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The Top 7... E3 games that sunk without trace


5) Sonic X-Treme (E3 1996)

The tale of politics and turmoil that surrounded and engulfed this cancelled Sonic game has been well documented, not least by our own Dave Houghton. But as perhaps the biggest game to actually appear at E3 but never get any kind of release, it has to make this list. Ready for the E3 demo reel? Here we go:



When you consider that all games at the time had terrible pop-in, that was actually some pretty advanced stuff. Reflex lens? Sexy lens, more like. And the music that seems to get stuck onto every video of the game on the net has an ethereal quality to it. The tree sprites, the level names (Jade Gully? Hell yeah!) the waterfalls bending around the fish-eye camera... the snippets of footage around the net are fascinating.

But it's like watching a film where you know the lead actor has since died. Quite harrowing really. If the game you see in that clip had been released, Sega might still be in the hardware business. It's a pretty big butterfly to trample if you want to clear the way for your new console like, say... PS2. Yes, I'm suggesting Sony has access to a time machine. Problem? 


Above: E3 2005 had a Sonic X-treme display next to the NiGHTS stand. Imagine walking around that lot

Likelihood of it showing up:  

Despite everything the optimist in me has just said, some journos at the time nonetheless described it as 'awful', so the past 15 years are hardly going to have made it any better. You could say now would be the ideal time to release it, perhaps as a bonus with Sonic Generations, seeing as the 'hog turns 20 this year. A single fish-eye lens moment running through a section of Jade Gully in Sonic Generations would be amazing. But no. Sega would probably rather forget all about this one... and maybe so should we.

 

4: Milo and Kate (E3 2009)

Milo was a boy, Kate was a dog. We never actually saw Kate, which is a pity really. With technology as impressive as this, we probably could have taught her to bite Milo, which would have brought us hours of fun. But there's no denying the concept was a little odd. Milo could see you through Kinect, allowing you to draw pictures of anything you like (sausages, turnips… anything you like, really) and show them to Milo, who would then comment on the colours you'd used. Like wow, y'know?


Above: Jump, Milo! Jump for it, boy! Aaaaaahahahaha! No seriously, you can't have it

Granted, it was hard to tell how much of the amazing tech demo was smoke and how much of it was mirrors, but the fact is, Peter Molyneux was behind it. And when Peter Molyneux is enthusing about something, it's hard not to get excited too.



But eventually, even he had to admit that the world isn't ready for child simulation. It's sad that society isn't innocent enough for Milo to exist in it, but the fact is it just isn't. Milo got cancelled, then resurrected, then cancelled again. We do feel a bit sorry for the (creepy) kid - even virtual children cry over broken promises.

Likelihood of Milo coming back:  

The technology behind him almost certainly will return (and we'd demand a cameo if it did), but Milo himself was bopped on the head from behind, in a scene not dissimilar to that at the end of Of Mice & Men. He currently lies in state in Lionhead's offices while Peter Molyneux stands over him, tinkering with algorithms and variables, no doubt hoping one day his virtual child will live again... and claim back what was rightfully his. THE WORLD.

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E3 Top 7

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20 comments

  • quincytheodore - June 7, 2011 4:52 a.m.

    None of this will be missed, by me at least.
  • Mortified_Cow - June 7, 2011 3:47 a.m.

    With all this E3 stuff I forgot it was Monday. Almost missed out on this Top 7.
  • gilgamesh310 - June 6, 2011 8:44 p.m.

    I don't see why they think so little of the gameplay footage of Eight Days. To me it looks totally brilliant. The cover shooting looks far greater than any cover shooting around today. Movement is so fluid and natural and the interactions with your partner are better than in any other game. I don't know what they were thinking comparing it to Kane and Lynch. I was gutted when I heard that game was cancelled.
  • kor2disturbed - June 6, 2011 7:40 p.m.

    What about "I'm Alive" or maybe it was just called "Alive". What happened to that was it canned?
  • Darkhawk - June 6, 2011 3:27 p.m.

    Seems like MMOs have the hardest time getting released. Gamesradar has more!: http://www.gamesradar.com/f/8-canceled-mmos-that-wouldve-ruled/a-2009062511952762027
  • Reaver_Beaver - June 6, 2011 2:55 p.m.

    I'm suprised that I Am Alive isn't on there, the one earthquake game? Haven't seen anything about that in two years. Regardless, great article! Can't wait to that watching the E3 feeds!
  • Jordo141 - June 6, 2011 2:14 p.m.

    I remember when I first saw the Eight Days trailer and I fell in love with it. The cover system still looks great; and maybe with a year or so to patch up the game it could be great.
  • R_U_Guys_From_British - June 6, 2011 2:11 p.m.

    A real shame that we won't likely ever see The Agency again. Great read.
  • Nap1400 - June 6, 2011 12:09 p.m.

    No one seems to remember that forgotten Kirby game from a while back. Maybe it's just the diehard Kirby fan in me, but I wanted to see that somewhere here...
  • 8bitBaby - June 6, 2011 11:30 a.m.

    man! the adverts on this site are aggressive today. wonder why *smiles slyly* good article. a lot of prerendered silliness. i actually wonder how hard it would be to get a game to run as well and look as sharp as some of the prerendered stuff they try to feed us. maybe it would just take too many man hours, and obviously too much money. oh man. the agency.... yeah. *looks longingly out the window*
  • Mooshon - June 6, 2011 11:29 a.m.

    Still would like them to release Milo as a tech demo. Was always intrigued to see if they actually had anything innovative there.
  • Rhymenocerous - June 6, 2011 11:28 a.m.

    Do you remember that game for ps3 where you played as a cop, and could be good or bad, and take side missions etc? I think it was being developed in Newcastle, and it looked awesome, am tellin ye mate.
  • GunsForShow - June 6, 2011 11:17 a.m.

    I once spent a pretty wild weekend with Jade Gully...
  • AuthorityFigure - June 6, 2011 10:52 a.m.

    Resident Evil Portable? Didn't know about that one at all. If CAPCOM won't talk about, then why should we give a toss?
  • Cyber6x - June 6, 2011 10:28 a.m.

    The Agency reminds me a bit of MAG for some reason. Anyhow, Agent might join this list if it doesn't appear at this E3....
  • insertdisk - June 6, 2011 10:24 a.m.

    The agency looks amazing! The faction based idea is really cool rather than a bunch of sliders on a character
  • DualWieldingIsNotFeasible - June 6, 2011 10:12 a.m.

    I remember seeing that Milo video for the first time and thinking, "Man, maybe this whole kinect thing is gonna turn out to be awesome!" Of course, immediately afterward I thought, "Wait a minute...Peter Molyneux? Shit, this is all lies, isn't it?"
  • 435 - June 6, 2011 9:58 a.m.

    I didn't know they canned The Agency. :<
  • CitizenWolfie - June 6, 2011 9:55 a.m.

    I think the Duke shows that anything is possible...
  • FlyinMX - June 6, 2011 9:35 a.m.

    This looks like an interesting top 7, looking forward to E3!

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