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Silicon Knights prototyped Eternal Darkness 2 before troubles, canned games listed

Wednesday, 12th December 2012 09:16 GMT By Dave Cook

Too Human developer Silicon Knights was developing a string of intriguing games before it ran into trouble. Get the list and a collection of concept art from canned games below.

NeoGAF member Mama Robotnik has researched Silicon Knights thoroughly using information already out there in the public domain and has acquired a list of cancelled projects at the studio, as well as a batch of concept art for games such as Eternal Darkness 2 and Too Human: Rise of the Giants.

Mama Robotnik writes, “Silicon Knights are close to dead, if not dead already. They owe Epic millions of dollars, and are legally obligated to destroy all of their unsold games and source code. They reportedly have five employees, maybe even less – even the company IT Manager and Chief Operating Officer are gone.

“They have ascended from a small indie Amiga developer, to a champion of cinematic games. They have transitioned from being a close ally of Nintendo’s most senior leadership, to being associated with a string of sub-par and cancelled games.

“They have gone from Eternal Darkness – developed with input from Shigeru Miyamoto himself – to secretly funnelling staff from a doomed game to desperately assemble a prototype for Eternal Darkness II.”

Here is a list of unearthed Silicon Knights projects that have been cancelled:

  • The Pillars of Nosgoth (eventually became Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain)
  • Legacy of Kain (Saturn)
  • “Kain 2″
  • Too Human (PSX)
  • Too Human (Saturn)
  • Eternal Darkness (N64)
  • Too Human (Gamecube)
  • Too Human: Rise of the Giants
  • Too Human 3
  • Silent Hill: The Box
  • King’s Quest
  • The Crucible
  • The Sandman
  • Siren in the Maelstrom
  • Eternal Darkness 2

The Pillars of Nosgoth was said to have been conceptualised by Silicon Knights’ Dennis Dyack in collaboration with Crystal Dynamics, but for whatever reason the latter assumed control over development. However, Mama Robotnik’s thread is peppered with early concept art of Kain and other characters that made the final cut.

Such as:

Mama Robotnik says of the crumbled relationship between Silicon Knights and Crystal Dynamics, “The development of Blood Omen : Legacy of Kain is often alluded to, but rarely spoke about by either Silicon Knights or Crystal Dynamics –a consequence of the litigation surrounding the game.

“With Blood Omen, Silicon Knights began and ended their relationship with Crystal Dynamics – a one-game collaboration that would result in a critically-acclaimed product, a successful IP with a devoted following, and a bitter feud between the studios that was never fully understood to outside parties. Both sides have refused to discuss what exactly happened.”

Eternal Darkness 2 is another game often requested by gamers, and as it happens, it did enter the prototype stage at Silicon Knights during development of the critically-panned X-Men: Destiny.

Mama Robotnik cites a Kotaku report in which Silicon Knights sources state that X-Men: Destiny was just seen a job for Dyack to get through before working on Eternal Darkness 2 fully. Sources claim that a demo was completed but never revealed.

Concept art found on a Silicon Knights artist’s portfolio page points to Eternal Darkness 2:

We’ve got a full gallery of the concept art below, but if you are interested in the unseen backstory behind Silicon Knight’s demise, I suggested you check out the NeoGAF report. it’s properly fascinating stuff, and too big to cram in here.

There is also an interesting section about the second Too Human game, Too Human: Rise of the Giants, along with this piece of concept art:

It was said to be a game about revenge, according to Dyack. The company has recently been legally ordered to recall and destroy all unsold copies of its Unreal Engine 3 titles, following a long and bitter law suit with Epic Games. Find out what happened here.

Finally here are some piece of concept art from Silent Hill: The Box – a project that has been called ‘convoluted’ by sources in the NeoGAF report:

Thanks Eurogamer.

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7 Comments

  1. The Auracle

    I was a fan of Too Human and I thought the game as a series held promise. Dyack didn’t do himself a lot of favours by running his mouth, I admit… but part of me felt like he and Silicon Knights were made an example of by way of spiteful game reviews. The Epic lawsuit has proven to be the final nail in the coffin and that’s really sad because in a gaming world where most are clamouring for something new and exciting, Silicon Knights were a developer that was always up for that challenge and delivered on occasion.

    Bloody hell… that reads like a eulogy. Ah well. Fuck it. Thanks for the great memories, Silicon Knights. I hope you bounce back in some way, shape, or form.

    #1 2 years ago
  2. KrazyKraut

    Played Eternal Darkness (one of my fave games of all time) and started with Too Human last week. Also a great game. I am sad that this happend. Hope they will return one day and learn from their (his) mistakes.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. Ireland Michael

    Sad to see all the lost chances and opportunities here, but Silicon Kinghts was a victim of its own dire mistakes and too many interfering egos.

    At this point, much like Rare, Bullfrog, Westwood Studios, Origin Systems, Looking Glass Technologies, and many others besides, I think it’s best if we remember them for their classics instead of holding out for some miracle recovery that’s never going to happen.

    Let them rest in the past where they belong.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. Fin

    Luv Eternal Darkness :(

    Denis Dyack’s a prick though.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. DuckOfDestiny

    A Silent Hill game by Silicon Knights sounds promising.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. Phoenixblight

    Silicon Knights are dead as dead can be. There will be no coming back. They only have 4-5 employees left.

    Silicon Knights just kept making bad decisions one after another this gen starting with Too Human than the lawsuit against epic followed with them copy and pasting the unreal engine source code including the comments(wtf?). Game over.

    #6 2 years ago
  7. ManuOtaku

    I think iam a part of a minority here, i did like a lot too human, the controls were hard to get use to, but once you got the feeling and the tempo, they became great, i am really hoping for a second game in this series, that would had ironed out the things needed to became a great game, shame that it might never going to happen. ;_;

    #7 2 years ago

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