Comic book fans expect a certain level of quality from superhero video games thanks to the success of titles like Marvel’s Spider-Man and Rocksteady’s Arkham trilogy. But 10 years ago, the developers at Avalanche Studios wanted to see if Iron Man could headline his own open-world adventure. The Swedish studio, best known for launching the Just Cause franchise, worked on the project for two years before it was suddenly cancelled in 2012. Now, Avalanche co-founder Christofer Sundberg is opening up about what happened behind the scenes.
At the time, Tony Stark had only headlined a pair of video games based on Marvel Studios’ first two Iron Man movies, neither of which were well-received by critics. So the character was due for a virtual redemption story, especially one unconnected to his appearances in the MCU. Unfortunately, Sundberg claims that Disney’s “company politics” got in the way.
“I was a mess by the end,” Sundberg recently told MinnMax (via Game Informer). “Shortening development time, increasing budgets. We would have to hire 70-80 people to the team that I would have had the responsibility to find a new project for, but the development time was shortened down so much. It would have broken the studio completely if we agreed to that.”
Sundberg said the game’s open-world mechanics would have allowed players to “just take off and fly anywhere” they wanted. The developers were also putting a lot of focus on melee combat. Aside from his repulsor blasts, Iron Man also would have been able to punch characters through walls. But in the end, Sundberg feels that everything worked out the way it was supposed to.
“At the end of a project, when the team is scaling down, that’s when you find [a] new project,” added Sundberg. “With one year of development time cut from the original plan, I had one year less to find a new project for a big development team which would have been impossible. And hiring all those developers would have been a nightmare. So it was for the best.”
Would you like to have seen an Iron Man game from Avalanche Studios? Let us know in the comment section below!
Recommended Reading: Iron Man by Fraction & Larroca: The Complete Collection Vol. 1
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