Is Stargate Worlds, the highly anticipated massively multiplayer online role-playing game set in the Stargate universe, ever going to make it to store shelves?
This week GateWorld asked Stargate executive producer Brad Wright about the current status of the game — and the franchise’s lack of a title in the multi-billion dollar video game industry. (Wright and fellow Stargate executive producer Robert C. Cooper have been serving as creative consultants on the title.)
“We don’t know,” Wright told GateWorld, regarding the future of Stargate Worlds. “It’s a shame. If it doesn’t happen — and, let’s be honest, it should be happening now if it was happening. It’s a shame. It’s a terrible shame.
“They had an opportunity and they got our support, and they obviously had significant funding, and it didn’t happen. It’s kind of a drag for the fans and the time that we invested — what little of it there really was, in comparison to what they did — was still a shame that it was wasted, because it should have happened.”
Stargate Worlds hit financial trouble last year, and according to reports was unable to pay its employees for several months. The anonymous Web site days-since-cheyenne-mountain-employees-have-been-paid.com was taken offline within the last few weeks. The company was seeking new investors when that story broke — an effort which may have faced even greater hurdles when the economy went south in the fall.
Meanwhile, the game’s production studio, Cheyenne Mountain Entertainment, is being sued by a data center business called IO Capital Princess for an unpaid account, according to the Arizona Business Gazette.
Now fans are wondering if the studio will be able to finance the game to its completion, when it can finally see some income from customers.
The official status of Stargate Worlds, according to Cheyenne Mountain, is that the game is still development and will be released as planned. But the fact that it is now April of 2009 and the game is not out — nor has any firm release window been announced — is troubling. The game’s official Web site, however, continues to remain silent on the studio’s financial problems and the widespread concern over the game’s fate.
Should the game fail to reach the market, it will be the second major Stargate video game title to suffer such a fate. Stargate SG-1: The Alliance was in production by Australian developer Perception, but canned in 2005 following a dispute with the publisher over its quality at the beta stage (story). The cast of SG-1 had even lent their voices to that title.
“Now MGM is back in a position where they don’t have a product in that marketplace that they should,” Wright said. “There should be a shiny Stargate game on the shelves right now and there isn’t, and it’s wrong.”