Another lost game, brought back into existence for modern players. But have players out grown brutally hard run-and-gun games?
Developed by DICE
Published by Strictly Limited Games / Inin Games
Released in 2020
Alongside looking at what was, there seems to be a taste amongst retro enthusiasts for what could have been. A drive to discover what exists in some parallel universe where time or money constraints didn't apply. Online communities have, for many years now, taken unreleased prototypes, finished them and released them for others to play. Perhaps the most famous is 'Star Fox 2' a game that was long considered a lost gem, until Nintendo finally released it officially on the SNES mini. It’s not a lone example of course, especially as games can now be released exclusively digitally with minimal financial risk. Finished games; a developers pride and joy, can now have their time to shine. Plucked from a long abandoned hard drive in a dusty attic and finally offered to enthusiastic players. Months or even years of work no longer only existing on a pile of 3 1/4 inch floppies, at last assembled into an experience that can be enjoyed by many.
Today DICE are best known for the ‘Battlefield’ and ‘Battlefront’ series, however decades ago the developer was starting to get pigeon holed as “the pinball developer”. After finding success with ‘Pinball Dreams’, ‘Fantasies’ and ‘Illusions’, Digital Illusions (as they were then known) wanted to break away from banging tiny metal balls around and believed an action game called ‘Hardcore’ might help them stretch their wings. “Someone knew Joakim [Wejdemar] and he contacted us and said ‘Hey, me and this programmer Bo [Staffan Langrin] are working on a title that’s similar to a ‘Turrican’ game” explains DICE Founder Fredrick Liljegren. “They had a core idea, core functionality, but very little of the game was done”.