Scalebound Director Addresses Cancellation and Rumors He's Taking Time Off

Platinum Games has released a statement addressing the cancellation of its Xbox One and PC exclusive Scalebound. Chief executive Kenichi Sato expressed his disappointment but highlighted a number of the studio’s upcoming games that it hopes fans will enjoy.

“We’re sorry to say that on January 9, 2017, Microsoft Studios announced the cancellation of Scalebound,” the statement begins. “We are very disappointed things ended up this way, especially since we know many of our fans were looking forward to this game as much as we were.

“Going forward, we will strive to continue delivering high-quality games to you, starting with NieR: Automata in March, and including products like Granblue Fantasy Project Re:Link and Lost Order in the future.”

Bayonetta director Hideki Kamiya was leading Scalebound’s development. Around the time the cancellation was revealed, rumors suggested that Kamiya would be taking some time off for his mental health. However, Kamiya has indicating this is not the case in a series of Twitter posts.

As you may have already heard, Scalebound has unfortunately been canceled. I’m very sorry to everyone who was looking forward to this game.

— 神谷英樹 Hideki Kamiya (@PG_kamiya) January 11, 2017

Sorry to bring you such bad news at the start of the year. All I can do for you is to promise to keep delivering fun games.

— 神谷英樹 Hideki Kamiya (@PG_kamiya) January 11, 2017

I’ll work extra hard to never have to let you down like this again, so I hope you will keep watching over us in the future too.

— 神谷英樹 Hideki Kamiya (@PG_kamiya) January 11, 2017

Thanx for your lots of messages!!

— 神谷英樹 Hideki Kamiya (@PG_kamiya) January 11, 2017

And…I took time off for my mental health? …Me!?

No way.

— 神谷英樹 Hideki Kamiya (@PG_kamiya) January 11, 2017

Microsoft officially confirmed Scalebound’s cancellation on January 9, saying it was the result of a “careful deliberation” process. The game has since been removed from Xbox.com and videos of it are no longer available on the Xbox YouTube page.

Head of Xbox Phil Spencer later said the decision to cancel Scalebound was a “difficult” one, but added he believes the result is “better [for] Xbox gamers.”

Platinum has still not clarified whether it plans to continue developing the title separate from Microsoft. The next game from Platinum, Nier: Automata, launches for PS4 on March 7 and then on PC later in 2017. A demo for the game is available now.

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Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD: “Broken Promises” Review

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The robot apocalypse is finally here.

Full spoilers for Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD continue below.

Like the first arc of Season 4 was “Ghost Rider,” so the second arc is “L.M.D.,” with the threat of Aida and her incognito androids looming large. But with Robbie Reyes in the rearview mirror (at least for now), Agents of SHIELD can put all its focus into the storyline it’s teased since the end of Season 3: the L.M.D.-apocalypse.

Ghost Rider was a great hook for the first arc of Agents of SHIELD’s fourth season and the series did a good job with the character. Coming off that strong run of episodes, it’s impressive that SHIELD transitioned as smoothly and seamlessly as it did from the supernatural to a more science-focused robot showdown.

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Or is it really the end of times, like Mack keeps anticipating? Part of what makes the transition to the robots-gone-bad storyline work so well is that Agents of SHIELD repeatedly proves that it’s aware that so many of these storylines have been done before. The running joke of Mack calling out the various ’80s robo-pocalypse movies works on multiple levels; not only does it prove that SHIELD understands it’s treading into been-done material, but also works as a promise that it’s taking the story in another direction.

And since one of the places this storyline has been done recently was in another corner of the MCU (*cough* Avengers: Age of Ultron), Agents of SHIELD really does need to make this L.M.D. storyline pop. That’s why it was so rewarding to see the payoff for Aida’s turn toward humanity work on all levels, thanks to Mallory Jansen’s great performance and also some solid storytelling backing it up.

It also offered Ming-Na Wen some great room to stretch her acting muscles as May’s L.M.D. counterpart. It was smart to let the audience in on that secret at the end of last season, because then the viewer can appreciate even more how Wen is playing the character. Learning in this episode that May 2.0 seemingly is unaware of her L.M.D. nature makes the performance even more interesting.

Marvel's Agents of SHIELD: "Broken Promises"  Review

Mallory Jansen and John Hannah in Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD

But SHIELD’s return wouldn’t have worked as well as it did if the parallel storyline about Senator Ellen Nadeer and her newly Inhuman brother Vijay. It’s a familiar refrain in robots-vs-humans films, especially in recent years, that it’s the humans who are the real monsters. Both the Aida storyline and the Inhuman one worked in conjunction with that, with the kicker for both being that it’s the humans who are up to no good.

If this episode of Agents of SHIELD was one of Mack and Yo-Yo’s beloved end-of-the-world robot films, then the L.M.D. threat really would have ended when they beheaded the rogue Aida — roll the credits, as Mack quipped. But as much as the May stinger at the end of the Season 4 fall finale offered a nice hook into this next story arc, the reveal that Radcliffe was behind Aida’s actions and the May L.M.D. is a far meatier cliffhanger. It proves that for all Coulson & co. thought the Darkhold irrevocably changed Aida, the person who was really changed by the temptation is Radcliffe. That not only makes Aida more of a sympathetic character, but also makes one hope that the show digs deeper into whether or not Aida truly is as human as Radcliffe suggested to Fitz. Now that is an interesting take on the familiar robot threat.

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Simmons notes during this storyline that it’s welcome to have Daisy back by her side, and it’s as welcome for her as a character as it is for the audience. This transition from Season 4 arcs has its characters looking forward instead of back, which helps the momentum of the storytelling continue moving forward. It’s also welcome that the storytelling is consolidating; instead of adding a new big threat (though Senator Nadeer foreshadowed an unseen evil person would soon be revealed), Agents of SHIELD focused on the storylines it already has in motion.

Oh, and what is the deal with Senator Nadeer’s brother returning back to the Terrigenesis cocoon after his sister killed him at the end of the episode? As much as that storyline really worked in tandem with this week’s L.M.D. arc, I’m intrigued to see how they continue to compliment one another throughout the rest of this season.

The Verdict

Agents of SHIELD transitions away from the supernatural Ghost Rider storyline and into the more science-based L.M.D. arc with ease, presenting one of its strongest episodes of the season. The Aida and Senator Nadeer storylines compliment themselves exceptionally well, and with Daisy back on the team and not knowing which character may or may not be an imposter, SHIELD’s Season 4 winter premiere is a great way to kick off its new storyline.