10 Video Games Stuck In Development Hell (That We're STILL Looking Forward To)

Hope springs eternal. Which is handy, because so do these games' development cycles.

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Ghost Story Games

Valve CEO Gabe Newell recently made waves when, in the Half-Life: 25th Anniversary Documentary, he said "late is just for a little while. Suck is forever". As well as echoing one of gaming's most famously misattributed quotes, Newell's comment nailed the current zeitgeist regarding game development: that it's better for developers to take their time over their creations, rather than hammer them out to meet an unforgiving deadline.

For evidence of this sentiment, look no further than the furor surrounding Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III. A hastily assembled rush-job that was given half the development time of its predecessors, MW III ensured that the Modern Warfare reboot trilogy ended with all the grace of a gymnast whose leg bones were replaced with jello.

Given that, we can't help but feel justified in maintaining faith in the following titles. Each game on this list has been trapped in varying depths of development hell (some of these games are sequels that have been stuck in development for longer than it took to create the trilogy that preceded them), but the one thing they all have in common is our unwavering optimism/naive belief that they'll eventually come good.

10. Perfect Dark

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Considering how near-perfect the original Perfect Dark was, it's hard not to look forward to the upcoming reboot despite the many, many factors working against it.

Since its reveal at the 2020 Game Awards, the game has reportedly lost half of its development team, which prompted Microsoft to bring in Crystal Dynamics - the maestros behind the crushingly under-rated Soul Reaver series - to help finish development. Unfortunately, Crystal Dynamics' association with the dysfunctional Embracer Group has seen the studio lose a number of key personnel, which has likely affected the PD reboot's development.

And, of course, there's the small matter that Perfect Dark Zero - the Xbox 360-based prequel - was absolutely abysmal. Caught chasing market trends at the time, Zero's cover-based shooting and 'methodical' (read: clunky and slow-paced) combat was a disastrous downgrade from the original game.

Yet hope still persists.

Sea of Thieves has shown that Rare can still summon the old magic that made them an industry powerhouse in the N64 days, and hopefully everyone involved has learnt from the mistakes of Perfect Dark Zero. Rare work best when going their own way, as opposed to following the market leader, and hopefully the Perfect Dark reboot will see them back at their idiosyncratic best.


Hello! My name's Iain Tayor. I write about video games, wrestling and comic books, and I apparently can't figure out how to set my profile picture correctly.