PSP installment Size Matters and some have even stated the game did get released in certain territories before being taken down, neither of which has ever been proven.
  • Resident Evil 2 was intended to be released during the spring of 1997, but ended up being revamped from scratch after the designers were unsatisfied with the nearly finished build of their first version (now dubbed Resident Evil 1.5), delaying the game by a whole year. The original version (1.5) had Leon S. Kennedy as the main male protagonist like in the released version, but instead of Claire Redfield, 1.5 had Elza Walker, a college student/motorcyclist with no relation to Chris Redfield (from the first game) or any other previously existing character. The police station the game was set in looked more like a regular office building in 1.5 than the art museum-like design of 2. A group that had gotten hold of an early build has since compiled a playable ISO image of 1.5 that can be found online. It's buggy as hell and not even close to a complete game, but sure to please those who've been itching to try 1.5 ever since news first broke that it was canned.
    • The original Nintendo 64 version of Resident Evil 0 was also scrapped halfway through development after it was shown off at TGS and E3 in 2000, so that the game could be developed on Nintendo's succeeding console the GameCube. Unlike 1.5, the basic plot of the game remained the same in the finished version and the changes were primarily visuals, as Capcom upgraded the graphics to bring in more in-like with the Resident Evil remake that was being developed at the same time.
    • The Game Boy Color port of Resident Evil was canned at about 90% completion. Two ROM images were eventually released online, and even though both are unfinished, it's possible to play through almost the whole game between the two beta images. The UK's official Nintendo magazine actually ran a review for the Game Boy Color port of the original Resident Evil, as it was canned so close to release that it was by all accounts actually finished. Resident Evil Gaiden was launched as a replacement, and the RE1 port languished in oblivion until a prototype was finally discovered and ROM-dumped in 2012. Gaiden's ending showed that Leon was the parasite B.O.W., which implied that the real Leon was either missing or dead. Naturally, the game is considered non-canon for various reasons, one of them being Leon appearing to be alive and well in future games.
  • The Ringworld adventure games Ringworld: Revenge of the Patriarch and Return to Ringworld were to be followed by a third game, Ringworld: Within ARM's Reach.
  • Robotech: Crystal Dreams, a space fighter simulator for the N64, slipped into vaporware oblivion when its developer, Gametek, went belly-up. Only a ROM of the demo version exists. The game would have been localized in Japan as The Super Dimension Fortress Macross: Another Dimension. Antarctic Press also published a tie-in comic.
  • Rochard's creators, Recoil Games, began work on a sequel, but were forced to shelve it due to lack of funding. By all indications, the company has ceased operations altogether.
  • This appears to what has happened to Rock Band Japan. In June 2008, Harmonix said they were codeveloping the game with Q Entertainment for Japanese release, featuring popular Japanese artists. The next time it was brought up was to announce its cancellation.
  • An Xbox and Playstation 2 version of Rocket Power Zero Gravity Zone was in production, but it was canned in 2003 for unknown reasons. Vision Scape Interactive tried to salvage the product by revamping it, including pitching a Sonic the Hedgehog version called Sonic Extreme to Sega, and it was ultimately revamped into the PC game Bare Knuckle Grind.
  • Rune Conquest by Red Dragon Software. The ultimate MMO, or some kid and his dad extracting $50 from people with nothing to show for it?
  • While Star Wars: The Old Republic was still in the planning stages, EA had contingencies in case they couldn't secure the Star Wars license. If they couldn't get Star Wars, EA would have then went on to make a The Lord of the Rings MMO along with a Silmarillion MMO. There were even plans for A Game of Thrones MMO.
  • S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2. A full sequel to the first game S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl, was announced in 2010. Not much is known what it would have, as in early 2012 it was put on "indefinite hold" as GSC was forced to close down due to massive financial issues. GSC has since reopened and in May 16th, 2018 they announced that the game was back in development and intended to release it around 2021.
  • Sadness for the Wii was announced so long ago that Nintendo's machine was still called the Revolution at that point. During "development" of the game, Nibris came under heavy criticism for not producing any evidence of any development, no images, demos, gameplay trailers, etc. All Nibris has to show for it is some concept artwork and broken promises. In the end, Nibris stopped develping games.
    • Someone who was working on Sadness revealed many years later that production was extremely troublesome and that the only things completed were the script, concept art and one in-game object, a minecart. In 2014, Hull Breach Studios and Cthulhi Games had plans to develop the game (as a 2D Wii U release) and even announced the project on their website, but not long afterwards, it was said that the rights for Sadness are, confusingly, either not for sale or in a bidding war, and that there are 4 companies competing for the rights of the IP. The game seemed promising, and since Nibris was terribly incompetent with the development of the game, it would be better for another company to make it anyway. There is a possibility of the game surfacing after more than a decade, but who knows if that will actually happen. There is also a chance of it being different from the original concept; like mentioned above, they wanted to change the graphics to 2D.
  • Saints Row:
    • The series designer was working on a Wii U open world game that was cancelled.
    • Preceding that was Saints Row Undercover (or Saints Row: The Fall), a sequel to Saints Row 2 for the PSP. It was canceled in 2009, but an (incredibly glitchy) test ISO was released for download by Volition in 2015.
    • Saints Row: Money Shot was a rail shooter tie-in to Saints Row: The Third, for Xbox 360 and PS3 but also, interestingly, the 3DS. It entered Development Hell in 2011 when THQ closed its studio in Phoenix; later it was announced that the game would be free-to-play on the Playstation Network, but nothing has come of that (and probably never will as THQ has been bankrupt since 2013). A mostly-complete version of the game has been leaked, but the full game will never see the light of day.
  • Sabre Man: Mire Mare was going to be the next game. It was alluded to in the last three games.
  • In 2004, there was supposed to be a 3D sequel to the popular PC game Sam & Max Hit the Road, titled simply Sam & Max: Freelance Police!!. However, LucasArts cancelled the game, stating that "no one would be interested in the project", in spite of the game having finished development and received a rating by the ESRB, and laid off much of the company’s creative division. This would lead to the creation of Telltale Games by ex-LucasArts employees, who made the episodic Sam & Max: Freelance Police games, and the would-be game would be referenced as probably one of the ultimate Noodle Incidents.
    • Sam & Max Plunge Through Space would've been an action game rather than a point-and-click adventure, and was going to be released for Xbox. The developing company went under about six months later, and so they pulled the plug on the project. To this very day, not much is known about the project.
  • Al Lowe mentioned in 2006 that he had spent a year secretly working on a new game called Sam Suede: Undercover Exposure. The game was apparently canceled since the company making the game was unable to locate a publisher to promote and distribute the game.
  • Sammy vs. Capcom was a potential crossover with Sammy Corporation, described as Street Fighter with the look of Guilty Gear.
  • Vision Scape Interactive produced a prototype for a Samurai Jack Licensed Game, but it was cancelled early on.
  • Nintendo was in talks with Sega to port Seaman to the Nintendo 3DS in 2012, but nothing ever came of it.
  • Seed, by Runestone Game Development, was a cel-shaded, "role play-centric" sci-fi MMO, set in a terraforming colony, focusing on cooperative projects, politics and crafting. It was cancelled in 2006 shortly after beta.
  • Seiken Densetsu: The Emergence of Excalibur was a Famicom Disk System title that was planned to span five disks. What makes this entry so bizarre is that pre-orders were placed before one line of code could be typed because of a clever marketing campaign that involved very convincing-looking mock-ups. It was apparently unrelated to the later World of Mana games except for the title. More info here on that game and the planned fourth Final Fantasy game for the Famicom that was canceled to focus development on the Super Famicom sequel that became Final Fantasy IV.
  • After severing ties with Banpresto, Winkysoft, developers of Super Robot Wars Gaiden, created a similar game called Seireiki Rayblade. In 2001 they announced a sequel... Which hasn't come out yet, despite the official site being updated every few years. With the release of Duke Nukem Forever, it held the dubious honor of being the oldest unabandoned videogame project until 2015, when Winkysoft filed for bankruptcy, making it very unlikely it will see the light of day.
  • Senran Kagura 7even was teased at the end of 2017's "Senran Kagura Peach Beach Splash." As of writing this in February 2021, no news has come to the surface. Constant Executive Meddling from Sony lead series creator Kenichiro Tataki to leave Marvelous in 2019 leading to the title being stuck in limbo. While Takaki has said he would like to come back to the series at some point, nothing has changed 7even's status. It's clear Marvelous hasn't forgotten about the series though, as several Senran Kagura characters appeared as DLC in Kandagawa Jet Girls and Yumi appeared in BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle.
  • There was a sequel planned for the Macintosh First-Person Shooter Sensory Overload (which came out about the same time as Doom), but development apparently never commenced.
  • Shadowgate Rising was fairly close to complete as another Nintendo 64 installment in the franchise, but the GameCube's imminent release coupled with the middling reception Shadowgate 64 had garnered both combined to seal its fate.
  • Shadow of Atlantis, first in development for the Sega CD and later for the 32X, was ultimately canceled in 1997.
  • After he left Silicon Knights, Denis Dyack, who previously worked on Eternal Darkness and Too Human, has tried to develop Shadow of the Eternals but it was unsuccessful on Kickstarter twice. And it doesn't look like were getting sequels to Eternal Darkness and Too Human either despite his attempts.
  • Shadow Realms was originally going to be a 4 versus 1 multiplayer action RPG by BioWare Austin.
  • Development of Shard, a co-op puzzle game by Roger Morash (lead coder of Amplitude 2016), came to a sudden halt after he and his wife suddenly passed away in January 2017. In April 2017, his collaborators announced their decision to continue Morash's work, but it is too soon to say what Shard's future holds.
  • Shenmue:
    • In several gaming magazines, it was mentioned that the story for Shenmue would be spanning a total of 25 games, one for each year Ryo would have spent on his quest for revenge. Yowza. This was condensed down into 25 chapters, with each game having multiple chapters (for instance, the first game was chapter 1, the second game had chapters 3-5, the 2nd chapter being an unshown part between the two games). The third game was released in 2019 and series creator Yu Suzuki has stated that he hopes to make a fourth game, but is unknown when it would be released.
    • It was also going to be a Sega Saturn game at first; Ryo has a Saturn in his house as a Shout-Out to this, despite the game being set about a decade before the Saturn existed.
    • It was also originally going to be a game set in the Virtua Fighter universe, with Akira Yuki as the main character.
    • A Shenmue Online MMORPG was planned, but the game appears to have been cancelled, with no mention of it even as a third mainline game was able to be created almost two decades later.
  • Shogo: Mobile Armor Division had two Expansion Packs, Shugotenshi and Legacy of the Fallen, neither of which was released due to a sudden drop in sales the month after the main game's release (traditionally blamed on the release of Half-Life 1). Rumors of a sequel were substantiated by a tech demo of a new version of the LithTech Game Engine with images labeled "Shogo 2"; unfortunately, LithTech 3.0 turned out to be too buggy to be used in any released game.
  • Silent Hills, a hotly anticipated sequel run by a dream team of Hideo Kojima and Guillermo del Toro, was cancelled following Kojima's departure from Konami. This is one of the biggest What Ifs in video games to date, thanks to the massive amount of hype surrounding the project. Silent Hills was a planned Silent Hill game made by the Dream Team of Hideo Kojima and Guillermo del Toro, with Norman Reedus voicing the protagonist and Junji Ito working as the main artist. It first emerged in late 2014, when an extremely well-received "proof of concept" demo called P.T. put the game on the radars of every Survival Horror fan... only for it to become the most high-profile casualty of the acrimonious breakup between Kojima and publisher Konami in 2015. Not only was the game canceled, but the P.T. demo was pulled from the PlayStation Store. del Toro (who had been burned before with inSANE, which is described above), Reedus, and gamers alike bemoaned the game's sudden death. After his contract with Konami ended, Kojima reformed his studio as an independent company and would announce a new game for Sony, Death Stranding, featuring del Toro (likeness only) and Mads Mikkelsen, much to the excitement of fans.
  • Maxis Software (creator of SimCity) has had a few. First, prior to 1998, SimCity 3000 was to be in full 3D. Then, when Electronic Arts acquired them, they put an end to developing non-Sim products (this included employee personal projects, a sports brand, and much more). Finally, even after the acquisition, two other games, SimMars and SimsVille were scrapped.
  • SimCity was going to be released on the NES, though with the pending release of the SNES development of the port was moved to that console instead.
  • A sixth game in the Simon the Sorcerer series was announced in 2014 by StoryBeasts, but development of the game was halted due to funding and publisher difficulties.
  • Six Days in Fallujah was announced in 2009 and was going to be released by Konami, and be based on the Second Battle of Fallujah which took place in Iraq 2004, but it got cancelled. But then in 2021 development got announced again, with new gameplay footage shown.
  • A sequel to Skies of Arcadia has occasionally been hinted at, but with no media to back it up. It's also been rumored that they were going to make a sequel at one point, but cancelled it for the GameCube remake instead. Also of note is that said remake, Legends, was slated for a PS2 and PC port as well, but both were cancelled for unstated reasons.
  • SlipStream GX was a Wipeout-inspired racing game that started life on franchise fan website WipEoutZone in 2010, set in the Time Skip between Fusion and Pure in the series. Some demos were released over the years, but the project's forum on WipEoutZone has been quiet since 2019.
  • For The Smurfs franchise, there was a Smurfs educational game called Smurf Play & Learn advertised by Coleco that would have been released for the ColecoVision, as well as Smurfette's Birthday and Papa Smurf's Treasure Hunt, none of which were ever worked on.
  • A follow-up to Spider-Man: Web of Shadows called Spider-Man Classic was planned, with players able to control Spidey or Wolverine as they battled against villains like Carnage and Mysterio. The project was cancelled when Shaba Games went bankrupt.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood ended on a cliffhanger Sequel Hook. The division of BioWare responsible for handheld games was later shut down with no announcement, and nothing has been heard of Chronicles 2 in years. Many assume this is due to the lawsuit towards EA and Sega by Ken Penders, former head writer of Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics)
    • Sonic X-treme is a notorious example of Vaporware meets Finagle's Law: thanks to an overdose of Executive Meddling, a massive drop in employees, the director's failing health, and the failing popularity of the Sega Saturn (which the game was to be released on), X-Treme never made it out. Although game content such as music and level design as well as game engine builds of the game have been publicly released, it's highly unlikely the game in its entire form will ever see the light of day. It wasn't a complete loss, however, since many of its design ideas were unintentionally reused in Sonic Lost World.
  • South Park for the Xbox was cancelled in 2005.
  • There was going to be a South Park platformer for the Game Boy Color. A "Coming Soon" section in a Nintendo Power magazine depicted a screenshot from it. The game even got an ESRB rating, but the project was canned because Nintendo knew that there were more kids with Game Boys than teens or adults, and they feared that children would be getting their hands on it. The game wasn't a complete waste, though: the South Park references were removed, and replaced with more kid-friendly licenses, leading to one game becoming two: Maya the Bee and Mary Kate And Ashley Get A Clue. It has been said that Matt Stone and Trey Parker keep a cartridge of the South Park version of this game, though.
  • Sovereign was going to be a 2001 sci-fi persistent world MMORTS by Verant/SOE, cancelled in 2003. The game was planned to have player run planets with trading, diplomacy, and 15 to 500 player battles.
  • Space Agency was an action RPG originally planned for the Nintendo DS by Audio, Inc. that was announced back in 2009. Sadly, the developers couldn't find any publisher for the project, most likely to the fact that Audio Inc.'s previous games, Sakura Note and Contact, sold very poorly.
  • SpongeBob Gravjet Blast was a Nicktoons racing game that was going to be released on the Xbox Live Arcade. The game was an F-Zero / Wipeout clone that featured Nicktoons characters like SpongeBob, Ren and Stimpy, Jenny Wakeman, and Fanboy and Chum Chum. The game was cancelled due to budget constraints.
  • SpaceVenture is a video game in development by the "Two Guys from Andromeda" and it seems like a Spiritual Successor to their previous Space Quest series. The Kickstarter campaign for the game ran in 2012 was successful and the game entered beta testing in 2020 but it is unknown when the game will be released.
  • Stage Debut was a cancelled first party Nintendo Gamecube title from 2004 that was announced in 2002. Stage Debut was a wacky game featuring characters from various Nintendo IP, such as Animal Crossing, Pikmin, and Super Mario Bros, crossing over together. It was a Spiritual Successor to Mario Artist: Talent Studio and had similarly low poly graphics. The game was played using a peripheral for the GBA called the "Game Eye" (which was an ultimately never released successor to the Game Boy Camera) where you would take pictures of your face and put them into the game. The game also took advantage of the GBA's E-reader where, upon scanning Animal Crossing cards into the game, that villager would appear in the game (it's also speculated the Mario Party and Pikmin cards would have also been used). Stage Debut never came out but it was an inspiration for the Mii's and it does look a lot like the Tomodachi series.
  • Ladies and gentlemen, STALKER: Oblivion Lost, circa 2001. It didn't have the Chernobyl setting until a year later. There was other stuff that endured, and got implemented in development as far as 2006, but got cut in the released game, like vehicles (likely cut due to the overpresence of anomalies) and the ability for allied NPCs to beat the game by themselves. For curious fans, GSC Game World has released the 2004 beta build for free download.
  • A PlayStation installment in the Star Control franchise, simply known as StarCon, was announced and made it to the prototype stages, but no further than that. See it here.
  • StarCraft: Ghost, a stealth-based Third-Person Shooter starring a Terran Ghost named Nova. Initially announced in 2002, it was postponed six times before being put on "indefinite hiatus", a month before its projected release date. Nova herself, though, got a Tie-In Novel and turns up for one mission in StarCraft II where you can either help her keep a bunch of deranged criminal psychics from escaping a prison complex, or make life hell for her employer, The Dominion, by helping them all escape. In 2016 she even got a DLC mini-campaign of her own, though Blizzard states that it doesn't incorporate any story elements from Ghost. She's also a playable character in Heroes of the Storm. Gameplay footage of it was leaked in 2020, as shown here.
    • Given a Shout-Out in World of Warcraft with a special grave stone in Netherstorm Outland for Nova, the would-be protagonist, with the N.O.V.A written on it. Nova herself appeared as a stealthed blood elf next to the grave at one point but has since been removed. The grave stone is known as the Nova Shrine among players.
    • Blizzard never actually canceled it (despite what some people may say) and keep saying they have plans to MAYBE finish the game (hence its "Postponed Indefinitely" status). Whether or not this can be taken as a glimmer of hope is up to you. Given the fact that Diablo 3 was in development for 11 years before release and survived the closing of Blizzard North in 2005, it's not beyond the realm of possibility - though it is certain it's never going to release on the Xbox, Gamecube and PS2 consoles as originally intended...
  • Star Fox:
    • After the 3DS version of Star Fox 64, co-developer Q-Games wanted to do another 3DS port, this time of the original Super Nintendo title. Although a demo was made, Nintendo never went through with it.
    • Star Fox Adventures by Rare was originally going to be a game called Dinosaur Planet for the Nintendo 64. It would've featured a wholly original universe and played very similarly to The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. It also would've likely been the most technologically advanced game on the N64, spanning a massive 512 megabit cartridgenote  and containing a giant open world to explore. At some point during development, Shigeru Miyamoto noticed that the game's main character Sabre looked strikingly similar to Star Fox hero Fox McCloud. It was also decided that the game would've ultimately been too ambitious for the N64's vastly outdated hardware. So, in early 2001, it was moved to the Nintendo GameCube and reworked into a Star Fox title. The game was released in late 2002note , and while it garnered pretty good reviews and solid sales overall, most people agreed that it probably would've been much better if Rare and Nintendo had left it as a new IP rather than shoehorning the Star Fox license into it.
  • Stargate Worlds was an MMORPG set in the Stargate-verse. Concept footage was briefly seen in the pilot of Stargate Universe (it's the game Eli's playing), but its developer went bankrupt, making it unlikely it will ever be released.
  • Star Trek:
    • Star Trek point & click adventure game entitled Secret of Vulcan Fury was in development by Interplay during the late 1990's, and would have featured the Original Series crew portrayed by the original cast in an episodic story. Each episode would focus on a different character, with the overall story revolving around an ancient Vulcan superweapon known as "Fury". While slated for a 1998 release and several trailers were released, the game would sadly end up being quietly cancelled. Several animation tests and environmental renders were later released, showing, among other things, plans to include a bowling alley on the USS Enterprise as an Easter Egg. Even later, lead designer Ken Allen released a never before seen WIP gameplay demo that showed part of Scotty's chapter of the game. note . Star Trek: The Secret of Vulcan Fury was heavily hyped for a 1997 release, featuring the full cast of Star Trek: The Original Series reprising their roles and 3D character animation that could arguably rival Pixar's work in animated film ten years later. By 1999 the project had been cancelled due to Interplay's financial difficulties, key team members jumping ship, and a rapidly inflating budget.
    • Star Trek V: The Final Frontier was a game already completed for the NES, and was cancelled.
    • Star Trek: The Next Generation: A World For All Seasons was going to be a Star Trek: The Next Generation adventure game for the 3DO.
    • Voyager was going to be a Star Trek: Voyager adventure game by Looking Glass Studios.
    • Borg Assimilator was going to allow the player to play as the Borg and assimilate planets by constructing Borg structures.
    • Infinite Space was going to be a 2011 browser-based game by Keen Games and Gameforge.
    • After approximately five years in development, the version of Star Trek Online created by Perpetual Entertainment had a lot of pretty pictures, but no evidence of code depicting the actual gameplay. CBS, quite cheesed at this, yanked the licence, gave it to Cryptic and Atari, and told them to get to work on a new game, which came out in February 2010.
  • Star Wars:
    • Star Wars: Ewok Adventure, also known as Revenge of the Jedi: Game I, was an unreleased Atari2600 game by Parker Brothers. Luckily, prototypes have been found.
    • Star Wars: The New Emperor was going to be a game about C-3PO investigating a new Galactic Emperor. The game was being developed in 1998. As the game would have had live actors, it may have been planned as an FMV game.
    • Proteus was the code name for a cancelled Star Wars console MMORPG being developed in 2003. Proteus was merged with Pangea, a project planned for the PS3 and Xbox 360. Both projects were eventually cancelled.
    • A Star Wars fighting game by Robomodo, developed for the Xbox, ended up being cancelled in 2005.
    • Star Wars: Attack Squadrons was a browser game that was canceled before leaving beta.
    • Star Wars: Battlefront III was first claimed to be in development by Free Radical Design in Computer and Video Games magazine in September 2006. It took a year and nine months later, from a different magazine, just for the rumor that a LucasArts employee was in the creation process. Then, nothing for another five months, before Activision Blizzard got a ratings classification from the Australian Film and Literature Classification (Which got an E10+ equivalent for the Nintendo DS), along with announcements that Free Radical lost the rights to develop the game. Gameplay footage, character renders, models, textures, and pre-alpha footage became available after LucasArts was shut down. Since then, EA and DICE have rebooted the series with the unrelated Star Wars Battlefront (2015).
    • Star Wars: Battlefront III: After Free Radical went bankrupt, concept art leaked showing Sith Lord Obi-Wan Kenobi. Prototype footage of what would have been Free Radical's game has since surfaced. There were plans for between twenty to one hundred player multiplayer, and art assets were being worked on for Star Wars: Battlefront IV. Another Star Wars: Battlefront III project was to be developed by Slant Six as a download-only title.
    • Star Wars: Darth Maul was going to have Darth Maul as the Player Character, and then became a Star Wars: The Clone Wars tie-in known as Damage. The game was later changed to be about a Legacy-era clone or descendant of Darth Maul, teaming up with Darth Talon, and fighting Darth Krayt and the Sith army, in Battle of the Sith Lords for PC, PS3, Xbox 360, and Wii U. The game was planned for a release in 2010, and cancelled in 2011.
    • Star Wars: Death Star was a planned iOS game that was cancelled.
    • Star Wars: First Assault was an FPS, focusing on multiplayer, developed on the Unreal Engine. The game was put on indefinite hold, and eventually cancelled, along with Star Wars: 1313.
    • Star Wars: Imperial Commando would have been a sequel to Star Wars: Republic Commando focusing on an Imperial assault team.
    • Star Wars: Jedi Knight would have continued with Star Wars: Jedi Knight III: Brink of Darkness and Jedi Master.
    • Star Wars: Jedi Outlaw was going to be a game set 500 years after the original trilogy, with the Jedi and Sith reaching peace and establishing "The Council", and a descendant of Luke Skywalker, acting as a sort of sheriff, being framed for murder.
      • Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic III had a developed concept and story before being cancelled. The player would follow Revan's journey to the Unknown Regions in search of the monstrous Ancient Sith from the Ancient Sith Empire, uncovering the influence each Sith had on the region. The game would also have introduced the female character Naresha.
      • BioWare expressed interest in developing more Knights of the Old Republic single player games even after the release of the MMORPG Star Wars: The Old Republic, but were denied by EA.
    • Star Wars: Outpost would have been both a browser game and iOS/Android game, inspired by EVE Online and Settlers of Catan, by a studio that was also working on an HD re-release of Day of the Tentacle. It was similar to FarmVille, in that the player could run their own moisture farm, and players could ally with either the light or the dark side while fighting over resources.
    • Star Wars: Rebel Warrior was going to be an action game featuring a Wookiee fighting the Empire.
    • Star Wars: Rogue Leaders: Rogue Squadron Wii was going to be a Wii compilation by Factor 5, containing the first three Rogue Squadron games, and would have also included Mii lightsaber duels.
    • Star Wars: Rogue Squadron: X-Wing vs. Tie Fighter was going to be an Xbox launch title. The game was planned to be an MMO about warring factions.
    • Star Wars: Smuggler, known as Star Wars: Scum And Villainy, would have focused on a Han Solo style smuggler. The game was cancelled in 2005, and some of the concept art was used in The Force Unleashed.
    • Star Wars: Super Bombad Racing was going to have a sequel, known as Project Hermes, that was cancelled in 2002.
    • Star Wars Trilogy was a game planned for the Xbox that was moved to the Wii, and cancelled in 2008. The game would have featured speeder bike races, lightsaber battles, and ship battles.
    • Star Wars: Underworld would have been an open world RPG and tie-in to the planned live-action TV series. It became Star Wars: 1313 when Lucas suggested the bounty hunter protagonist be Boba Fett. It was shown at E3 2012, then canceled.
    • Star Wars: Vernost was a game being developed by Hughes Training. It would have been about Rebel and Imperial ships fighting over the volcanic planet Vernost.
    • The book Rogue Leaders: The Story Of LucasArts shows developed concept logos for several more projects, with little more known about them than the title, including Star Wars: Rise Of The Rebellion, Star Wars: Rogue Jedi, Star Wars: Rebel Jedi, Star Wars: Jedi Rebel, Star Wars: Episode VII: Shadows of the Sith, Star Wars: Han Solo, Star Wars: Rebel Agent, Star Wars: Vader, Star Wars: Rebel Fury, Star Wars: Jedi Hunter, and Star Wars: Dark Jedi. It is unclear how many were titles of projects that were cancelled or were working titles for other projects.
    • Chris Avellone had a concept for a Star Wars RPG similar to the comic Dark Times, about a Sith hunting down Jedi during the Imperial era.
    • Star Wars: 1313, an amazing looking game about Boba Fett, was announced around E3 2012. In 2014, Disney confirmed they had dropped the Star Wars 1313 trademark, though Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy has stated some of the unused material may be used for another project.
    • Visceral Games was working with the director of Uncharted on a Star Wars action adventure game, code named Ragtag, before being shut down by EA.
    • EA Vancouver was working on an open world Star Wars game code named Project Orca before being shut down by EA.
    • EA Vancouver and Criterion were working on an open world Star Wars Battlefront spinoff code named "Viking," planned for a release on PS5 and Xbox Series X.
  • Stellar Dawn, a Sci-Fi MMORPG by Jagex, has been in development since 2008 or 2010, depending on whether or not you include the never finished predecessor Mechscape. Its development has currently been paused indefinitely.
  • Stonekeep was going to be called Brian's Dungeon, with system requirements including a floppy disk drive, 640K ram, a 286 processor, and no required mouse or hard drive. Stonekeep 2: Godmaker, cancelled in 2001, was being developed by Black Isle Studios.
  • A Streets of Rage 4 was being developed for the Sega Saturn, but was instead released as Fighting Force on the PC, PlayStation and N64.
  • Streets Of Rage 4 was one of the games announced for the Dreamcast but was eventually cancelled because the president of Sega of America had never heard of the franchise before and therefore, the fans wouldn't know what it was either.
  • Strelka Stories, a game set in the same universe as Tail Concerto and Solatorobo. Concept art was released in 2010 to commemorate CyberConnect2's 15th anniversary but aside from a brief mention in 2012 of a project connected to Solatorobo, nothing has come of it and the teaser site has since disappeared from CC2's website. Fuga: Melodies of Steel, another Little Tail Bronx based project, was announced in 2018 and is set to release in July 2021, but it's unknown if it has any connection to Strelka Stories.
  • The Japanese Famicom version of Strider was promoted as early as mid-1988, during the serialization of the manga (which shared the same basic premise of the NES game). The game was delayed a few times, then was never heard from again. An American-only English version based on an Obvious Beta did however saw release in July 1989. Several rumored sequels for the series surfaced over the years, but the only one known for sure existed was GRiN's attempted reboot in 2009, which didn't break out of proof-of-concept before the company filed for bankruptcy.
  • Sunman for the original NES was planned to be released in 1992 by Sunsoft, but never came out due to unknown reasons. (Development was contracted to EIM, a small Japanese company also responsible for Panic Restaurant.) Its gameplay mechanics seem to hint, though, that they had planned to make this as a Superman Licensed Game, but Sunsoft couldn't keep the rights to the Man of Steel and had planned to make a game using the engine they had made with original characters. (Sunsoft was nevertheless able to release a similar Superman game for the Sega Genesis the same year, with the license intact.)
  • Introversion Software (Uplink, DEFCON and Darwinia) spent many years hinting at their new project, Subversion, and even produced an intriguing twenty-part development blog — before abruptly halting all announcements and going dark for ten months. A lot of people feared someone Died During Production, but the reality was more mundane; they'd realised that Subversion's ideas weren't coalescing into a game in they wanted it to, so they threw it onto the back burner and turned to a new game, Prison Architect. Subversion remains as a project and an idea, but it's pretty much on indefinite hiatus as a game.
  • Super Bat Puncher, a critically-acclaimed NES homebrew Platform Game. All that was ever released of it was a two-level demo, back in 2011. The developers have since moved on to another project, Micro Mages.
  • Super Dog Booby: Akachan Daibōken no Maki was meant to be released for the Famicom back in 1991 by Jaleco, but it was never released for unknown reasons. Despite its name, it was nothing to do with boobies, instead you played as a dog named Booby who had to guard a baby named Alfred from hazards.
  • Ever heard of the (very NSFW) Emo Game? There was a Super Emo Game III in development for a long time. Scheduled for a 2006 release, it... was never released. Very, very occasional updates were released for years. For a while, it was claimed the game was going to be on a CD you could order online. And then, to close the cycle, superemogame.com was taken down and all mention of Super Emo Game III was removed from emogame.com, as were the links to the blogs discussing it. Jason Oda has since considered the Emogame series an Old Shame.
  • Superhero was an amazing-looking Amiga game, a mix of beat-em-up and platformer ahead of its time, which was announced in 1994 but never released. It was actually pretty much finished but an incredible case of bad luck, as detailed in this article, prevented it to see the light of the day. Basically, the dev team's computers were confiscated by the police for an investigation, and when they received them back four years later, the Amiga game market was all but dead. To add insult to injury, the salvaged code was lost when the working computers were destroyed in a house fire. Plus, it's unclear who owns the rights to the game so, even if it could be miraculously re-created, it couldn't be legally published again. The main developer would like to work on a similar game someday, but the original is sadly lost forever.
  • Sword of Legendia was first announced in 2006 by Namco Bandai Games and was to be an RPG for the Wii. Though the title sounds similar to Tales of Legendia, produce Tsutomo Gouda said it wasn't actually part of the Tales series and that the name would likely change. Other than one piece of character art, nothing was revealed about the game for years. No other pieces of art were shown, no screenshots, no trailers, not even any basic information on the story or gameplay. In a 2008 interview with Gouda regarding Tales of Vesperia, he said that Sword of Legendia was still in development. Kentaru Kawashima, producer of Fragile Dreams: Farewell Ruins of the Moon also claimed the game was still in development in a 2009 interview. Finally, in a Japan Expo 2011 interview with Yoshizumi Makoto, it was revealed that Sword of Legendia was cancelled years ago.
  • Swordquest: Airworld was cancelled very early due to The Great Video Game Crash of 1983. According to Tod Frye, the game's creative director, the actual game was only about 20% complete, and the comic-book tie in was never even started. All we know about the actual gameplay is that it would've been based on the I Ching, an ancient Chinese text.

    Video Game Titles: T-Z 
  • Tabula Rasa was originally developed as a fantasy MMORPG and Spiritual Successor to Ultima, by gaming legend Richard "Lord British" Garriott. It spent ten years in Development Hell, cost millions, and, according to the hype, was going to do to MMOs what Ultima did to RPGs. The original fantasy design was scrapped and reworked into a different fantasy MMORPG, then that version was scrapped and reworked as an MMOFPS that went defunct a year after its release. Garriott sued the publisher, with each claiming the other was responsible for one of the game industry's most spectacular failures to date. It turns out it was NCSoft's fault, through what can only be called a real life example of Corrupt Corporate Executive behavior — they cancelled the healthy MMO and forged a resignation letter from Richard Garriott (In Space!) to keep him from getting a stock windfall. This backfired gloriously though, as Garriott successfully sued them for $28 million.
  • One running joke among players of the serial MMORPG A Tale In The Desert comes from the lead developer's insistence that 'This Telling (iteration) will be shorter'. Of course, that was back in the second Telling, which ran for a year and a half, and led to the third Telling, which ran for over two years. Well into the fourth Telling, there were no predictions for how long it would run, though the fact that its Tech Tree quickly pushed forth light years ahead of its predecessors was a good sign...
  • Data East's pinball division worked on an unreleased fighting arcade game called Tattoo Assassins. It has a lot of farting!
  • Tekken X Street Fighter, a crossover between Namco and Capcom's signature fighting games built around the Tekken 6 engine, was announced together with Street Fighter X Tekken in 2010. Street Fighter X Tekken was released two years later in 2012. Since then, there had been little news on how far in development Tekken X Street Fighter was going. No official gameplay footage has been shown, no roster has been announced, and a release date has yet to be established. In 2019, series producer Katsuhiro Harada mentioned that the future of the game is uncertain due to the success of Tekken 7, which realigned Bandai Namco's priorities concerning TxSF, and in 2021, Harada said the game is only about about 30% done, and addressed the development of the game is put on hold.
  • The shutdown of Telltale Games left a lot of series unfinished or unreleased, including the final episodes of The Walking Dead: The Final Season, The Wolf Among Us Season 2, Game of Thrones Season 2, an untitled Stranger Things game and even an Evil Dead game.
  • Territoire is a strategy RPG developed by EasyGameStation started right after Recettear, which would be around 2011. Development has been constantly pushed back but the blog entries show that the creator still has enough interest to work on it to this day.
  • Tetris
    • Tetris was going to have a Game & Watch port. It was touted as "Coming Soon" when Zelda was released but cancelled because Nintendo thought it would hurt sales of the Game Boy version. It was eventually released as part of the Mini Classics line in 1999.
    • Tetris: The Grand Master 4: The Masters of Round was unveiled in 2009, but cancelled in 2010 after frustration over free-to-play Tetris clones. A similar game was shown off in 2015, reusing assets from the 2009 version, but very little has been said about it since.
  • That Which Sleeps had a successful Kickstarter campaign, promising early footage from the developer, and then...radio silence.
  • They Came from Hollywood, a Real-Time Strategy that has been in development since 2001.
  • Thief:
    • Thief II: The Metal Age: Like its predecessor, a gold version was in the works but was never finished, as Looking Glass Studios went bankrupt. Thief 2: Gold would have contained several new missions, taking Garret to the never visited city slums, a prestigious college for the noble, a mission portraying the final decline of the hammers, a museum, and finally, "Waking the Dead", Thief 2's Shalebridge Cradle/Return to the Cathedral in terms of horror atmosphere. A dedicated fan community attempted to finish the gold version, but as of 2007 the project is considered dead.
    • Prior to Thief: Deadly Shadows, Looking Glass Studios was going to make their own version of Thief III.
  • This is Vegas was going to be a 2008 partying simulator by Midway. After repeated delays, it was cancelled in 2010 due to Midway's bankruptcy and IP acquirer Warner Bros. consolidating its development team into Monolith Productions.
  • Thrill Kill. The game was raked across the coals of Development Hell for years, its publisher — Virgin Interactive — trying to tone down the violence in it to conform to an M rating before being picked up by EA. While it's now available through filesharing by the game's developers, there will never be an official release of it; EA found the game so senselessly violent that they actually refused to sell the game off to someone else, for fear of it getting out and tarnishing their reputation.
    • Although a developer did get the rights to use the engine, which was the basis for Wu-Tang: Shaolin Style.
      • The controversy it had already stirred up might have been a factor. (The BBFC had refused to give it classification, essentially banning it in the UK).
  • Thunder Force VI was first announced for the Sega Dreamcast, and an intro movie from late 2000 exists. The next year, Sega abandoned the console market, and Technosoft folded. The unreleased game's soundtrack was released. Sega ended up licensing the series and releasing an all-new Thunder Force VI for the PlayStation 2 in 2008.
  • Tiberium, a strategy-FPS-milsim hybrid in the Command & Conquer universe, drew along for some two years before being canned by EA's Quality Control. According to Game Informer, it controlled well, but they just couldn't make it fun.
    • The team developing the game said it was cancelled for very different reasons, simply put there were rampant disagreements amongst the dev team, as several people wanted to take control of the project and all had their own ideas for the game, with so many people competing for control of the project, the game development severely slowed down to the point where EA decided it was cheaper to cancel the game outright, rather than risk any more delays.
  • Ever wonder why you don't hear about TimeSplitters 4 anymore? Two words: Executive Meddling. While Future Perfect sold very well and was positively received by critics, it took two years for developer Free Radical Design to announce the next TimeSplitters game. Their next project, Haze, sold poorly and gave a debilitating financial blow to Free Radical, forcing them to cancel Star Wars: Battlefront III right before its completion. Free Radical went into administration before being sold to Crytek to become Crytek UK, who proceeded to put TimeSplitters 4 on indefinite hiatus so that it could work on Crytek's own Crysis series instead. Then, Crytek UK imploded in 2014 due to financial issues caused by exposés that revealed Crytek had been paying the studio's employees very little (as in, about £700 per month), causing them to go on strike. With the series rights currently sitting with THQ Nordic, the future does hold some promise, but no word has surfaced since the acquisition.
  • Tiny Toons: Defenders of the Universe was being developed by Treasure in the early 2000s under contract from Conspiracy, with screenshots and previews being shown. However, years passed by and there was nothing new on the release of the game. Eventually, the game was confirmed as cancelled, the reason supposedly being that Conspiracy went bankrupt around 2002, and lost the rights to Tiny Toon Adventures before the game was released. Fortunately, the game wasn't completely lost, as a ROM of the beta was leaked, and can be played on a PS2 emulator.
  • Blizzard's unannounced MMO, code named Titan, which was in development since 2006, underwent a "reset" in 2013 and wasn't expected to release until 2016 at the earliest, if at all. In 2014, Blizzard announced that Titan was officially cancelled, as they couldn't figure out a way to make the game fun, and they decided that they didn't need a second MMO. Some of the game's assets and concepts (such as a teleporting character with SMGs) were used in Overwatch instead.
  • ToonFighterZ started its life in 1997 as the obscure Fight 'N' Jokes, a wacky but actually competent comical fighting game made by "Nasty Brothers Software" (three Italian brothers plus some friends). Some time later the dev team changed their name to Mental Drink and around 2010 set up a website, a Facebook page and a YouTube trailer to promote the new and improved version of their game that was supposed to come out for Nintendo DS and iPhone. Years later, the ToonFighterZ site shut down and Mental Drink only actually made lame advergames and rehashes of Pong and Space Invaders. It's safe to say that the project's dead at this point.
  • TORN was a cancelled PC RPG by Black Isle Studios using the SPECIAL system from Fallout.
  • Troika Games was working on an untitled computer RPG in a post-apocalyptic setting before the studio closed in 2005.
  • A Tremors game was being developed in 2002 by Rock Solid Studios, for the GameCube, PC, PS2, and Xbox, but the game was cancelled in 2003.
  • Trinity: The Shatter Effect, a First-Person Shooter being developed by Gray Matter Interactive (developer of Return to Castle Wolfenstein) for Activision, was featured at E3 2003, only to be canceled a few months later.
  • Level-5's True Fantasy Live Online for the Xbox was going to be 3D anime-style fantasy MMORPG that could have competed with Final Fantasy XI.
  • The Tsukihime remake was announced as something that was being made as far back as 2008. Since then, Type-Moon gave out some minor details on its progress once every couple of years, while they were pumping out Fate-related media for years on end. The actual product finally released in 2021, but even then, the other half of the routes are yet to be finished.
  • Twisted Metal Black 2: Harbor City was supposedly cancelled due to several developers dying in a plane crash, though that's now widely believed to be a hoax as there is no actual proof that anything like that ever happened. David Jaffe himself more or less admitted it was false, and it's more likely that Jaffe was too busy working on God of War to be able to devote his full attention to Twisted Metal, so he ultimately pulled the plug on the game because of it. What was available and completed was put into Twisted Metal: Head-On: Extra Twisted Edition for the PS2 under the title "Twisted Metal: Lost" as well as a three-dimensional out-of-vehicle exploration area where you play as Needles Kane, entitled "Sweet Tour" (which was supposedly going to be part of Harbor City as well).
  • Tyrannosaurus Tex, by Slitherine Software, was going to be a single player FPS, with planned two-player deathmatch, on the Game Boy Color. Developed in 1999, the game was cancelled in 2001, due to publishers shifting focus to the Game Boy Advance.
  • Ubusuna was a shmup by Hiroshi Iuchi, the creator of Ikaruga, announced in 2014 for the PS4, as one can see in this video. Nothing more has been said about it, and Iuchi mentions in his blog (in Japanese) that the project has been halted by work- and health-related problems, so it will probably never see the light of the day.
  • Ultimate Journey was to have been released by Bandai America for the NES in the early 1990s. Apparently a Ninja Gaiden-like game with an Magical Native American warrior who could transform into animals, it must have been at least nearly finished, since box art was produced and Electronic Gaming Monthly gave it a full-page review, yet little more about it has emerged since.
  • Ultima:
    • Ultima Online 2 was developed as a 3D sequel to Ultima Online, and could have competed with EverQuest, Asheron's Call and Dark Age of Camelot. The game had similar features to early Star Wars: Galaxies, sharing the same designers, and was later titled Ultima Worlds Online: Origin, then cancelled. Some themes of sci-fi mixed with dark fantasy were later used in the Technocrat War novelization trilogy and the Ultima Online: Lord Blackthorn's Revenge expansion, as Todd McFarlane had already developed concept art for the game, and a short preview was shown in Ultima IX.
    • Ultima X: Odyssey was going to be a 2004 MMORPG on the Unreal engine, continuing from Ultima IX. Set in the new world of Alucinor, the game was to feature a player virtue system and more cartoon-like graphics.
  • Universe at War: Earth Assault was originally conceived as the first installment of the Universe at War series but no sequel materialized after SEGA decided the sales and reception wasn't good enough.
  • Vector Thrust, while it was released and out of Early Access, it's still Obvious Beta with unplayable campaign and intermittent crashes. It was left at this state when the developer, Timesymmetry, had suddenly gone completely silent around August 2016 to this day.
  • Vic Viper, a 3D racing game by Konami, was described by EGM as "30-percent finished" when they previewed it in 1995. EGM's suspicions that the game might not be released proved correct.
  • A Virtua Cop 2 port for the N-Gage was cancelled in 2004.
  • Ultimate Newcomer, by Protovision, was going to be an updated version of the Retraux C64 game Newcomer, for Windows. Since the 2012 release date, the game has not appeared.
  • Viewtiful Joe stated during the ending that the world would have to be saved three times. After Viewtiful Joe 2 came out, Double Trouble and Red Hot Rumble were released to pad out the third game's development. However, Clover Studios was shut down by parent company Capcom and the game never saw the light of day. However, Joe recently made an appearance in Tatsunoko vs. Capcom and Marvel vs. Capcom 3, and PlatinumGames have made a spiritual successor, The Wonderful 101. Right now, Word of God says "Joe is sleeping" — a fancy way of saying the series has been Put on a Bus.
  • Warcraft Adventures: Lord of the Clans, a cancelled 2D adventure game intended to set the stage for Warcraft III and World of Warcraft. The plot was adapted into the novel Lord of the Clans. The game was later leaked in 2016, and it was for the most part finished, missing little more than a few voice lines (which had text-to-speech lines as a placeholder).
  • Warhammer:
    • Gorkamorka, a Warhammer 40,000-licensed Vehicular Combat game for the Sega Dreamcast, was featured at E3 2000, but was never released.
    • Warhammer Online was an MMORPG developed by Climax Online in 2002, and was cancelled in 2004. Mythic Entertainment developed their own Warhammer Online that was released in 2008, and was shut down in 2013.
  • Warhammer40000:
    • Warhammer 40,000: Dark Millennium had to be completely retooled thanks to the fall of Vigil Games after its parent company went bankrupt and was unable to sell the studio. However, the members of the studio have repeatedly tried to calm down the crowd, stating that game isn't dead yet. The subsequent mess of retoolings led to a new project Eternal Crusade rising from Dark Millennium's ashes, which went into closed alpha in August 2015 thanks to a secure source of funding from founder's packs.
  • Warhawk 2 for the PS1. They did recently revive the franchise on the PS3, though.
  • War of the Grail was going to be an arcade game by Capcom, with battlefield combat similar to Dynasty Warriors.
  • The Warriors was to have a Spiritual Successor, We Are The Mods, set in 1960's England. The game was developed for the PS2/Xbox, moved to the Xbox 360, and was cancelled by Rockstar New York.
  • After the release of L.A. Noire in 2011 Team Bondi was planning to make Whore of the Orient. Later the same year, Kennedy Miller Mitchell bought Team Bondi's assets and intellectual property, and staff were given the option to join the company as development of the game continued there. However the last status update of the game was in 2013, and an interview 2016 practically confirmed that the game was dead. The game itself would have taken place in Useful Notes/Shanghai in 1936 although nothing is known about what the plot would have been.
  • The Survival Horror game Winter for the Wii was originally announced in 2007 and after making a demo and a trailer no publisher has been interested in publishing it. Last word from the company on the game was in 2009 and saying they were hoping that as they continue to update the game a publisher would grow interested.
    • The developer had also planned on releasing Austin Powers: Oh, Behave!, Dexter's Laboratory, Duke Nukem D-Day and Mary-Kate and Ashley in ACTION! for the PlayStation 2.
  • THQ and AKI started work on a sequel to WWF No Mercy called WWF Backlash. They were around 20% complete when the game was cancelled due to Nintendo deciding to cut support for the N64.
  • Before Wizardry 8 was released in 2001, a game known as Wizardry 8: Stones of Arnhem was cancelled.
  • The planned World of Darkness MMO by CCP was in development since 2006, with only sporadic updates over the years. However, don't expect this game to ever be released, as in 2014, CCP officially cancelled the game and disbanded the development team.
    • Descriptions of the internal practice in CCP indicate that the game was essentially victim to EVE Online's expansion cycle; personnel would be 'temporarily reassigned' to the latest EVE expansion, and replaced with new people later who had no idea where the project stood, thus requiring the development team to start from scratch. Rumor is that they got the game to an alpha build on three separate occasions, each one an entirely different engine. When CCP sold White Wolf and its properties off to Paradox studios, they supposedly got all the code from these alpha builds... but MMOs aren't Paradox's forte, and it's unlikely they'll try to make it work, when they could simply develop games that fit the franchise and their expertise first.
  • Several Wing Commander games that never came to be: MMORPG space shooter Wing Commander Online/Privateer Online, either one project with two titles or two concurrent projects. Wing Commander: Strike Team, a multiplayer sequel to Secret Ops. Wing Commander VII and Wing Commander: Privateer 3, parts 2 and 3 of the Wing Commander: Prophecy trilogy.
    • Wing Commander Online / Wing Commander: Privateer Online was going to be a Wing Commander MMO, though it is unclear if this was two separate projects or one project with two names.
  • Wish by Mutable Realms was going to be a 2004 "Ultra MMO" featuring tens of thousands of players on a single server, with live content run by GMs instead of static quests. The game was cancelled in 2005.
  • The Witcher: Rise of the White Wolf was a reworked port of the original Witcher that was announced for the PS3 and Xbox 360 in 2009. It ended up being canned due to creative differences between CD Projekt RED and co-developer Widescreen Games.
  • Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory was going to be an expansion pack for Return to Castle Wolfenstein, with its own single player campaign, but ended up as a free, standalone multiplayer game with no single player mode included.
  • X-Men:
    • X-Men: Mind Games was planned for the Sega 32x, but was cancelled for unknown reasons. The game would have taken place in Murderworld, and was set to have Wolverine, Bishop, Rogue and Iceman as playable characters, with Arcade as the Big Bad.
    • X-Women: The Sinister Virus was a 2D platformer that would have starred Storm, Jean Grey and Rogue, with an emphasis on flight and aerial combat. It was planned for the Sega Genesis, but was cancelled after Sega switched all of its focus to the newer Sega Saturn system.
  • Egosoft once teased an X-Universe MMORPG. The site is still up, but the plans were shelved due largely to overwhelmingly negative fan reception.
  • Yeah Yeah Beebiss I was listed as an NES game on a Play It Again mail order form in Video Games & Computer Entertainment magazine, and on a Funco mail order form as Yeah Beebiss I. The most likely candidate is a planned localization of a game in the Family Trainer series for the Famicom, Rai Rai Kyonshis: Baby Kyonshi no Amida Daibouken, where the player directs the movements of a Chinese Vampire with the Power Pad.
  • Young Justice: Legacy was released for the 3DS, PC, PS3, and Xbox 360, while the DS, Wii and Wii U versions were cancelled.

    Video Game Titles: Multiple-game Examples 
  • Vaporware is not a new phenomenon. Way back in the 8-bit days of 1984, Psyclapse and Bandersnatch (for the Commodore 64 and the ZX Spectrum, respectively, although practically the same game) were in development for Imagine Software. Advertising promised much — hardware dongles to support new features Never Seen Before on either system, and promoting the achievements of its outrageously large development team (of nine, nearly nine times the average for the time). Despite the hype, it eventually became clear that Psyclapse never got past the design stage, and Bandersnatch would need to sell for a ridiculous amount of money just to break even. By the time the BBC arrived to film the spectacular successes of a Liverpool-based firm at the forefront of the then-upstart computer games industry, Imagine were absolutely in the toilet, and the BBC found themselves making a cautionary tale about corporate excess that finished with the bailiffs arriving to repossess everything Imagine ever owned (and very nearly the BBC cameras, too). One of the splinter companies organized in the wake of Imagine's demise, Finchspeed, continued to develop Bandersnatch, and a version for the Sinclair QL was allegedly completed but never released. Finally, the game was remade as Brataccas for the Amiga, Atari ST and Apple Macintosh and published by Psygnosis, a new company that would also revive Psyclapse In Name Only as a secondary publishing label. (Ocean Software likewise acquired the corporate name and associated trademarks of Imagine and assigned them to a development unit of its own.) Bandersnatch even inspired an interactive movie about struggling to develop a game.
    • Another notorious ZX Spectrum example was Street Hawk, a spin-off from a barely noticed American action TV show that suffered such severe delays that the software company had to give a completely different game with the same title to a magazine that they'd promised copies to for a subscription gift offer.
    • Scooby-Doo in the Castle Mystery was originally previewed in magazines as a Dragon's Lair-like game for the ZX Spectrum. The publisher ultimately decided the original concept was technically unworkable, and so commissioned a simpler game using the same license. This inspired Crash Magazine's "Scooby Award" for much-delayed games.
    • Sigue Sigue Sputnik's "Massive Retaliation" ends with an ad for an unreleased game: "Behold, the fifth generation of home computer entertainment. Get the Sigue Sigue Sputnik computer game from your favorite software house now." The game was mentioned in Computer and Video Games issue 60 and Commodore User issue 35, promising a September 1986 release date on the Commodore 64, with plans for release on the ZX Spectrum and Amstrad CPC. Tony Gibson and Mark Harrison created a Commodore 64 demo, labelled "Media Wars", in hopes of finding a publisher, but the original disks were lost after being left at a friend's house, who threw them out after a flood.
    • The officially licensed Star Trek for the ZX Spectrum (not to be confused with its various ports of the Star Trek Text Game) became a Running Gag in magazines like Sinclair User for its persistent failure to be released. It never did make it to the Spectrum, though as Star Trek: The Rebel Universe it did show up on the Commodore 64, Atari ST and PC.
  • In late 1982, The Great Game Company (which would later become GameTek) announced plans to adapt seven game shows into video games for the Atari 2600: Family Feud, Jeopardy!, The Joker's Wild, Password Plus, The Price Is Right, Tic-Tac-Dough and Wheel of Fortune. Unfortunately, they were being developed just as The Great Video Game Crash of 1983 started and the plans were put to an abrupt end. Of the seven games, only Feud got far enough for a prototype which is presumed to be lost.
  • Over the years, there have been a major number of Anime-related games that attempted to cross over to the US, but failed.
    • There were plans to release games based on AKIRA and it was advertised in the 1990s release of the anime. It would have been for all systems and each one would have gone a different route (Genesis would have been multi-genre, the Super NES would have just been sidescrolling, Game Boy would have been just a Dolled-Up Installment), but THQ bought the company making it, Black Pearl, and killed it.
    • There were two attempts to make a Kimba the White Lion game, one for the NES and another for the Nintendo 64. Both were oddly cancelled.
    • Macross VF-X2: The cancelled PlayStation North American localization was to include English voice acting and an exclusive mecha.
    • There was supposed to have been a game based on Trigun for the PlayStation 2 by Sega. Not much was said about it beyond a simple ad.
    • Tecmo created an MMORPG based on Bastard!!. It got as far as the beta stage before it got cancelled.
    • Toho planned to release the fighting game Ranma ½ II: Anything Goes Martial Arts for the SNES, the cancelled localization of Ranma ½: Chougi Rambuhen.
    • In 2005, Bandai planned to release Cowboy Bebop: Serenade of Remembrance to the States after releasing it in Japan. In 2006, everything was dropped about it and a Bandai rep admitted it thought it would be a waste of time. Fun fact: the image on the Cowboy BeBop at His Computer trope page came from that game.
  • Bullfrog Productions was working on several games that were cancelled due to Electronic Arts buying them up: Creation, Dungeon Keeper 3: War for the Overworld, Genesis: The Hand of God, The Indestructibles, Theme Movie Studio, Theme Resort, and Void Star.
  • Some games based on Image Comics were advertised but not released. A Gen13 game was announced for PlayStation, N64 and Saturn. A Shadowhawk game on the SNES was not released, though prototypes have been found. Youngblood: Search And Destroy was announced for PlayStation and PC, and was not released, though the PC version's demo is available.
  • A third The Last Blade game and a sequel to Garou: Mark of the Wolves were apparently in development when SNK collapsed in 2001.
  • The Lufia series has a few of these:
    • The Sega Genesis version of Lufia & The Fortress of Doom, which was advertised with a delay ("It's worth the wait!"), but never released. The same company assigned to develop this port was also working on two other never-release games for Taito: Brimstone for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and Farstar for the PlayStation.
    • Lufia: Ruins Chaser for the Sony PlayStation, cancelled due to the bankruptcy of its developer. (Ideas from that game were used in Lufia: The Legend Returns, which was developed by the same developer, Neverland, as the first two games in the series and the second's reimagining.)
    • Lufia: Beginning of a Legend for the Game Boy Color, originally in development alongside Ruins Chaser. (Unlike Ruins Chaser, the ideas used in this game were scrapped entirely rather than handed to Neverland.)
  • The equivalents of Duke Nukem Forever in the Doom modding community are Mordeth Episode 2 and Millennium. Mordeth in particular is so notorious for this that the Cacowards' "longest development time" award is named the "Mordeth Award" in its honor.
  • Several Maxis games were unreleased.
    • SimCity on the SNES started developed as a SimCity game on the NES, which was not released.
    • Though SimCity 3000 was released in 1999 as a 2D followup to SimCity 2000, the game was previewed as a full 3D game. This version was not released.
    • SimMars, planned to be released around 2000, was previewed on the CD for SimCity 3000; the game was canceled, though The Sims: Vacation references a SimMars arcade game.
    • SimsVille, planned to be released around 2001, was previewed on the CD for SimCity 3000 Unlimited and The Sims: Livin' Large, and was canceled, with some features included in The Sims: Hot Date, The Sims 2, The Sims 3, MySims, and SimCity 4.
    • MySims Social was going to be a Facebook social game, like the defunct The Sims Social and SimCity Social games, and was canceled.
    • The Sims console game, The Urbz: Sims in the City, was planned to be a series of around three games, with an eventual PC port. The Urbz 2, planned for release on PlayStation 2, Gamecube and Xbox, had its development moved to the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Wii, and was canceled. The PlayStation 2 version of The Sims 2 uses The Urbz 2 engine, and assets can be found on the game disc.
    • Most elusive and controversial of all was of course SimRefinery, which was being produced in collaboration with Chevron. An early alpha of the game was finally found and leaked into the internet in early 2020.
  • PC games that use mods will often fall under this trope at some point. Usually, the modder or a team of modders will get a bit too ambitious in their work and give up trying to complete the mod or real life issues pop up that prevent them from finishing their work. It is not unheard of to see mods with great potential that won't ever see the light of day.
  • Not even Game Makers are safe! In the MegaZeux community, the general rule is that if someone publishes a demo of their game, that game will never be released. Period. This trend is popularly known as the demo curse and came about due to the scope of any given MegaZeux game growing too big for its designer(s) to handle when the engine was new compared to a smaller game made in its more limited spiritual predecessor ZZT. Among its best-known victims are A Death Beyond Imagination, Honor Quest 2, and Weirdness (by the creator of MegaZeux herself, who released only the first chapter before leaving the community.)
    • The most infamous of them all, however, is most likely the MegaZeux port of the ZZT game Sivion, which was hyped to the point that its author included digs at ZZT's obsolescence compared to MegaZeux in the ZZT version, and created a (mostly) non-interactive slide show with breathless narration about how the MegaZeux version would be so much bigger and more exciting than the ZZT version. In the end, all that came out of this enthusiasm was a demo with barely anything in it and an unfinished prototype.
    • More notable cases include Autumn Dreams' Xenogenesis and Draconic Creations' The Dark Corner, both of which are compilations of demos for the companies' games, with the former including another demo of the aforementioned Sivion remake. With a scant few exceptions (including Darkness II, Honor Quest: Special Edition and Bernard the Bard), none of these games were ever completed, marking them as en masse cases of the demo curse.
  • The Nintendo 64's path through history was littered by the emaciated bodies of partially developed games. Some, like Robotech: Crystal Dreams, Fire Emblem 64 (also known as Ankoku no Miko aka Maiden of Darkness), 64 Wars and the above Earthbound 64, simply collapsed under their own weight and died. Others, like efforts toward a 3D Kirby game and sequel to Mario 64, produced various side-projects in lieu of their originally intended design. In fact, the N64 was legendary for this sort of thing, with games supposed to be launch titles stuck in development for years afterwards (Body Harvest, Mission: Impossible) and swapping between multiple development teams, executive meddling, and ultimately numerous cancellations. None of this helped the flagging fortunes of the system as gamers frustrated by the long software droughts often abandoned Nintendo for the more reliable PlayStation lineup. Remember Freak Boy? No? Didn't think so.
  • Obsidian Entertainment had announced several projects being developed concurrently which were not published, including a prequel to Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs known as Dwarves, Futureblight, and the Xbox One third person open world RPG Stormlands, known as project North Carolina. Aliens: Crucible was going to be an Aliens RPG, but SEGA chose to publish Aliens: Colonial Marines instead.
  • The Panel de Pon remake/sequel is a really odd case. The Japanese release of the game was canned, but the game did make it into worldwide markets as a Dolled-Up Installment featuring Pokémon characters. Japan (and regrettably, only Japan) would get what the game was originally intended to be one generation later in Nintendo Puzzle Collection.
  • Rare picked up quite a few of these, specially in the hey day of the N64 and GameCube era.
    • Killer Instinct never received a port for the Nintendo 64, despite being advertised in the arcade machine's attract mode. The SNES port of Killer Instinct 2 was never released. Killer Instinct 3 was planned for the arcade and N64, but was canceled to focus on developing Perfect Dark and Twelve Tales: Conker 64, the game that became Conker's Bad Fur Day.
    • Conker would once again have trouble with this as a sequel for the GameCube was announced, but cancelled.
    • Donkey Kong Racing, a racing game slated for the GameCube that would focus around the entire Kong family, and would have you riding on animals instead of vehicles. It was canned once Rareware was bought out by MS.
    • Due to the cancellation of the "McLaren" Windows Phone, featuring gesture technology, a Punch-Out!! style mobile game, TJ Combo Boxing, was canceled, along with the games Fragments and Young Conker.
    • And before they were Rare, they were Ultimate Play The Game on the ZX Spectrum; the endings of Knight Lore, Pentagram and Underwurlde all hinted at the imminent release of Mire Mare... rumours abound, but the most widely accepted theory is that it was at most half finished and subsequently abandoned when Ultimate were partially taken over by US Gold.
  • Three games based on Return of the Jedi were announced by Parker Bros. for the Atari 2600, but they only released one, Death Star Battle, before abandoning video games due to The Great Video Game Crash of 1983. A prototype of "Game I" (also known as Ewok Adventure) was discovered, but the second game, whose concept art suggests being based on the Battle of Sarlacc's Pit, appears to have never been programmed. Other unreleased titles announced by Parker Bros. included The Lord of the Rings: Journey to Rivendell, McDonald's, Incredible Hulk, and a James Bond game based on the Traintop Battle from Octopussy; prototypes of the first two have emerged.
  • Freeware developer tapeworm has been working on Velella for nearly five years, and Avaus for three. On his site, he mentioned he wants to have Avaus done by the end of 2007, then struck it through and appended 2008. Both years, of course, have long since passed.
  • Sierra:
    • Plans to continue with VGA remakes of previous titles, including King's Quest II & III, were cancelled when sales of their released VGA remakes did not meet expectations.
    • A proposed version of Mask of Eternity by Davidson and Associates was going to be a more non-violent version of the game.
    • When Mask of Eternity was being developed, Roberta Williams discussed concepts for King's Quest IX, including being a multiplayer or MMO adventure; the project was not further developed. Ideas included Connor starring in the series; King Graham would be older and unable to go on further adventures, and Alexander would be busy as king of the Green Isles. Connor would meet Rosella, forming an eventual love triangle between Connor, Rosella and Edgar. In-game, Connor and Rosella could swap items, helping each other in solving puzzles and fighting monsters together.
    • Along with Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude, Vivendi Games planned to release more In Name Only console action titles. King's Quest would be a console action game with King Graham wielding a huge sword, wearing armor, and doing flips. Space Quest by Escape Factory was to be an Xbox/PS2 action platformer.
    • Another King's Quest was being developed by Silicon Knights on the Unreal Engine.
    • Telltale Games was going to release an episodic King's Quest series.
    • Space Quest 7 was planned to be 3D with a multiplayer mode. The project was put on hold, restarted, then cancelled.
    • Cancelled Leisure Suit Larry games include the 3D Leisure Suit Larry 8: Lust in Space, Leisure Suit Larry: Pocket Party for the N-Gage by TKO-Software, and Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude sequel Leisure Suit Larry: Cocoa Butter for PC, PS2 and Xbox.
    • Al Lowe had plans to remake the rest of the Sierra-era Larry games had the first remake sold well. Sadly, it didn't, which lead to Lowe parting ways with the publisher instead, leaving the rest of the planned remakes in the air.
    • Torin's Passage was to be a series, on the level of Sierra's adventure "____ Quest" series. Knowing this, some of the stuff you see in the game makes a lot more sense.
  • Ultima:
    • Ultima IV: Part II would have been a sequel to Ultima IV (1986).
    • Multi-player Ultima would have been an eight-to-sixteen-player multiplayer strategy game released in 1986-1987. The concept of a multiplayer Ultima game was later revisited in Multima, a multiplayer game using the Ultima VI engine, but that was canceled too.
    • Mythos was to be a precursor to Worlds of Ultima using the Ultima VI engine. It would have featured Caribbean pirates and a Greek-inspired setting and was set to be released around 1990.
    • Arthurian Legends would have been either the third game in the Worlds of Ultima series, or a standalone game. It would have used the Ultima VII engine and, as the name implied, it would be set in a Camelot-type setting.
    • Ultima Underworld III would have featured a new world and protagonist, and would have been released sometime around 1993-1995.
    • Ultima VII Part II was released with quests and scripts cut and Dummied Out content. The cat island, Claw, was supposed to have a Kilrathi pilot crash land on the island and be worshipped as a cat god.
    • Ultima VIII: The Lost Vale was a cancelled expansion for Ultima VIII that would address the Zealan sub-plot, and what was behind the double doors in the Plateau.
    • Ultima Online 2 would have been a 3D "2nd generation MMORPG" to compete with EverQuest. Its name was changed to Ultima Worlds Online: Origin. It would have been released sometime around 2000-2001.
    • Ultima X: Odyssey would have been an MMORPG set on the world of Alucinor, continuing where Ultima IX left off. It would have had more cartoonish graphics and a virtue system.
    • Ultima Resurrection would have been a hack n' slash game for the PSP released around 2005-2006.
  • Valve has a habit of this. What makes them notorious for their extremely long delays is their demand for perfection in their games, as they stated in the commentary for Team Fortress 2. Basically, unless they are happy with how the game is coming out, they will not release it note :
    • Half-Life Gold (Half-Life 1 with the High-Definition Pack and Blue Shift expansion) was set to come out on the Dreamcast. It was even featured on the cover of GamePro and had a strategy guide to Blue Shift. But due to an announcement by Sega that they would be ending production and support of the Dreamcast, the game was never commercially released. The game was eventually leaked onto the Internet, and outside of having Loads and Loads of Loading, it appears to be otherwise complete.
    • Half-Life 2: Episode Three or possibly by now, Half-Life 3: Originally with a release date of Christmas 2007, there's been no trace of it since then. Valve outright refuses to say anything about the game and hardly acknowledges the series exists at all, even going so far as to ignore the 20th anniversary of the series in November 2018. Leaks have confirmed that the game has entered development, been cancelled, and started over several times, with many Valve employees being so exhausted by the development cycle that they no longer want to work on it. It doesn't help that in March 2015, founder Gabe Newell has more or less confirmed none of Valve's senior staff actually want to devote the company's efforts and time to focused single-player game development. And with the news of Half-Life chief writer Marc Laidlaw's retirement from the company at the start of 2016 as well as co-writer Chet Faliszek's resignation in mid-2017, it was believed that the game had been quietly shelved altogether in favor of Steam and hardware development. However, the 2020 release of Half-Life: Alyx finally confirmed some sort of follow-up to Episode 2's ending, revitalizing the community's hope for the end of the trilogy.
    • Valve promised that Left 4 Dead would receive frequent updates like Team Fortress 2. After seeing all the problems in the gameplay that Left 4 Dead had and what needed to be fixed, Valve most likely would have to change and patch so many things that they believed it would be better to release a sequel that addresses all the issues. Fans naturally reminded Valve daily about the promise that was broken.
  • Most Virtual Boy games. It was actually going to have a Star Fox and Super Mario Land game. The Virtual Boy had a number of unreleased games:
    • A 3D Tank game by Boss Game Studios, similar to Battlezone.
    • Bound High! by Japan Supply System, a 3D action puzzle game starring Chalvo, the bouncing robot.
    • Donkey Kong Country 2 was going to be released on the Virtual Boy.
    • A Doraemon game by Epoch, based on the manga Doraemon: World of Fairies.
    • Dragon Hopper, a 3D action adventure starring Dorin the dragon.
    • A Faceball game by Bullet-Proof Software, known in Japan as NicoChan Battle or Niko-Chan Battle.
    • A GoldenEye rail shooter or racing game.
    • Interceptor, Proteus Zone, Star Seed, Strange Animal School, and Sundays Point by Coconuts Japan Entertainment.
    • J-league 3D Stadium or J League 3D Stage, a soccer game, and Out of Deathmount or Out of the Deathmount, a shooter or adventure game by J-Wing.
    • A Mahjong game by Vap.
    • Mansion of Insmouse, a localization of Insmouse No Yakata by Be Top.
    • Mario Clash was going to be Mario Bros. VB, and started as a minigame in the cancelled VB Mario Land, known as Mario Adventure.
    • A Mario Kart game, Mario Kart Virtual Cup.
    • A Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers game.
    • Night Landing by POW.
    • Polygo Block, a Japanese version of 3D Tetris.
    • The Puyo Puyo game Puyo Puyo Tsu.
    • Shin Nihon Pro Wrestling Gekitou Densetsu by Tomy, a wrestling game.
    • Signal Tatto.
    • Sora Tobu Henry.
    • VI Racer, a racing game.
    • Virtual Battle Ball by Hect.
    • Virtual Block by Bottom Up, a 3D Breakout-style game.
    • Virtual Bomberman, a 3D Bomberman game.
    • The Star Fox game Virtual Boy StarFox.
    • Virtual Dodgeball by Hect.
    • Virtual Double Yakuman, part of the Double Yakuman series.
    • Virtual Fishing.
    • Virtual Gunman, a Virtua Cop-style FPS by Victor.
    • Virtual Jockey, a jockey game by Right Stuff.
    • Virtual Pro Baseball '95 and the localization, Virtual League Baseball.
    • Wangan Sensen Red City by Asmik and AJN.
    • A Worms game.
    • The F-Zero game Zero Racers.
  • X-COM games Genesis and Alliance were eagerly expected after years of development, but given the various studio shifts that Microprose suffered at the time, they were permanently delayed/cancelled.
  • This is Older Than the NES: the numerous never-released games for the Colecovision are pretty close. Some games, like Chess Challenger and Mr. Turtle, were advertised on the system's box, but never saw release, most likely due to the end of the system's production run in 1984.
  • The developer Zoonami is infamous for this. The studio was founded in 2000, and hyped up to be a major third-party publisher for Nintendo, but its two major projects (a FPS for the GameCube called Game Zero and the rhythm game Funkydilla) were announced but never released.
  • The Zoo Tycoon 2 user-made extension pack "Cretaceous Calamity" was announced years ago and still has no release date. Both that particular UXP and the others by the same group (Mysterious Map Marvels) have a history of trouble and delays.
    • There have been hundreds of UXPs announced for Zoo Tycoon 2, but only roughly five or six UXPs ever released.
  • Golgoth Studio was a French developer founded in 2008 that started with pretty ambitious projects: HD remakes of Joe & Mac and Toki, both supposed to come out in 2010. Every mention of Joe and Mac was quickly removed from their site after nothing more than a couple of character designs was shown, and the Toki remake suffered the same fate: after about five years of promises, they just pulled the plug and removed their whole website. The only game they ever released was the mediocre Magical Drop V for Windows. However, the Toki remake was eventually Saved from Development Hell by Microids, 10 years after the initial announcement.
  • Ocean Software had a French subsidiary that specialized in porting Arcade Games to the Amiga and Atari ST. Ocean France's ports of such games as Cabal, Pang and Toki were generally well-received, and Zero #19 included previews of their upcoming ST/Amiga ports of Hammerin' Harry, Liquid Kids and Snow Bros. At least the Amiga versions of the latter two were completed, yet Ocean, apparently due to licensing problems, decided to cancel all of them and close Ocean France. The Amiga versions of Liquid Kids and Snow Bros were unearthed and leaked onto the Internet many years later.
  • Psygnosis, somewhere in between the Sony buyout and the launch of the PlayStation, canceled most of their upcoming Mega Drive games.
    • The developers of Res-Q soon leaked copies of their otherwise unreleased game. A prototype of Bill's Tomato Game, ported from the Amiga by the same team, was later recovered.
    • Whizz ended up being released on the Amiga by Flair after Psygnosis dropped it, followed by multiple console ports, but not the Mega Drive version, which was supposedly the original.
    • Another Mega Drive game Psygnosis chose not to release was Digital Illusions' all-but-finished Hardcore, whose Amiga version was also canceled.
  • Before focusing entirely on Metroid Prime, developer Retro Studios was working on four GameCube titles: NFL Retro Football, Car Combat or Thunder Rally, Raven Blade, and the tentatively titled Action-Adventure. The engine behind Action-Adventure would be re-used for Metroid Prime.
  • More than half of the games announced by Scavenger, Inc. were never published, no thanks to a shoddy distribution deal with GT Interactive that helped push the company into bankruptcy. Their unreleased games include 4x4 Frenzy, Heavy Machinery, Into the Shadows, Mudkicker and Tarantula.
  • The abrupt closure of Telltale Games put all of their games in development at the time into development limbo, including the second seasons of The Wolf Among Us and Telltale's Game of Thrones, as well as a game based off Stranger Things.
  • Since the advent of online naval combat games involving depictions and/or Anthropomorphic Personifications of real-life naval vessels from World War One and World War II, there has been one specific ship that has been continually teased across multiple games, but has not (so far) graced the limelight as of late: the Aircraft Carrier Shinano, at least to the following games:
    • KanColle was the earliest of the naval battle-themed games to tease the inclusion of her shipgirl form in its growing roster, with its primary developer Kadokawa having already released Alpha Art of her in supplementary materials way back in 2013. Unfortunately, she has yet to make her appearance as of early 2020. Coupled with the successive debut of foreign Navies (currently at Seven, the latest being both the Australian Navy and the Dutch Navy via the 2019 Fall Event), and the introduction of more unique ship variants like the coastal defense ships and escort carriers, for starters, the wait is expected to become longer.
    • World of Warships, meanwhile, had intended to introduce the virtual form of the actual ship (probably as how she was supposed to look like completed), but had to forego her in favor of the current Tier-X Hakuryu from the Closed Beta Testing onward. Problems with Shinano's Alpha form arose from the fact that she was a CV carrying the same tanky Yamato-class hull, which meant that a lot of ships had trouble taking her down in the process.
    • KanColle's current main competitor Azur Lane had teased Shinano's inclusion in the game, thanks to data mining done by fans, AND have made her an important, albeit off-screen character in the Swirling Cherry Blossom event. So far, there has been no word of her official introduction as a playable shipgirl.
  • BEMANI is no stranger to titles failing to manifest.
    • RAP FREAKS was announced for arcades in 1999, but silently cancelled later that year. It would have had players put on gloves to hit pads on the machine and clap in time with the music.
    • A fourth Keyboardmania title had been tentatively announced in 2002 as a PlayStation 2 exclusive title, but nothing ever came of it.
    • Press releases between 2003 and 2004 indicated that Konami was planning on releasing home versions of beatmania 7thMIX and THE FINAL as one package for the PS2, but nothing ever came of it.
    • Karaoke Revolution: BEMANI Series Selection was to be a Japan-only game featuring exclusively songs from the BEMANI franchise. Despite an impressive 70-song track list, the game was cancelled in 2005 due to lack of interest.
    • Otoiroha was a rhythm game shown off at the Japan Amusement Expo 2016 that featured a touch screen and panels that could be slid up and down the cabinet, similar to Sound Voltex's analog dials. After its one location test, nothing was heard of the game for about a year; in late January 2017, its website was pulled from Konami's eAMUSE portal site. At JAEPO note  2017, it was stated that while the game isn't officially canceled, development is on hold and they're unsure whether or not to continue. No news about it has come out ever since.
    • Rizminance note , a BEMANI arcade game with a soundtrack consisting of anime song remixes/covers, dropped off even harder than Otoiroha did. The game received two location tests in September and November of 2018, but doesn't even have so much as a teaser page up on Konami's website. It was totally absent at JAEPO 2019, with no mention of the game beyond some of its remixes being brought to Jubeat. The hardware used for the game's machines would go on to be repurposed for NEW pop'n music: Welcome to Wonderland!, which also seems to not be coming — more details below.
    • NEW Popn Music: Welcome to Wonderland! was shown off at JAEPO 2020. In addition to recycling hardware from Rizminance, the game featured smaller buttons, a touchscreen, and a completely new art style. It was never seen again after this sole location test, and pop'n games released ever since have steered clear of implementing anything shown in this game.
    • "ULTIMATE MOBILE" versions of beatmania IIDX, Sound Voltex, and DanceDanceRevolution were announced simultaneously in 2019, but the only one to be released so far is beatmania IIDX. Very few details about the other two have been confirmed, and it's unknown whether they're even still in development.

    Video Game Titles: Unofficial Video Games 
  • Chrono Trigger Resurrection (later renamed Chrono Resurrection) was a fully-3D remake of Chrono Trigger. It became vaporware after being given a cease-and-desist by Square-Enix. Only a demo portion of the start of the game was ever released. A later fan project was Chrono Trigger: Crimson Echoes, with 35 hours of gameplay and eleven endings. This game was also abandoned due to a cease and desist.
  • Crash Bandicoot: Crystal's Wrath is a Crash Bandicoot fan-game that has been overhauled several times over the span of 4+ years. It was originally a Twinsanity-style open world platformer but has since changed into a 2D.5 sidescroller.
  • The two Indiana Jones fangames Indiana Jones and the Crown of Solomon and Indiana Jones and the Fountain of Youth were both in development for a few years and had their own demos published in 2006, but since nothing new has come of them since then and their websites were shut down long ago it's safe to safe neither game will be released.
  • Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis was going to receive a fan made remastered version titled Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis Special Edition, but the project was stopped due to a cease and desist.
  • Over the years several people have tried to make a Fan Remake of King's Quest IV: The Perils of Rosella but every attempt seems to have been canceled due to time restraints and other commitments, and every website from the developers seem to be lost.
  • Development of the largely anticipated and long-awaited fan project My Little Pony: Fighting Is Magic was terminated by a cease and desist order from Hasbro. A massive backlash immediately ensued, and in doing so increased rumors that Hasbro is attempting to take more control of the show. After about two and a half years after the original project was given the Cease and Desist, Mane 6, the developers of Fighting Is Magic have since formed their own company and created a new fighting game, Them's Fightin' Herds, with characters created by Lauren Faust herself.
  • The Silver Lining is an episodic Fan Sequel to the King's Quest series. Episode four was released in 2011 and a fifth and final episode has been promised, but no news of the game on its website has been published since 2019.
  • Sonic 2 HD, a Fan Remake of Sonic the Hedgehog 2, had potential when the alpha stages of the remake were shown to the public with brand new shiny HD graphics and remixed music, and quickly became very popular. However, after months of releasing no further information of the game after the Emerald Hill Zone release, the development team decided to come out and say that L0ST, the main programmer of the game, had refused to stay in contact with the team, put DRM in the demo to stop people from trying to look at the game's code (which is actually based off of Sonic 2's) and spent ages trying to make the game suit his vision perfectly, even going so far as to replace other members' work if he wasn't pleased with it. Eventually, the team got sick of his antics and cancelled the project. It's back on a new engine, with concept for more levels released.
  • An unofficial continuation/recreation of Sonic X-treme known as Project-S (which was supervised by one of Sonic Xtremes original staff members Chris Senn) began production in 2006, only for the fangame to cease production four years later, much like its (spritual) predecessor.
  • Spyro: Myths Awaken was a fan-game made to act as an unofficial Spyro 4, done in a retraux style just like the original trilogy. It was hit with a cease-and-desist. The team reworked it as Zera: Myths Awaken.
  • ZethN64's Ura Zelda Game Mod never came out. It was supposed to add back in several cut elements from The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, such the Fairy Fountain and Sky Temple. Over time, it developed into an overly ambitious custom story with concepts that the Nintendo 64 couldn't even handle. The project ended up being cancelled after a few years of development.

    Video Game Systems and Peripherals 
  • The Aladdin Deck Enhancer NES accessory was announced with several games that went unreleased, including Bee 52, Big Nose The Caveman, CJ's Elephant Antics, Dreamworld Pogie, F16 Renegade, Go! Dizzy Go!, Metal Man, Mig 29 Soviet Fighter, Stunt Kids, Team Sports Basketball, and The Ultimate Stuntman, though some games ended up released on regular cartridges.
  • The Phantom game console has earned numerous vaporware awards and frequent comments on its auspicious name (as if the entire thing was a practical joke on a massive scale). First announced in 2002 (when its download-only sales model seemed downright insane), it was repeatedly delayed and pushed back until being put on infinite hold in 2006. The design company has since been accused of fraud by the SEC, changed names, and decided to focus on releasing the console's couch-keyboard-and-mouse accessory for other platforms.
  • The Indrema L600 by Indrema Entertainment Systems, an ambitious attempt at a "Linux console" with a completely open development platform and hardware based on PC components, including a built-in DVD player; seriously game-changing specs for 1999. A working prototype was exhibited in early 2000, but the designers couldn't raise the capital needed to mass-produce it and it was overtaken by events when the Xbox and PlayStation 2 were released shortly afterwards.
  • Several Atari projects went unreleased:
    • The Atari Mindlink was going to be a controller for the Atari 2600, designed to be worn by the player while reading forehead movements with infrared sensors, to be able to play the games Bionic Breakthrough, Mind Maze and Telepathy. The peripheral was shown at CES, and after complaints of forehead pain, the peripheral was never released to the public.
    • Atari had plans to release Atari 2500 and Atari 2700 consoles.
    • Atari planned to follow up on the Atari 7800 with the Atari Panther console.
    • Atari planned to release a handheld system, the Atari Cosmos.
    • Atari planned to follow up the Atari Jaguar with the Atari Jaguar II.
    • The Atari Jaguar was planned to have a model combining the CD attachment with the console. This may never have gone further than mock-ups, with the Jaguar's CD add-on selling poorly and Atari Corp. approaching bankruptcy at the time.
  • During the era of the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Nintendo and Sony were going to partner up and develop a console add-on for the system. On the day of Nintendo's stockholders meeting, Nintendo went through the proposed contract that Sony wrote up and discovered something shocking; if Nintendo agreed to Sony's contract, Sony would have full rights to all of Nintendo's intellectual properties, allowing them to create games based on Nintendo's franchises without Nintendo's permission. The discovery convinced Nintendo to tear up the contract and make a surprise announcement that they would be partnering with Phillips to create a different CD-based console, which itself was also scrapped.note  The last-second snub led Sony to create the PlayStation years later. Who knows how things would have been if Nintendo stuck to partnering with Sony.
    • The oft-forgotten step between the SNES CD-ROM and the PlayStation involves Sega. Sega of America were in serious discussions with Sony to make a new Sega console using CD-ROMs, but Sega of Japan nixed the deal, in part due to acrimony between SoA and SoJ over SoA's greater success in marketing consoles and games.
  • A little before launching the Saturn, Sega was planning a system called the "Neptune", an integrated Mega Drive/Genesis and 32X which would've played both Genesis and 32X games. This was scrapped when it became apparent how absurd releasing this would be (as indeed releasing the 32X already had been) when the Sega Saturn was just around the corner and also likely out of fear that it would interfere with the Saturn's momentum. That system's surprise launch in May 1995 (a mere six months after the 32X launched) probably didn't help. It still lives in spirit, though.
    • The incident repeated with the Sega Pluto, a low-cost version of the Saturn meant to attempt to help salvage the Saturn's market share and reputation in the US. Ultimately cancelled because, well, Bernie Stolar was still head honcho of Sega of America and he hated the Saturn, period. Additionally, work on the Sega Dreamcast progressed in parallel and had moved far along enough to be released as a product.
  • Before there was the Nintendo DS, Sega was going to release its own handheld system with touchscreen... back in the mid-90s, as the successor to the Game Gear. Needless to say, the idea was way too ahead of its time, as development costs forced Sega to abandon its plans.
  • Microsoft had considered creating a portable gaming device to compete with the Nintendo DS and PlayStation Portable, with the working title of "Xboy". Despite the idea constantly coming up, it was ultimately shelved due to them being unable to focus on developing both the Xbox 360 and a potential handheld system.
  • The "McLaren" Windows Phone was going to support over thirty games specifically in development for the system, including games based on Conker and Killer Instinct.
  • The highly publishized "Sega VR" headset for the Sega Genesis [1], which would have made it the first console to get VR, two decades before the PlayStation 4. The product even almost made it to production. Before release, it was pushed back to December 1993, before being delayed to late 1994, and subsequently cancelled. Unfortunately, for this one, it was Sega's own lawyers that pushed for the cancellation in the last minute: The reason given for its cancellation was that it was too dangerous: people could walk around while playing and accidentally injure themselves. The actual reason was that test results said prolonged usage made people dizzy and gave them headaches: The Genesis wasn't fast enough to handle VR without lagging and was causing motion sickness and disorientation in the beta participants, the latter further causing headaches and nausea. It was especially dangerous to children, who would almost always get motion sickness and headaches. One wonders if this would still be the case if the product was released after the 32X which was released the next year.
  • The ApeXtreme by Apex Digital was a CD and DVD based console planned for 2004 that went unreleased.
  • Hasbro's Control Vision was a console that used VHS tapes. It became vaporware at the last minute. Just two months before its launch in 1988, the VRAM chip needed for the console had its price raised from $30 per chip to $80. This would mean the Control Vision would need to be priced at $300. Hasbro decided to cancel the console because it couldn't compete against the much cheaper Nintendo Entertainment System (which sold at only $100). Two games from the console, Sewer Shark and Night Trap, stood in limbo until they were released for the Sega CD in 1992.
  • Panasonic planned to release a portable game console called Jungle.
  • Via planned to release the Mo MA Eve handheld game console.
  • Ericsson planned to release the Red Jade handheld console.
  • The GamePark XGP or XGP Extreme Game Player was going to be a portable video game system.
  • The Ultravision Video Arcade System was going to be a combination game console and 10 inch color TV.
  • Many of the designs invented by Active Enterprises were doomed to fail from the start, but the most ambitious of these was their planned portable gaming console, the Action Gamemaster: Conceived as a massive, foot-and-a-half wide beast with a 3.2 inch screen, this system would not only be compatible with proprietary game discs (including "killer app" Cheetahmen 3), but it would also house an expansion port that would accommodate cartridges for the Nintendo Entertainment System, the Super Nintendo and the Sega Genesis, and it could also be used as a portable television set, with a projected price point of 500 dollars. It seems as though Active were truly ahead of their time with their idea for a multisystem portable — many of the Gamemaster's features now seem to have manifested in Sony's PlayStation Portable instead. Or in Nvidia's case, the Shield Portable, which had a similar controller-with-screen form factor, sans the 18-inch device footprint.
  • Richard DaLuz's Super Genintari console was going to feature multiplatform support and be bigger than the original Xbox.
  • The Panasonic M2 console was to have been the 64-bit successor to the 3DO Interactive Multiplayer. The 3DO Company was working on an add-on to the original console and a standalone version, with the Working Title 3DO II or Bulldog, becoming the 3DO M2, before being sold to Matsushita/Panasonic, to be released as the Matsushita M2 or Panasonic M2, and it was canceled very close to its announced 1997 release. Konami did release a few arcade games based on the M2 architecture (namely Battle Tryst, Polystars, Evil Night, Heat of Eleven '98 and Total Vice).
    • The console was not released aside from some prototypes, and its technology was integrated into FZ-21S and FZ-35S multimedia players, ATM machines, and coffee machines.
    • Clayfighter 63⅓ was planned as Clayfighter 3 on the SNES and M2 console, before being released on the N64. A planned PlayStation version, Clay Fighter X-Treme, was also cancelled.
    • The game D2 was going to be released for the M2 console, and ended up being released on the Sega Dreamcast.
    • Sega was planning to develop software for the console, including Virtua Fighter 3.
    • IMSA World Championship, known as IMSA Racing, was a cancelled racing game on the M2.
  • As buyers were shifting from consoles to computers during The Great Video Game Crash of 1983, Colecovision promised an expansion module that would essentially turn their console into an Adam computer in an attempt to draw in customers. It never went past the prototype stage.
  • The Wii Vitality Sensor was shown at E3 2009, but was barely discussed since then. Some video game journalists started doubting that the project was ever real and the sensor itself was just a mock up shown because Nintendo didn't have anything new or interesting to reveal at E3 that year. In 2013, the Vitality Sensor was finally brought up by Nintendo... to reveal it was cancelled. It was a real, planned product, but was scrapped because there was too large a portion of test users that the sensor could not read. Oddly, its trademark was renewed in December of 2014.
  • In 2014 Nintendo announced an as-yet still mysterious "quality of life" platform that will be focused on health and fitness and incorporate technology that can detect the user's body in some way. It's been speculated that the vitality sensor project may have morphed into this over time. Said platform has also not surfaced as of 2021.
  • The Konix Multisystem was a British console developed in the late 80s. Originally created as an advanced peripheral, Konix decided to go further with the project to create a 16-bit computer to compete with the Amiga. The system was then pushed back several times, up to Fall of 1990 due to a very troubled production and employees not receiving their wages. When Konix bankrupted without a finished computer, the project was scrapped.
  • In 2001, Mad Catz planned to release the Bioforce controller, a Playstation 2 controller that sent shock waves to the player. It was shown off at trade shows but never made it to release (likely due to health worries).
  • The Retro Video Game System and its successor the Coleco Chameleon (unrelated to the Colecovision besides the name) were two consoles that were meant to "bring back" cartridge-based gaming. They were supposed to be able to clone numerous 8-bit and 16-bit consoles as well as play retraux indie games. After a lot of criticism and controversy, both consoles ended up being canned during their concept stages.
  • Rumors of a Game Boy successor began leaking in 1996. Nintendo later said it would be released at the end of 1997, but it ultimately never came out and instead they released the Game Boy Pocket. Eventually the similar Game Boy Advance would come out in 2001. In 2009 Nintendo released a photographs of the handheld, which was codenamed "Project Atlantis". It started development in 1995 but was canned in 1998 because it was too bulky and expensive to produce at the time.
  • Sharkwire Online was a Nintendo 64 device that allowed the user to visit a special Sharkwire website, even without having an internet connection. There were plans for a Playstation version but it never came out.
  • The "Game Eye" was a Game Boy Advance Spiritual Successor to the Game Boy Camera. It was due to a mid-2000s release but never came out.
  • It's known that Tails' Skypatrol (which wasn't always a Sonic title) started out development for an unknown cancelled handheld similar to a Game Boy.

    Other Computing 
  • The Trope Namer was Microsoft's Unix-based operating system (OS), Xenix. Although this OS actually existed and came to market, the term was coined by a Microsoft engineer in 1982 because AT&Tnote  started selling its own version of the OS called System V and Microsoft lost interest in Xenix, transferring its team to a new joint project with IBM, OS/2note . Although Microsoft wound up selling its rights to the Santa Cruz Operation, at first they didn't make it clear what their plans for Xenix were.
  • There are projects in application and system software that are older still. The most notorious example is Project Xanadu, the first computer hypertext system and intended to catalog all human knowledge: begun in 1960, still arguably in development, although its creator seemed to have abandoned it for a time before announcing that it had been Saved from Development Hell and was now finished (primarily by him lowering his extremely high expectations so he could say it was finished in his lifetime).
  • The most notorious vaporware project of all time was Ovation, an office suitenote  that was to compete against the industry leader of the day, Lotus 1-2-3. The parent company, Ovation Technologies, was founded in 1983, and got as far as raising several million dollars in capital, securing a distribution deal with Tandy Corporation which included co-marketing with their Tandy 2000 line of computers, and building several demonstrations (including a high-profile press conference at Manhattan's Windows on the World restaurant) that impressed both the industry and the public. There just was one problem: the company never released an actual product and went bankrupt exactly one year after it was founded. Ovation was the Trope Codifier of "software which is hyped to the public but never actually gets to be launched", and with implications of intentional fraud.
  • A Filipino tech company named BiTMICRO Networks announced a processor named in honour of Jose Rizal. Despite some rather optimistic press coverage brimming of national pride and an official statement from the government, not much has been announced about it except it would be developed in the Philippines, and there wasn't any word about the architecture to be used either. Five years later and yet little if any news has surfaced since, and it didn't help that BiTMICRO apparently didn't have any previous experience with processor development, at best being a cloud solutions provider.
  • The GNU Hurd operating system kernel. Once meant to replace the kernel of UNIX, it long ago lost that honor to Linux, which it is now championed to replace... someday. Meanwhile, the constellation of open-source software meant to be built around it has been Linux-based for decades now and will have to be ported back to its official "home" system if the thing ever sees release. For some perspective, development on the Hurd began in 1984 and the first actual, installable OS based on it came out in 2003; there is yet to be a release of even beta quality. Comparatively, Linux started out in 1991 and had been marked as stable since 1994.
  • ReactOS, an attempt to create a drop-in replacement for Windows, has been in development since 1998- although the project still does put out nightly builds, the nightly builds are more than often badly broken. The project started as FreeWin95 in 1996 and aimed to create an open-source OS capable of running Windows 95 programs, but then went silent and came back in its current form in 1998, with the aim changed to create an open-source OS capable of running Windows NT 4 programs. As of March 2016, the project has only hit 0.4, which the team still considers late-alpha- the team will only change the software state to beta when 0.5 hits. And it took them a whole decade to get from 0.3 to 0.4. Granted, the project was plagued by multiple issues including lack of manpower, several allegations that the project had used stolen Microsoft code which stalled the project for almost a year as the codes are audited, and perpetually-moving goalposts (as of current, the program has mostly Windows 2000 level compatibility. The team at one point aimed for XP level compatibility by first final release, only to be forced to change it to Windows 7 level by their sponsors and supporters in 2018).
  • The SCEE display was vastly superior in both energy efficiency and color reproduction compared to CRTs, LCDs, and Plasma, and was supposed to enter mass-production "real soon now" — since 1989. Besides production problems, a lawsuit slowed things down in the mid-2000s, followed by the crash of 2008, and Canon finally threw in the towel in 2010 when LED-LCD screens obsoleted the technology.
  • The macOS was infamous for its replacement projects that either got stuck in Development Hell (Taligent and Copland) or never even started (Gershwin). In 1996, while on the verge of bankruptcy, Apple finally gave up and bought NeXTSTEP to get Steve Jobs back, which eventually became Mac OS X and helped save the company.
  • Microsoft had several of these in Windows' lifespan, these include:
    • Windows Neptune — The consumer version of Windows 2000 with a few features that were instead shifted to XP. Windows Neptune would've required more resources than most consumers had at the time.
    • Not an operating system, but a subsystem to revolutionize data storage, search and retrieval (in other words greatly speed them up): Object File System (OFS). It was started in 1990 or 91 as a part of next-generation operating system, Cairo. While Cairo itself was never released, most of its components were gradually released as part of other MS products: Windows NT, Windows 95, MS SQL Server... Except OFS. The project was shelved, but eventually revisited, now as an extension to MS SQL Server. Then as a part of MS Exchange. Then for Windows Longhorn (as WinFS). According to The Other Wiki in 1994-2007 it was cancelled and resurrected no less than 6 times, but haven't been heard from since 2009. All its incarnations have contributed to other MS products, but the desired goal was never met. Since people still would like their computers to instantly find their photos, videos, music, books, text documents and whatever else they edit and store there, by only a vague description, the project is bound to come back yet again.
    • In the early 1990s there was what was codenamed Omega, Microsoft's first attempt at a desktop database. Developers worked on it for a year and a half during which snafus accumulated atop delays, and were further beset by complications, with everybody increasingly getting on each others' nerves. Until finally one meeting with the company's CEO led to this exchange:
    Tod Neilson: OK, Bill, why do you want recruiting?
    Gates: Because I want to find out what fucking colleges we recruited you guys from and tell them not to fucking recruit there any more because they clearly produce fucking idiots!
    • The project was canceled shortly thereafter, with instructions to throw out all the code and start from scratch. From the ashes rose the phoenix that is today Access.
  • Holographic Versatile Discs, developed from 2004-2008 with the intent of being used for archival storage. With an impressive 100GB (which is Blu-Ray's maximum storage space) to up to 6TB of storage, it sounded really good. But there's still nothing on the market and with a $15,000 drive and $180 per disk cost along with its original developer going up in smoke, it doesn't look like it's coming out soon.
  • Transformers Universe by Jagex was going to be a free online... something. It went from MMO to a kind of 'team brawl' all the while insisting that it would be Free-to-Play. The game managed to get to Open Beta. The game got far enough to start putting out 'Founders Packs' ahead of release, then both followers and Jagex seemed to realise just how much of the game you'd end up paying for — especially considering how expensive the Founders Packs were.
    • The game even started to put out profiles for the original characters that you would be able to fight as, and many Role-Players on the forum noticed striking similarities between them and their Role-Play characters. The two most blatant were 'Hotwire', a Decepticon Medic who ripped off an RPer called Hotwire, also a Decepticon Medic (the only true difference was the gender), and 'Monsoon', an Autobot warrior whose skills, weapons, personality and even appearance ripped off another RPer's character called Gearchange.

    Other 
  • The Vector must be the ultimate in automotive vaporware. Ten years from concept Vector W2, in 1978, to a production run of seventeen W8s. Then fourteen M12s made in 1996. Then another ten years roll by before the WX-8 prototype turns up at the LA motorshow. As of 2018, the WX-8 itself remains vaporware, though they claim it's still in development.
  • NASA have tons of them, such as the X-33/Venture Star, which was supposed to replace the space shuttle, and Project Constellation/Space Launch System, which after 9 years of development only has a broken full scale model and a bunch of rocket engines.
  • The Moller Skycar. In the words of the SEC when they brought a suit against the company for exaggerating the likelihood of it ever working, "As of late 2002, MI's approximately 40 years of development has resulted in a prototype Skycar capable of hovering about fifteen feet above the ground."
  • Fusion reactors. With a fusion reactor and a glass of water, you could power a city like New York for 3 years. Research has been conducted since the 1950s, at which time they promised the first commercial fusion reactors by the year 2000. For a time, this was a joke on soc.history.what-if: "Kolker's Law: The estimated time until commercial fusion reactors will arrive remains constant." (This time is also known as a "fusion constant".) In other words, if an expert believed that fusion was 20 years away 20 years ago, he probably still believes it's 20 years away today. Not to say that progress hasn't been made. The advances in superconducting materials and lasers that modern experimental fusion reactors are built around hadn't been made when fusion research started in the '50s and what is now known as the field of plasma physics hadn't even been recognized fully as a discipline unto itself. Partly the reason why development has been so slow is also because fusion is always deemed of being too far away and too difficult to get any near-term returns from an accelerated effort. Presently several countries are involved in national and international scale projects in fusion and plasma control, and interest has grown, but given the timeframes of experimental research in the field, several decades of vaporware are still to be expected.
    • In the same vein, advanced nuclear fission reactors (such as Gen IV reactors) may fall in this. Their benefits are great: they produce more energy with less fuel and produce less dangerous waste. Some designs eat the waste of the widely deployed Gen II reactors and some are essentially meltdown proof. But with events like Three Mile Island, Chernobyl, and Fukushima, it seems the prospects of nuclear energy have gone down the tubes in several countries.
      • In the case of one Gen IV candidate, the Molten Salt Reactor, this is especially frustrating because a working prototype of a MSR was built and run for 5 years in the mid '60s (from 1964 until '69) called the Molten Salt Reactor Experiment. It didn't generate any electricity with its heat but managed to prove that the concept was sound and orders of magnitude more fuel-efficient than the reactors still in use today that use solid fuel pellets (<1% efficient to the MSR's >90% fuel efficiency). The planned follow up Molten Salt Breeder Reactor (the more recently proposed Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor, or LFTR (pronounced "lifter") for short, is essentially the MSBR brought into the 21st century.) was never built.
  • Chyoo, an adult create-a-storynote  website run by the same folks who run Literotica, has been advertising "Chyoo 3.0" for several years. In fact, their front page has a notice claiming Chyoo 3.0 will be released in a few months... that dates back to 2006. In actuality, the Literotica owners have apparently lost all interest in maintaining Chyoo. Lack of quality content probably has much to do with it. It could also be because these stories are a dime a dozen on Writing.Com.
  • Remember all that noise about the "All American Basketball Alliance", an all-white basketball league that was supposed to start in 2010? Remember Don "Moose" Lewis' comments about fundamental basketball and wanting to take the street out of it, plus a few other rather inflammatory remarks? Suffice to say that this interview did not make him very many friends, and the proposal went nowhere.
  • Immortal's Handbook, a third-party splatbook for Dungeons & Dragons. For awhile, the front page, at a glance, seemed to be 60% "look at all the cool stuff that I'm making!" and 39%, apologizing for not updating or releasing anything for years. Then, the website was changed. The new one seems a bit better in that regard, but not by that much.
  • Castle Greyhawk. Dungeons & Dragons fans have been waiting since the mid-'70s for an official release of Gary Gygax's home dungeon. Gary was looking at releasing the complex as early as 1978, but got sucked into the monumental task of writing The Temple of Elemental Evil and released only a few levels. In 1986, just as he had promised the castle again, he was unceremoniously fired as head of TSR. Any hint that Gygax would be releasing new Greyhawk or AD&D material would have sparked a lawsuit. In 2007, however, Gygax announced that he was creating a non-Greyhawk version of his iconic castle. One box set was released, detailing the castle fortress and the first level of the dungeons. Then Gary Gygax died on March 4, 2008.. Co-writer, Jeffrey Talanian was set to complete the project using Gygax's copious notes, but he was fired within six months and the Gygax Games site seems to be all but abandoned. Gygax's original co-writer Rob Kuntz was releasing material from his notebooks, but he has also dropped the project. Finally, a dedicated fan who knew both Gary and Rob and had played in Castle Greyhawk released his own version of the dungeons starting on level 2, which is probably the closest we will ever get to the actual Castle Greyhawk.
  • Speaking of D&D, the 4th edition never received a promised Virtual Tabletop app. With a new edition now replacing the 4th, don't expect to ever see it.
  • Furaffinity.net, an art gallery that caters to the Furry Fandom, is notorious for promising new features and updates that never materialize:
    • Shortly after the site launched in 2006, a rewrite of the entire site was announced (dubbed Ferrox) and that it would be in closed beta "soon". A year later, another announcement was made that a new version of Ferrox was in development. That project was eventually shelved two years later.
    • Another project which would overhaul the UI has seen similar delays, first announced in 2007, having mock-up previews released in 2009, and finally setting a deadline of Summer 2011 for completion, which didn't happen. Dozens of other planned features have gone through similar treatment.
    • Another attempt at re-coding the site was announced in early 2014, an open-source project called Phoenix. There is essentially one person working on the project, and it's all on GitHub so you can follow along with the long periods of nothing happening.
    • Around the same time, they announced new plans to overhaul the existing site's UI, which led some to believe even the site's owner doesn't have faith in the "Phoenix" recode ever going anywhere.
  • The Guitar Hero and Rock Band fansite ScoreHero announced a giant (and much needed) update in November 2008. Almost immediately it was shoved on to the back burner for seven months when Harmonix turned up to talk about their idea for the nascent Rock Band Network; several mods and developers signed up to help with the rewrite and were promptly stonewalled when looking for information (RBN had the main admin tied up in NDAs). Said developers were subsequently somewhat disgruntled when the RBN announcement was made, and it's tied up JC's time so much now that the big update hasn't gotten off the back burner since (and, with Rhythm Games on their way out, doesn't look likely to).
  • The web video Let's Play Sonic the Hedgehog 2: Special Edition is about a completely fictional vaporware game: an Updated Re-release of Sonic the Hedgehog 2 which never saw the light of day because its console (the Sega CD 32X) reached the end of its lifespan. Docfuture, the creator of the video, claims he received his copy of the mysterious game from an uncle, who bought the disc from Chinese bootleggers.
  • There is a joke in construction that could easily apply to any field: any building project will take longer than you expect even if you take this principle into account.
  • The final episode of the Julius Saves the Mushroom Kingdom series of Flash cartoons ("When Julius Comes Marching Home").
  • The New United States Football League, AKA "USFL 2.0". Announced in 2008, with an array of notable football names attached to it as potential coaches and team and league execs. It was slated to launch fully in Spring 2012. That date was then pushed back to 2015 (and that date was later stated as being "overly ambitious"), with still no cities in place as team hosts as of Summer 2017; and a rival league (A-11 Football — formed in the wake of NUSFL's first failure to launch) looking to launch first and steal their thunder, even going so far as to swipe several original USFL team names for their league.note 
  • The whole point of the Keit-Ai meme is to be a joke vaporware concept for an anime that doesn't exist yet it has somehow spawned a webcomic, fan fiction, fan art, music videos, a mock anime preview, the first anime episode, and a host of other memetic content.
  • The tabletop game Far West was supposed to be an epic transmedia project, with an intended release date in late 2011. Mid-2018 saw an announcement that it was being revised with a different system, the first Kickstarter update in something like a year. Those few backers who still think they'll ever see it have stopped expecting a transmedia project and would be satisfied with any media project.
  • Given all of the technological innovation by Apple in the last decade, it seems odd that the one product that stumped them is AirPower, an advanced Qi charger that can charge three devices at once. Apple announced the device in September 2017 and stated it would be released within a few months, but by the end of 2018 Apple had given no updates and removed all mentions of AirPower from their website, though iPhone manuals still mention it. Some reports claim overheating issues caused the delay, and Apple officially cancelled the device in March 2019.

Alternative Title(s): Vapourware, Duke Nukem Wait Forever

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