United Front Games releases statement on True Crime: Hong Kong cancellation

Friday, 11th February 2011 18:47 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

United Front Games has released a brief statement regarding the cancellation of True Crime: Hong Kong over on it’s official website.

Here’s the statement:

TRUE CRIME: We are sorry we did not get a chance to complete this project with Activision, but we understand why. We are both committed to doing quality games and nothing less. Maybe we will have a chance to work together in the future, but in the meantime we are setting our creative sights on a different horizon. You can keep up with the latest developments at UFG here on our site.

It was announced earlier in the week during a call to investors that the open world shooter being worked on by the ModNation Racers developer was canceled by Activision.

Thanks, GamePolitics.



  1. Erthazus

    Pathetic to be honest.

    So some studio making shitty Spyro game is creative for ACTI?

    #1 4 years ago
  2. xino

    True Crime did not meet expectations!

    to me it’s just another open world sandbox game:/

    #2 4 years ago
  3. Michael O’Connor

    @2 Unlike you, I actually got to look at this in action behind closed doors. It was looking incredibly slick for an open world game. It was honestly one of the most engaging discussions with developers I’ve ever had in my career. You could tell everyone was excited about in the room, the journalists and developers alike.

    There was a lot of impressive design at work under the hood in this game. It’s downright sad that something like this got cancelled, while that Spyro crap is still being worked on.

    Same old Activision bullshit as always.

    #3 4 years ago
  4. Nozz

    This is a true crime!

    #4 4 years ago
  5. Gekidami

    Wait, was this game being made by the same people who did the other True Crime games?

    I have to ask because they say they’re committed to doing quality games. That wasnt the case with the other True Crime games…

    #5 4 years ago
  6. Michael O’Connor

    @5 No. Their only other game so far was ModNation Racers, which is for all accounts a brilliant game.

    #6 4 years ago
  7. Doz12

    @5 got to agree completely! dont think its going to be a massive loss!

    no matter how much people slate activision they still make some massive money so they must be doing something right!

    #7 4 years ago
  8. sickgamer

    this is bullshit ! :(

    #8 4 years ago
  9. Michael O’Connor

    @7 *points to his post*

    #9 4 years ago
  10. NeoSquall

    @4 I lol’d.

    Back on topic, does anyone know if the studio could release the game under another publisher (like Double Fine did with Brutal Legend) or is UFG a subsidiary of Acti, meaning they can’t breathe without Kotick allowing them?

    #10 4 years ago
  11. Doz12

    @9 yeh i read your post but no offence it may of looked good etc. but if acti think it isnt going to sell then it isnt going to sell. Perhaps there were some major bugs in the full game or something that were proper game breaking who knows?

    #11 4 years ago
  12. Michael O’Connor

    @10 The license for the game belongs to Activision. They could feasibly change the art assets and release it as a completely new game, unless there’s some legal wranglings in the way that would stop them.

    It’s a messy situation no matter how you look at it.

    #12 4 years ago
  13. OlderGamer

    And the worst thing of it is the folks that worked so hard on the game/lost jobs because of it.

    #13 4 years ago
  14. SplatteredHouse

    @8: total and utter. It’s disappointing that there’s no statement addressing the game’s future – this article headline’s a tad misleading (to explain, the topic covered is more related to the developer’s involvement, than the project itself… I am not complaining here, not suggesting it be altered, or criticising, just noting. ;))
    Are we supposed to just figure from that, that all the work that went in to the game’s going to get binned?

    I can think of no other time when a divorce could be seen as cause for celebration moreso, than the dissolution of this odd couple’s union.

    #14 4 years ago
  15. YoungZer0

    Activision, you uselss piece of shit company.

    #15 4 years ago
  16. xino

    typical words of sales men!
    they talk sweet talks like that to get you excited.

    and wtf was that supposed to mean “unlike you”?
    trying to act mr superior over the internet? how’d you know if I wasn’t behind the closed door event as well?:/

    #16 4 years ago
  17. Michael O’Connor

    @16 They played the game live. There was nothing “salemen” about it. I know it’s their job to make the game appealing to consumers, but look at it like this… almost every journalist walked out of the Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock presentation I was at about half ways through it. Nothing about it was appealing.

    During the True Crimes presentation though, many of us were sitting around getting into very passionate discussion about the game with the developers. The game *lookced* incredibly slick and polished, and there was lots of genuine passion from everyone in the room for the game.

    You can only “sell” a game so much. The rest was up to us to judge for ourselves. Good gameplay is good gameplay, no matter how you look at it. There were lots of tricky questions being thrown around by the other journalists in the room, but the devs took it in their stride and showed the goods.

    “how’d you know if I wasn’t behind the closed door event as well?:/”

    Considering you can’t even bother to use the shift key, I find it hard to believe that you might be a journalist. This was a little closed doors presentation of the game I went to at a little known industry event last year. It’s called E3. You may have heard of it.

    You haven’t seen the game being played. I have. So I can say without any shadow of a doubt that it puts me in a far better position to judge the game than you.

    #17 4 years ago
  18. xino

    “Considering you can’t even bother to use the shift key, I find it hard to believe that you might be a journalist. ”

    your ego over the internet makes it your downfall and that is why you will never be better than anyone else!

    And there are lots of fake wanna-be journalist over the internet, some of their grammar are not even that good.

    Hip Hop Gamer proves much and debunks your trash statement, people like you who act ALL TOUGH online, are nothing but single minded people.

    wow…is VG 24/7 really filled up with assholes?
    we have people who constantly attack you, people playing keyboard hero, spam bots and constant trolls!

    Instead of improving the design, we need better security

    #18 4 years ago
  19. DSB

    Plenty of people have seen footage from the game, and plenty of people have been underwhelmed by what they’ve seen.

    Maybe they whipped out some majorly advanced build for you guys that was somehow leagues better than what they were showing the rest of the world, but I think a lot of people agree that it was looking pretty irrelevant from the other side of those closed doors.

    I’ve only seen what was released to the public, so I can’t judge that by any means, but passionate developers and intelligent conversation doesn’t neccesarily make a good game.

    Of course the industry is fickle, but I’m quite sure that Activision aren’t in the business of throwing away sure things two months before release. Clearly there was a reason for that decision.

    #19 4 years ago
  20. Callum

    ^^ +1. If the game look so amazing O’Connor, there had to be a large reason for the game to be scraped. Games don’t get to look like that without significant investment and man hours, I doubt even a cunt-ish corporation like activision would be silly enough to throw it all away without rhyme or reason.

    #20 4 years ago
  21. Michael O’Connor

    @18 Nobody in the real world gives a damn about “internet ego”.

    The only thing I’m attacking your ignorance. You’re judging the quality of a game you had absolutely no hands on experience with and I have.

    It’s fucking *depressing* that Activision would cancel a game of this calibre simply because shittier franchises *cough*CallofDuty*cough* can be sold to every idiot on the planet.

    I’ve seen H.H.G. in real life. He was in the presentation right before the one I was in. He’s an ignoramus. He doesn’t know a damn thing about anything. It’s impossible to have a discussion of any real intelligence witch the guy.

    #21 4 years ago
  22. Callum

    And yes OG, the biggest shame in all of this is of course the job losses. By the sounds of it, they were a passionate group of people to boot.

    I hope they all find work in Canada.

    #22 4 years ago
  23. Michael O’Connor

    @19 and @20 You two are some of the smartest people on this site, so I’m amazed you two have come to similar conclusions considering the company in question that we’re talking about here.

    Surely I don’t need to remind of Activision’s culling of significantly far along in development titles a few years ago? Do Ghostbusters and Brutal Legend ring any bells for you?

    This is not the first time Activision has done this.

    #23 4 years ago
  24. DSB

    Brütal Legend was a terrible mess, though. I’ve been a metalhead for more than a decade, a gamer for longer, I live and breathe that whole scene, but the game was still really terrible, no matter how much good will I threw at it.

    I’m a huge fan of Schafers work leading up to that title, but it was simply an pitiful effort. Which obviously just makes Activisions lawsuit even more absurd.

    Ghostbusters was dropped after the merger as far as I know, and I think the performance of that game vindicated that decision, with 7′s and 8′s in the meta ratings. Of course those kinds of decisions just makes it even stranger that they’re holding on to studios like High Moon and Beenox.

    Mind you that I’m not saying you’re wrong in drawing the conclusion you are, I’m just highly skeptical that that’s really the case.

    We can all agree that Activision aren’t scared of making tough calls and that they don’t do a lot to sugarcoat the fundamental cynicism of big business, but ultimately I don’t think they’re out to fund and then destroy really good things that could earn them money, simply to harvest the tears of passionate developers.

    #24 4 years ago
  25. Michael O’Connor

    @28 The point I’m making is that Activision doesn’t care about quality. At all. They will gladly forego the quality of their games if they think it’s concept has enough appeal to drown customers in it year on year.

    This is just the same crap they pulled during the merger, and based on that interview from earlier, I’m betting it has everything to do with their stocks plummeting. Kotick wants to keep the shareholders happy and line his pocket with even more money. He doesn’t give a flying fuck if people lose their jobs.

    #25 4 years ago
  26. Michael O’Connor


    #26 4 years ago
  27. OlderGamer

    “….. wants to keep the shareholders happy and line his pocket with even more money. He doesn’t give a flying fuck if people lose their jobs.”

    Sad fact of todays world.

    Noone cares what happens later down the road, only how much money can be had right here in the now.

    #27 4 years ago
  28. DSB

    @25 No argument there, but I think any publisher accepts and perhaps encourages varying levels of development, with eyes on the profit.

    You have people making mediocre games that might be expected to make a bit of money, and then you have your big franchises. Honestly I don’t see that as being very different from most other publishers, but perhaps there’s a greater contrast within Activision than at the competitors. Meaning that their high end is seriously high and their low end is seriously low.

    Blizzard and Zampella/West era Infinity Ward were both some of the best in the biz in my opinion, and then you have an array of developers that really just strive for a consolation prize.

    Really though, a succes in the form of True Crime: Hong Kong would only improve their overall performance on the market. Of course investors do love shrinking your business and keeping things manageable like that, but they’re also easily scared by change. Letting go of a game like Guitar Hero leads to an immediate 10% drop, even though it’s been selling next to nothing.

    Fundamentally you aren’t being “succesful” (in the eyes of investors) by cutting studios. The message you’re sending is one of taking “responsibility” by recognizing your own failure and getting rid of it.

    Take a look at other publishers. The various EA Games studios aren’t exactly all golden, but most of them sell well enough, and so they get to keep making mediocre iterations (with FIFA as the exception at the moment). THQ are betting on Kaos Studios even though Fuel of War was pretty bad, and Ubisoft have a studio like Ubisoft Romania making the worlds most broken submarine simulators, but they’re still kept around as well.

    #28 4 years ago
  29. xino


    you are a complete fool!

    “The only thing I’m attacking your ignorance. You’re judging the quality of a game you had absolutely no hands on experience with and I have.”

    So because I saw a piece of shit and didn’t like it…means I am ignorant because I didn’t get to play it!? Grow the fuck up, Sales men AKA Publishers wouldn’t even listen to your overall pitch of your idea game, they just want to listen to the sweet part that would give them a reason WHY they should fund your game and publish it. Which is EXACTLY the thing devs do, like when they showed you the True Crime behind closed doors, they told you things you wanted to hear and to make you defend the game for the last of your life (like you are doing so now!). My ignorance? says much about your nativity if you don’t know wtf is going on.

    Acitivition closed down the game because “it didn’t meet expectations” like I fucking said earlier. Just because you are your naive journalist who saw the game backdoor and were brainwashed by the sales man pitch of the game, you thought the game was amazing and would be amazing!?

    Oh yea..didn’t sales men like Silicon Knights talk sweet talk about Two Humans during EEE3? and everybody started hyping up the game…including yourself? And what happened to the game? it fucking failed!

    “It’s fucking *depressing* that Activision would cancel a game of this calibre simply because shittier franchises *cough*CallofDuty*cough* can be sold to every idiot on the planet.”

    This just proves how much naive you truly are, I really don’t know why you’re even a freaking journalist!
    COD is a popular FPS, wtf does it have to do with True Crime? it’s a COD is a FPS. Look at other games dominating 3rd Person Shooter: Gears, Uncharted, VanQuisH, GTA 4. Obviously Activition had to pull the plug because the game offers nothing new in terms of Features. True Crime is just another regular sandbox title with Asian story strapped on to it.

    “I’ve seen H.H.G. in real life. He was in the presentation right before the one I was in. He’s an ignoramus. He doesn’t know a damn thing about anything. It’s impossible to have a discussion of any real intelligence witch the guy.”

    Yea..I really do think assholes do pollute this website. You judged me about not typing well, look at your spelling mistakes. You’ve met HHG in real life and now you are trying to act bigger than him over the internet. If he really is what you say then I guess he wouldn’t have his own show, tv show or millions of people following him every sunday.

    Face it man…you are a loser. The only way for you to win is to boast online, play the keyboading hero and act superior.
    This was your ultimate downfall and self ownage. Because I don’t know WTF @2 my comment has to do with you seeing the fucking game behind closed door?
    So what if you saw the game before me? doesn’t prove the fact that many dislike the game.

    Same way I can say I’ve played several games in 3D on PS3 and I wasn’t impressed by PS3′s 3D, however I was impressed by 3DS’s glassless 3D.

    #29 4 years ago
  30. Dralen

    @29 That was an impressive speech. Kudos.

    #30 4 years ago
  31. Old MacDonald

    I wish them good luck.

    Xino, stop being such a fucking idiot.

    #31 4 years ago
  32. bigjohn2011

    You people need to stop fighting. I purchase the APB game that they came out for the pc. It was the gayiest and dumbass I have ever played, so if the True Crime game does not get published I’m guessing they had a very good reason for it. I’d rather them cancel it then it come out and me waste $60 on a crapy game.

    #32 4 years ago
  33. dtyk

    I live just 30 min away from the company. I’ve seen the game inhouse once and I really must say that cancelling a game like that really makes me mad.

    120 jobs are lost because of this stupid call.

    #33 4 years ago
  34. back_up

    just find a new publisher and get the job done if IP is not owned by acti

    #34 4 years ago

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