Abandoned PS5 app launch was a "big disaster," admits Blue Box chief

Abandoned PS5 exclusive
(Image credit: Sony / Blue Box Games Studios)

Abandoned director Hasan Kahraman has called the game's PS5 app launch "a really big disaster" in a new interview with NME (opens in new tab).

The long-awaited release of the Abandoned PS5 app did not go well. Initially planned to go live last Tuesday, the so-called "Realtime Experience" app was delayed several days due to technical challenges before it landed with a deafening thud. Blue Box's promise of a new trailer - not to mention one that supported PS5 features like 3D audio and haptic feedback - fizzled as players were greeted by a non-descript black template filled with empty boxes.

Instead of a fancy new trailer, we got a standard clip that we'd seen before in a previously released trailer. Despite the premise of the app being its ability to deliver a 4K/60 FPS experience with DualSense support, there was an odd disclaimer that "All content is rendered in 3D images and therefore not a high-quality video." Folks were understandably upset, but Kahraman says it was crucial to get the app out as quickly as possible, however lacking as it is.

"Basically, we had to cut out some footage from the opening teaser and I knew that it wasn't a good idea to use the same footage that we had on Twitter and put in there because it’s literally just four seconds of footage and it doesn't give much," Kahraman admits. "But we needed to do this because people wanted to have a patch, right? That was our first priority – just get the patch out there because we will be adding more content later."

Kahraman here again cites vague technical hurdles for the delay but goes one step further to say the game's use of Unreal Engine 5 early access could be partially to blame for the whole mess.

"It started with engine issues when we had the patch delay and we couldn’t really resolve that," he said. "We weren't alone – we had some other teams working with that so, it got really out of hand. Maybe it's because we use Unreal Engine 5, which is in early access, which is not really recommended for a project like this. But we did it anyway because we needed the features that it had."

Regardless, "the launch didn't go well," Kahraman repeats. "But definitely in due time, we'll add more content to it and people will get to see that."

Next in line for Abandoned is a new cinematic trailer followed by a playable prologue. Kahraman says the trailer is coming "very soon" - possibly at GamesCom - with the playable prologue to follow a "short time after."

In the meantime, here are the best horror games available now.

After scoring a degree in English from ASU, I worked as a copy editor while freelancing for places like SFX Magazine, Screen Rant, Game Revolution, and MMORPG on the side. Now, as GamesRadar's west coast Staff Writer, I'm responsible for managing the site's western regional executive branch, AKA my apartment, and writing about whatever horror game I'm too afraid to finish.