Final Fantasy Tactics creator Yasumi Matsuno had excited fans with the idea of Kickstarter Unsung Story: Tale of the Guardians. After gathering more than $600,000 to make the game, developer Playdek has hit one speedbump after another. The game was supposed to be out in summer 2015, then was delayed indefinitely, with little updates from the developer in-between. Now, Playdek is out, and a new developer is supposedly coming to the rescue.
In an update to backers on the Kickstarter site, Playdek announced that they would no longer be associated with the project, and that all rights and assets had been sold to developer and publisher Little Orbit. "They believe strongly the game can be an amazing Tactics RPG, and they are excited to carry on and bring Matsuno’s story to life," the company said. "They will be bringing you project news from this point on to update everyone on their plans for the game."
If you are unfamiliar with the new owners of the IP, such titles as Barbie & Her Sisters Puppy Rescue and Monster High: New Ghoul in School may not instill a lot of confidence, although there is an Adventure Time game that got some positive buzz. CEO Matthew Scott said in a separate note to backers that he understands the confusion. "Inevitably many of you will google us, and you may have your doubts - which is okay," he said. "This project has struggled. But give us a little time, and hopefully we'll surprise you."
While promising to carry Matsuno's vision for the game through as original intended, Scott said that Little Orbit will be tossing out much of what Playdek did to start 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."
But, the good news is that the company promises to honor all backer rewards at no extra cost. "I am a gamer at heart, and my first love has always been turn-based tactics games," Scott said. "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."
He said that he won't make any "lofty promises," knowing that backers and fans have already been burned by a project that is more than two years late. "We will be following up as soon as possible with more details on the game and our progress," he concluded, which should encourage fans who were frustrated with the long bouts of silence that Playdek was prone to.
Despite the understandable skepticism that fans may feel at the moment, the fact that Little Orbit thought enough of buy a project that would have likely otherwise died. At least now there is some hope that Unsung Story will see a release, which has better odds now than yesterday.