If you thought that mysterious survival horror game Abandoned by Blue Box Game Studios couldn’t get any more enigmatic, wait until you hear this. The game was thrust back into public consciousness this week, but not because the developer had anything to show off. No, instead, information was quietly removed from the studio’s Twitter account, leading to rumors that the still-unseen project was canceled. Apparently, that’s not true. Abandoned isn’t canceled, just “changing,” according to studio founder Hasan Kahraman. This game’s saga gives me horrendous whiplash.
We gotta back up first. Twitter user and noted Souls YouTuber Lance McDonald tweeted on March 31 that Blue Box “deleted most tweets” describing specific future plans for Abandoned. This apparently included an explanation for why the PlayStation 5 app, which still only contains a brief teaser, weighed in at around 5GB and news that a demo would be playable “soon.” This erasure led the industry to speculate about Abandoned since Blue Box hadn’t tweeted about the game since last December.
Well, all that changed after McDonald’s tweet blew up and several reports from outlets like Eurogamer and Game Informer began hitting the internet.
On March 31, the same day McDonald’s tweet caught folks’ attention, Blue Box posted a statement to Twitter clarifying Abandoned’s status. The studio said rumors of the game’s cancellation were “false” and claimed it’s working on a reveal and prologue, which would be a”standalone game” with a low price tag expected to last an hour or two for the PS5 app. Both have been delayed because the team “underestimated” its development roadmap.
“We are aware of your frustration and we deeply, sincerely apologize for this,” Blue Box said to the world’s smallest violin. “We will continue to work on the game and will notify you when we are ready. Our sincere apologies.”
Ever since, Blue Box has been playing defense for Abandoned. Both IGN and Colin Moriarty of Sacred Symbols interviewed Kahraman about the game, its development, and the recent takedown stream on Twitter. When speaking to IGN, Kahraman said the old content was removed because “some of the concept has changed” and he thought it would be better to delete what’s now irrelevant. Kahraman later told Sacred Symbols that it has become a “serious project.”
Kotaku has reached out to Blue Box Game Studios and Sony for comment.
What all of this means, who knows. Blue Box Game Studios has admitted that Abandoned was announced too soon and that it’s an ambitious, personal project for Kahraman and the Dutch-based developer. Maybe we’ll see some gameplay, a CG trailer, or something more substantive than just the teaser in the PS5 app. Blue Box has started asking fans whether it should show off development footage of the prologue, so here’s hoping something gets revealed soon. In the meantime, don’t send death threats.