Dead Space 4 has been cancelled.
The game, which was in pre-production, has been axed following poor sales of Dead Space 3. EA took the decision to cancel the game after sales of it’s predecessor did not meet expectations, VideoGamer reports. The site say that a source close to the situation says that a team at Visceral Montreal – part of Visceral Games – were tasked with developing prototypes and mock-ups for the title, and also working on ideas for the game’s narrative.
However, EA bosses visited the studio and informed them that the project was off, and also that the company was being restructured. It is also being rumoured that Visceral Montreal has been closed following the decision.
Along with this news, more information has come to light regarding development of Dead Space 3, with the VideoGamer source claiming that the game was almost cancelled during development, as well as continuous cuts made to its budget during production. Weapon-specific ammo was switched for generic ammo late in the development process, reportedly as a method for introducing the game’s micro-transactions, which have caused controversy since their inception.
It is also being alleged that EA previously advised Visceral that Dead Space 3 needed to “appeal to a wider audience” than the series’ previous titles, and was told to focus on action rather than horror in order to make the game feel more like Mass Effect.
This tallies up with what EA Labels president Frank Gibeau said last year in an interview with CVG, also suggesting that Dead Space 3 would need to sell around five million copies in order for the series to survive.
“In general we’re thinking about how we make this a more broadly appealing franchise…Ultimately you need to get to audience sizes of around five million to really continue to invest in an IP like Dead Space.”
Official sales figures for Dead Space 3 are not yet available, though it is believed that they are not near what was expected, and if we go by what Gibeau said previously as well as today’s news, it appears it did hit the five million.
When contacted for comment about Dead Space 4‘s cancellation, EA only stated that they “do not comment on rumour and speculation”.