Spector Wanted Deus Ex. Eidos Say No. :(

By Kieron Gillen on November 3rd, 2009 at 7:28 pm.

I admit, this story was at least partially motivated by a desire to post this.

Variety have been interviewing Warren Spector about the Wii-Epic Mickey game and amongst the information that’s irrelevant to THE WORLD’S MIGHTIEST PC GAMING BLOG a couple of facts came to light. Specifically, some more details of the two games which Junction Point were working on before they were acquired. One was a fantasy game, but the other was basically Deus Ex with the serial numbers filed off because Eidos wouldn’t sell the IP to him. “There were and still are ‘Deus Ex’ stories I would like to tell. That story is not done for me,” he says in the interview. Most crucially, the rights to the two games went to Disney with Junction point and aren’t dead. In other words, we could still see Spector’s Bioshock, if you follow my metaphor. As he said to me a few years ago, it’s possible he’ll only work on three more games before he retires. Epic Mickey, Not Deus Ex and incarnating a Fantasy World his wife and he have wanted to do for fifteen years would be a fine way to round off his ludography.

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66 Comments »

  1. Heliocentric says:

    I believe that when artists are planning to retire, in their hearts they have already retired.

    • Kadayi says:

      You do realise that the guy is 54 and has been working in the games industry since the 1980s? In comparison Gabe Newell is 47, and John Carmack a sprightly 39. I’m pretty sure when I’m in my mid 50s I’d probably be thinking about the run down too.

  2. Dyscharge says:

    Hey, at least Activision doesn’t own Deus Ex; we would be in about the 9th game, assuming one was released every year.

    But in all seriousness, if Eidos had been willing to invest money in this idea, the payoff would’ve been humongous, even if the game had been panned by the critics. Maybe offer a spiritual sequel, ala Bioshock.

  3. Mike says:

    Heh. Kinda weird, but gaming’s getting to that age now where really prominent designers will actually be ‘retiring’. Odd thought, though.

  4. blah says:

    Possibly, but if the next Deus Ex-ish type game from Spector is amazing, your belief is over generalizing and meaningless. Then again, PC gaming is dead, so another Deus Ex type game will either fail in the market, or fail with PC gamers.

  5. Railick says:

    Soon they’ll even be dieing!

  6. Railick says:

    <edit> Whoops! Some how double posted. Went into forum to edit (intead of complaining about a lack of edit function as so many people seem to still be doing even though there IS a way to edit posts)
    I would play Not Deus Ex personally.

    Shadowcat “It hammers at my retinas like an evil woodpecker of pure energy”

  7. Vinraith says:

    OK, I guess I’ll be the one to ask: What the hell is “Epic Mickey?”

    • Clovis says:

      It’s what you get when you created Mickey Mouse in an earlier game of Spore (you dirty pirate!), and then he appears in gigantic form later and eats your children.

    • Flint says:

      Upcoming Mickey Mouse game for Wii, starring Mickey in some sort of weird postapocalyptic steampunk world and which looks, rather surprisingly, pretty awesome (based on the concept art anyway).

    • Vinraith says:

      Ah, one of those stick waggling games, no wonder I haven’t noticed it. Thanks.

    • diebroken says:

      “Warren Spector’s Mickey” (see: “American McGee’s Alice”)

      XD

  8. LewieP says:

    You’ve got me wondering what ever happened to EA’s System Shock 3. By the Godfather team.

    Obviously because they are experts at pissing over other peoples fantastic creations.

  9. Lagmint says:

    I’m doing my damndest to not just hate ‘Epic Mickey’ on sight, but Eidos is really pissing me off with almost everything I’ve heard about Deus Ex 3. Again, tried not to be annoying fanboy, but saying things like ‘the combat sucked’ got a shrill screech out of me.

    • whalleywhat says:

      Saying Deus Ex’s combat sucked or the interface was clunky is at least a reasonable criticism, even if I don’t agree with it, but the Deus Ex 3 devs actually said the original didn’t have enough “memorable moments.” I can’t think of many games that have seared themselves into my brain as much as Deus Ex, so it’s pretty clear that they’re talking about a more guided, cinematic experience.

    • diebroken says:

      I love Deus Ex, but I didn’t really like the combat too much. Due to the engine used, it always reminded me of playing UT, maybe it was the animation of NPC running more than anything, I’m not sure. If Deus Ex was created using the Dark Engine (not sure if it could handle the size of DX levels – well not in whole) I think it would be my No.1 game of all time. :)

  10. Railick says:

    Actaully it'd be Mus Ex :P

    Or Deus Mus (God Mouse?)

    • Sobric says:

      I’d go with Deus Mus, mainly because a mouse in the machine is not that an uncommon complaint really.

    • Kenny says:

      It is when it’s been diced up by your cooling fan

  11. Paul says:

    I saw that headline and a tear appeared in my eye.
    I am not kidding.

    And I still feel SO, FUCKING, ANGRY that after 7 years of waiting for the NEXT SPECTOR GAME we get EPIC MICKEY ON WII (and I don’t care that it might be the best game ever, I will not play it anyway).

    GODDAMMIT

    • Lambchops says:

      I’m reserving judgement on Epic Mickey till I’ve played it. I think the art style looks fantastic and the details emerging in previews make it sound pretty interesting – sure it will probably be way too easy but that’s never been a barrier for me if the world sucks me in enough.

      Obviously I’d far rather have “Not Deus Ex” but it seems a tad unfair to malign epic Mickey for being not “Not Deus Ex.”

    • whalleywhat says:

      Grow up.

    • TotalBiscuit says:

      Seconding the notion of Grow Up.

    • Matthew says:

      Thirded.

  12. ZIGS says:

    I’d kill a hobo for another Deus Ex game. DISCLAIMER: I personally have nothing against hobos

  13. Pantsman says:

    I hope I won’t get pilloried for saying so, but I’m quite looking forward to Epic Mickey. Kinda hope that’s just a working title, though.

  14. PHeMoX says:

    Trust me, Warren Spector being out of the loop for the Deus Ex franchise is a good thing. Wasn’t he the one that proposed to go all ‘console style’ with the interface and leave out the RPG / augmentation stuff that made part one so cool??

    Nah, let him be happy with his Mickey game for the Wii. ;)

  15. Jonas says:

    Yes that’s all very well, but I still haven’t heard if he’s found the time to try out The Nameless Mod yet! Certainly this is the most important question!?

    (Sorry.)

    • ZIGS says:

      He’s afraid it might be better than the original :) (it almost is, to be honest).

      So, for when TNM 2?

  16. Railick says:

    Every time I see Warren Spector's name this dude pops in my head
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phil_Spector

    Mainly cause of his awesome hair.

  17. bhlaab says:

    More News to Make you Hate Deus Ex 3

  18. Captain Bland says:

    Pretty much nothing goes right for the Montreal team huh? Now the internet hates them even more for ‘robbing’ Spector of the chance to make another Deus Ex game.

  19. The Pink Ninja says:

    Actually I think I’d prefer a spiritual successor to Deus Ex than an actual sequel.

    The only sequels I really want are for long dead games: Dungeon Keeper, Theme Hospital and Freespace to name the most pressing ones.

    • invisiblejesus says:

      I’d honestly prefer a remastered version of Deus Ex to a sequel. I’ve got Deus Ex on such a pedestal that it would be hard for me to be fair to a sequel.

      Also, Epic Mickey looks potentially really excellent. I can’t hold the absence of Not Deus Ex against it.

    • ThePinkNinja says:

      I can’t see any value in remastering it.

      Maybe in ten, twenty years.

  20. DMcCool says:

    No offence but, how old are you?

  21. Matt says:

    Etiquette question:

    Is this where we disown Warren Spector for making a console-exclusive game, or are we just supposed to pretend it never existed because it’s for Wii?

    I didn’t have the proper level of ire over the whole Brutal Legend thing and I want to make sure I get it right this time.

    Thanks!

    • Jonas says:

      I opt to be slightly annoyed that it’s a Wii exclusive and idly plan to maybe convince one of my Wii-owning friends to buy it and let me play it at their place once it’s out. Feel free to copy that reaction if you like it.

      I not entirely sure what to make of the screenshots Game Informer released recently, but they look like the game might be fun. It’ll probably be a bit too platformey for my taste though, so I’m still more interested in the other projects Junction Point are ostensibly working on.

    • Jugglenaut says:

      I’m with Jonas on this one, except I’m a decently big platformer buff. So I’ll probably just convince my sister to get it, then play it off her Wii.

  22. tapanister says:

    Warren Spector is the tits, I hope he pulls it off.

  23. LionsPhil says:

    I question the wisdom of even remaking Deus Ex. What is the gaming world’s obsession with taking its Mona Lisas, and wanting to redo them using the latest paint-application techniques?

    A remake would almost certainly:
    * Replace the impressively restrained day-after-tomorrow visuals with pixel shader glowfests. (Am I the only one who likes DX’s graphics? They had a tech budget, and they made good artwork within it.)
    * “Streamline” the controls and/or play experience to bring it up to “current” FPSRPG standards. After all, DX dared to have such relics as an inventory system, several whole screens of various notetaking facilites, and no big arrows and popups continually reminding you where to go and what to do!
    * Redo the AI and leave out all the brilliant touches, like not only getting cranky at friendly fire, but deriving loyalties from observing allies under attack. Seriously, if you get a few troopers attacking, say, the UNATCO vaccum cleaner, as the fight spills about the facility, buddies observing it will stand gobsmacked for a moment before cottoning on to the “threat”. (Playing about with cheats shows just how impressively dynamic the AI allegiances are for a game that still sets yours on a [brilliant] linear path.)

    Hmm…I think I just described Deus Ex 2.

    • invisiblejesus says:

      See, I’m not under the assumption that a Deus Ex remastering would be done badly, as you describe. Game remasterings (or whatever you want to call them, I consider them remakes but some posters get twitchy about that term) have been done very well before. Tomb Raider Anniversary and Escape from Butcher Bay come to mind. Bionic Commando Rearmed isn’t half bad, either. There’s no compelling reason why a remastering has to be done poorly, nor even that many examples of it.

  24. LionsPhil says:

    I question the wisdom of even remaking Deus Ex. What is the gaming world’s obsession with taking its Mona Lisas, and wanting to redo them using the latest paint-application techniques?

    A remake would almost certainly:
    * Replace the impressively restrained day-after-tomorrow visuals with pixel shader glowfests. (Am I the only one who likes DX’s graphics? They had a tech budget, and they made good artwork within it.)
    * “Streamline” the controls and/or play experience to bring it up to “current” FPSRPG standards. After all, DX dared to have such relics as an inventory system, several whole screens of various notetaking facilites, and no big arrows and popups continually reminding you where to go and what to do!
    * Redo the AI and leave out all the brilliant touches, like not only getting cranky at friendly fire, but deriving loyalties from observing allies under attack. Seriously, if you get a few troopers attacking, say, the UNATCO vaccum cleaner, as the fight spills about the facility, buddies observing it will stand gobsmacked for a moment before cottoning on to the “threat”. (Playing about with cheats shows just how impressively dynamic the AI allegiances are for a game that still sets yours on a [brilliant] linear path.)

    Hmm…I think I just described Deus Ex 2.

    (Ok, seriously, website guestbooks have been around since the mid-freaking-nineties. How can the RPS system suck so much as to eat comments 80% of the time?)

    • Tom says:

      it does suck, doesn’t it.
      Bloody cheapscate hivemind. Or maybe it’s the overwhelming influence of just one of the minds?

    • Lambchops says:

      I accidentally did the UNATCO vacuum cleaner fight thing – I remember the sheer joy of seeing Manderley, Anna, Gunther and a bunch of troopers trying to decimate the poor invincible little thing. One of the most awesome examples of some iffy AI leading to something amusing that I’ve seen.

  25. LionsPhil says:

    I particularly like the bug where a post that gets eaten is reported as a duplicate, then fails to ever show up (despite forced cache-reloading) until resubmitted anyway.

  26. chann says:

    Strangely dirty.

  27. Psychopomp says:

    Might be a good thing. Remember Invisible War?

    • Tom says:

      Yeah, what a freak’n awesome game.

    • Psychopomp says:

      It’s nowhere near as bad as people scream about, but it didn’t come close to the heights of the original Deus Ex.

    • Karry says:

      It also reminds us that Spector couldnt even make a Deus Ex when he was actually making Deus Ex.

  28. Jugglenaut says:

    He said that he has ideas for three games, not that it is a sure thing. That’s because he plans long overarching stories, just like he still has Deus Ex ideas.

  29. Tom says:

    Ha! Funnny. I can remember Spector saying he was sooooooo over making games about men all dressed in black during those uni speaches, speeches, speechs… how do you spell it ffs!

    • Robin says:

      I remember too. He said that when he went to Disney or so. Now he’s just saying the opposite.

  30. cuc says:

    I'm surpirsed nobody brought it up that Spector said in the Game Informer interview that he was working on "modern ninja game" with John Woo before Epic Mickey.

  31. Liquidize105 says:

    I can’t wait to play Deus Therma, the spiritual successor!

  32. The Sombrero Kid says:

    i hope you all noticed me chastising children on that thread the other day, that’s right i police the internet on warren spectors behalf! on the fact it’s a wii exclusive i called it ‘officially the only reason I’ve not sold my wii’ i feel bad for those who did and now need a new one, or you could just play it on dolphin.

  33. WJonathan says:

    I blame Phil Spector for Deus Ex IW.

  34. Tom says:

    I suppose you could make that the point of focus, yeah.

  35. lumpi says:

    Eidos rather gave the rights to some unexperienced team in Montreal. Genius move.

  36. Kadayi says:

    Personally I’d love to just see Deus Ex remade taking advantage of the bigger scope, grandeur and nuance today’s game engines are capable of. It is still a cracking game (combat aspects aside) sadly held back by dated graphics & limited level design.

  37. Subject 706 says:

    I’d commit genocide for another good Deus Ex game.

    And I don’t even hate anyone.

  38. michael says:

    He had his chance at a Deus Ex sequel, and he gave us IW.

  39. DestructibleEnvironments says:

    I feel like buying a Wii for Epic Mickey, JUST because Warren is at the helm. Also, Invisble War was still a fun game, just not fun fun like the predecessor.

    PS: Test post. Please don’t kill me