How Haze hurt TimeSplitters 4's chances of existing

Remember Haze? You'll be forgiven if you can't recall the critically-panned PS3-exclusive shooter from 2008. It was the last game to come from Free Radical Design, before being transformed into Crytek UK.

Haze's failure ultimately hurt the prospects of a long-requested fan project: TimeSplitters 4. Free Radical had successfully launched three games in the series, but publishers couldn't help but be concerned after the game's disastrous release.

Former employee Steve Ellis told GamesTM (via Joystiq) about the company's struggle to get TS4 made. He noted that publishers "would ask what happened with Haze. We were the company that made a series of high-rated shooters and then we had released Haze, which wasn't as well received. This worried them."

Haze wasn't the only reason TS4 was denied a greenlight. The franchise was never a tremendous sales success either, and marketing the title would prove to be difficult. "The unanimous opinion among all publishers that we pitched TimeSplitters 4 to is that you can't market a game that is based around a diverse set of characters and environments – you need a clear and easily communicated marketing message, and TimeSplitters doesn't have one."