The folks at OtherSide Entertainment have been working on a long-awaited System Shock sequel for a few years now. System Shock 3 was due to release some time after the upcoming System Shock remake, which is being handled by a separate studio. Unfortunately, the sequel may now be shelved, as the studio has reportedly run into a financial road block.
The issue starts off with Starbreeze, which previously held the publishing rights for System Shock 3. Starbreeze began selling off assets and restructuring its studios after suffering some hefty losses, the most notable of which was the financial flop of Overkill’s The Walking Dead. OtherSide Entertainment paid to regain the publishing rights to the game, but now the studio is seemingly facing troubles of its own, with reports indicating that nobody is working on the game right now.
As reported by Video Game Chronicle, several key staff members have left OtherSide recently, including System Shock 3’s writer, director, senior designer, lead programmer, QA lead, senior environment artist and others. These big departures date back as far as June 2019.
According to one former developer, the System Shock 3 team is “no longer employed” at OtherSide. The developer also noted that while the project was falling behind schedule, they think that the team could have still “drlivered something interesting with some fresh and innovative gameplay” had Starbreeze not gone into financial crisis.
Aside from that, excitement for the sequel also drove the studio to go through “a lot of expensive experimentation”, which the small development team could not keep up with. With the resources they had, it was unlikely that System Shock 3 could compete with current immersive sims.
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KitGuru Says: The System Shock franchise still carries a lot of weight, so there would have been high expectations for a revival/sequel. Unfortunately, it sounds like OtherSide wasn’t properly equipped for the challenge. Of course, the studio hasn’t officially announced a cancellation yet, so there is still a chance that another publisher steps in and gives the game the boost it needs.