Namco Bandai fires BottleRocket

Publisher abruptly removes San Diego-based studio from Splatterhouse project, passing development duties to Afro Samurai team.

A messy situation is brewing for Namco Bandai and BottleRocket Entertainment's Splatterhouse. Following online reports over the weekend, Namco Bandai has confirmed that BottleRocket has been removed from the project, though the publisher still plans to release the game for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 this year.

"We have decided to part ways with BottleRocket Entertainment, but we are committed to bringing Splatterhouse to the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 later this year," a Namco Bandai spokesperson told gaming blog Kotaku. "At this time, we are not ready to discuss specific development details about the game and wish BottleRocket the best of luck in their future endeavors."

Splatterhouse is a reenvisioning of Namco's gory TurboGrafx-16 beat-'em-up of the same name. It features an original storyline by comic-book scribe Gordon Rennie (Judge Dredd, Necronauts), wherein a college student in search of his kidnapped girlfriend happens upon a mask that confers great power--and an insatiable bloodlust.

Development on the game was reportedly on track to wrap by early March, making Namco Bandai's move all the more unexpected. Kotaku's sources indicate that the publisher has handed over Splatterhouse's reins to the same team behind Afro Samurai, which received a decent critical reaction upon release for the Xbox 360 and PS3 last month.

Neither Namco Bandai nor BottleRocket had responded to GameSpot's own requests for comment as of press time.

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24 comments
suprsolider
suprsolider

What the hell? God damn it, I have waited for 15 years for this game God damn it Namco, what the hell? Jesus F christ, leave Bottle Rocket alone. Give it back to them right god damn now. Seriously, from the trailers it looked great. Afro Samurai game sucked. God, I have waited through Soul Calibur,countless Tekken games,crappy Pac Man games, all to get a new Splatterhouse. I even purchased the games on VC, even the crappy Turbo port which I can't stand for even 5 minutes, just to show support for Splatterhouse. This is how I get repaid, a kick in the balls.

stike22
stike22

damn....well so long as it gets released this year....I do hope this game plays well...too many remakes have turned out rubbish and its terrible because most these games could be turned into something brilliant. All I want to see is the bosses...Biggyman in 3D and the end boss...hopefully this game will turn out well, its still early so anything is possible but what I would give to see a new trailer.

jknight5422
jknight5422

bummer. I've seen Afro Samurai & that looks awful. Guess this game is going to stink, if AS is any indication.

buft
buft

i dont care who makes it as long as one of my all time faves gets a decent remake. i wonder what happened though

Amir29
Amir29

Hmmm... How exactly are they supposed to release by the end of this year? Sounds like very short dev time. Splatterhouse was one of the most fun TG16 games I played. I hope they don't screw this one up.

taylormadederek
taylormadederek

The game would have been crap either way. You can look at it and tell that the gameplay is weak. Thanks for coming out. Now where is my Bioshock 2?

snarple_basic
snarple_basic

JayQproductions that looks better then a dreamcast game... To my eyes it doesn't look bad at all. But yea I'm guessing the gameplay might have been under Namco's expectations. I hope they can make sure this game doens't end up being bad. I use to really like playing the old Splatterhouse games, and I hope they throw in the arcade version of the 1st game.

kono11
kono11

Oh. I think there's a new game called Bottle Rocket.

JayQproductions
JayQproductions

this game looks like it should have been on the dreamcast, i loved splatterhouse and was happy to hear they where bringing the franchise back but this is the worst way to bring it back, as an ugly, straight to the discount bin, piece of garbage.

RAVEZero
RAVEZero

Oh, dammit...if they blow this, we're gonna be left wondering how it would have been if BottleRocket stayed. I see no good coming from this.

GeigerdolylWodd
GeigerdolylWodd

CorruptGamerGX Posted Feb 9, 2009 6:29 pm CT Publisher abruptly removes San Diego-based studio from Splatterhouse project, passing development duties to Afro Samurai team. Uh oh...

(LOL) Heh heh heh HEH! HAH

adragen
adragen

Sucks for botteRocket, looks like they'll have to rework their site...

Blue-Sky
Blue-Sky

I read from an interview with on of BR's employees about how the Afro Samurai guys came to help them out with the game and only made things worst...now they are going to get all the credit for development.

Ripper_TV
Ripper_TV

Sounds like an absurd. How bad this will drag on now?

viewtiful_jay
viewtiful_jay

Having seen the trailer that came out last week, this game looked pretty damn rough. And I think Namco was shooting for a March/April release date. I guess they weren't happy with the progress being made and decided to clean house. Not sure how the Afro Samurai team will do, but I think it looked like a turd and can only end up as a polished turd.

DrKill09
DrKill09

****... I hope the game still turns out well. Wonder what this was all about?

AxeltheCold
AxeltheCold

lol i give this game a 2 out of 5 just for trying

Guzthon
Guzthon

Oh no! Will Splatterhouse´s graphics be cell-shaded just like Afro Samurai? This will be not only BAD but WORSE! Also, the game release will delay between 2009 and 2010. Bad move Namco-Bandai. Next time, call some development studio from Japan to make a game.

sonicwhip
sonicwhip

does the releasing of this studio have anything to do with the economy?

child_of_lileth
child_of_lileth

I didn't have high expectations for this remake to begin with. Now that I've read this, I have none. Why do they always have to ruin my favorite series like this? I just hope it goes the way of the Vectorman remake and they just give up on it all together since there's no way it could turn out good now.

Valen_Ca
Valen_Ca

Oh yeah, this is going to end well for Splatterhouse.

RockmanSRD
RockmanSRD

That must suck to be dropped from a project like that... Oh wait... That must suck (for the game) to be handed off to that development team. Hopefully the game still ends up pretty cool.