The developer of upcoming horror game Abandoned has denied claims that the release is a “scam,” after controversy surrounding the launch of the PS5 Abandoned trailers app and the studios’ previous history with failed game releases. The game has been the subject of much speculation, with many believing it to secretly be a Silent Hill revival, or a horror project with developer Hideo Kojima on board. Blue Box Game Studios has repeatedly denied these claims.
While Abandoned was at one point looking like one of the most hotly-anticipated horror games of the year, the release of the Abandoned trailers app has left many fans disappointed and angry with the developer. The PS5-exclusive app was delayed multiple times, and when finally released, left a bitter taste in the mouths of many with a five-second teaser trailer previously shown by the developer. Social media posts that outlined the Abandoned studio’s troubled history with game launches then went viral, revealing that Blue Box has a slew of previously-announced games that have never been released dating back to 2015, including canceled Kickstarters, deleted websites, and removed apps.
Blue Box founder Hasan Kahraman has now responded to claims that the studio is “scamming” people in relation to previous failed game launches. Speaking with NME, Kahraman opened up about the belief that Blue Box is using games to secure funds without planning to release the titles, referencing one of the studio’s previously canceled games. Denying the rumors and questioning their logic, he told the publication:
“With Rewind we did a Kickstarter – then we had a private investor, and the game got canceled a year later because we needed more funds. People are saying that we used that to keep the funds… but that doesn’t make any sense because the funds would then be returned to the investor, right? If you don’t return it then it becomes a debt. An investor isn’t going to say ‘Well, here’s the money – if it doesn’t work out, just keep it.’ It doesn’t work that way! I’m just trying to figure out – how are we scammers?”
Kahraman is aiming to win back favor with players suspicious of Abandoned, telling IGN that a previous horror from Blue Box, The Haunting: Blood Water Curse, will be completed and released for free ahead of Abandoned. Those who have purchased the Early Access version will be offered a free Abandoned bundle.
Whether or not a free game release will be enough to appease players remains to be seen. As well as concern over whether or not Abandoned will ever launch, many have expressed frustration over the Silent Hill theories, which could harm the release and its fanbase. Following its announcement earlier this year, Abandoned quickly drew comparisons to Silent Hill with many expecting the title to be confirmed as a new addition to the dormant series. However, Blue Box has insisted it’s an indie developer with no ties to the IP, its owner Konami, or Kojima. Despite this, many believe the claims are false, accusing the company of promoting the game on social media with multiple hints to Konami, including a blurred photo reminiscent of Metal Gear Solid, and what many believed to be a Silent Hill reference.
It’s not clear if Abandoned is on track for its previously announced 2021 release, with the exact nature of the game still shrouded in mystery. Blue Box has seemingly backtracked on claims the title is a survival horror, instead calling Abandoned a shooter horror. The Abandoned trailers app should reveal more information, including three trailers and two gameplay demos, in the coming weeks. Speculation and controversy around the game should come to a head when the game finally releases.