UPDATE 28 February 2021: In a statement to GamesRadar+, Google says VGC's report "was inaccurate and reported hearsay as fact" and that VGC's assertions about cancelled Kojima and Yu Suzuki “projects” are not true.
It further added that Google "[doesn't] have anything, nor have announced anything, with Kojima or Yu Sazuki".
Original story follows.
Google's decision to pivot away from first-party game development has reportedly cancelled "dozens" of Stadia game projects, according to a new report.
Google announced it was closing its first-party Stadia Games and Entertainment studios (opens in new tab) earlier this month, abandoning its plans for exclusive games.
At the time, vice president and general manager Phil Harrison didn't specify which "near-term planned games" would survive this closure, but a new report from VGC (opens in new tab) suggests cancelled games include a project by Yu Suzuki, a Journey to the Savage Planet (opens in new tab) sequel, and an episodic horror game from Death Stranding developer, Kojima Productions – leading some to believe this is the cancellation that left Hideo Kojima feeling "pretty pissed" (opens in new tab) last year.
The report also alleges that another partnership with Harmonix "is virtually complete", but complications around music licensing has left the project in limbo, although Harmonix CEO Steve Janiak reportedly disputes this and says the game will come to other platforms if it is unable to release on Stadia.
"Creating best-in-class games from the ground up takes many years and significant investment, and the cost is going up exponentially," Stadia vice president and general manager Phil Harrison said at the time of the announcement.
"Given our focus on building on the proven technology of Stadia as well as deepening our business partnerships, we’ve decided that we will not be investing further in bringing exclusive content from our internal development team SG&E, beyond any near-term planned games."
In related news, during a recent staff Q&A session, Harrison supposedly “pointed specifically to Microsoft’s buying spree and planned acquisition of Bethesda Software (opens in new tab) later this year as one of the factors that had made Google decide to close the book on original game development".
If you’re new to Google’s gaming world, here's everything you need to know about Google Stadia (opens in new tab).