Playdek is washing their hands of the game.
The seemingly never ending saga of Unsung Story: Tales of the Guardians, continues on. Today backers learned that the Kickstarter funded project has been sold off to indie publisher/developer Little Orbit, which is responsible for games such as Adventure Time: Finn and Jake Investigation, Kung Fu Panda: Showdown of Legendary Legends and Barbie & Her Sisters: Puppy Rescue.
The game, which was funded back in January of 2014, was supposed to be a spiritual successor to tactical role-playing games such as Final Fantasy: Tactics and Tactics Orge, and featured a story that was constructed by the man behind those two famed games, Yasumi Matsuno.
The project, which was just able to clear its funding in time before it ended, has gone through a tumultuous development marred with controversy. Namely, going months without any updates (and subsequent calls by backers for refunds), and complaints over a perceived focus on Unsung Story’s PvP mode, rather than the story-driven game players were anticipating.
While there probably won’t be any fans mourning Playdek’s lack of involvement going forward, the sale of the property to a company whose portfolio is perhaps as different as could possibly be from Matsuno’s creations probably isn’t going to inspire a lot of hope either. To their credit, Little Orbit acknowledges that there will be some doubt, and got out in front of it with the following message to backers of the game:
“Inevitably many of you will google us, and you may have your doubts – which is okay. This project has struggled. But give us a little time, and hopefully we’ll surprise you.
I am a gamer at heart, and my first love has always been turn-based tactics games. I met the Playdek team a couple months ago and got a firsthand look at the amazing work from Yasumi Matsuno. Simply put, this game needs to exist, so I am excited to be taking this project over and helping deliver it to the community.” said Matthew Scott CEO of Little Orbit
In the same message, Scott acknowledges that the game has gone far off course from its previous vision as a single-player, story-driven game, and dropped this bomb:
“First the bad news.. Little Orbit is starting from scratch. We have spent hours going through the Kickstarter comments and researching all of the project materials, and I feel the backers have made one thing clear – we need to focus on the original single player game and Matsuno’s design that was promoted during the campaign. And that is exactly what we are going to do. At this point, our primary goal is to separate the years of modifications and changes that were made while Playdek attempted to deliver something to their backers.”
Although classified as bad news by Little Orbit, if by some miracle Unsung Story actually releases one day, and this decision to start over results in a game that resembles what backers originally thought they were getting, it’s probably better to wait some more instead of getting some PvP game. Right? Maybe.
We’ll continue to follow Unsung Story: Tales of the Guardians, as long as Little Orbit continues to provide updates.