In the first of what certainly won't be a regular innuendo-strewn column entitled Dan's Hot Tip, I bring news directly from the Twitter feed of handsomely bearded journo Dan Griliopoulos. Jason Kingsley of Rebellion, the home of Sniper Elite and 2000 AD, discusses the UK developer's plans for Battlezone. [We] "bought the IP at auction from Atari last year. Have some exciting plans for it and lots of ideas". The purchase was made last summer and Rebellion picked up Moonbase Commander rights at the same time. The real news though - the part that you can actually touch - is the release of Bionite's alpha.
Two years after being successfully funded through Kickstarter, Bionite: Origins has an alpha. It was released at the beginning of the month but I completely missed it because my attention span isn't two years long. Bionite had actually been in development for two years when the Kickstarter began in 2012 so the alpha represents four years of work.
That thing I said about being able to 'touch' the alpha might not be entirely accurate though. The website that the Kickstarter page links to appears to have lapsed and reverted to placeholder text and updates have been coming through Facebook more ofen than the Kickstarter page. The Facebook page for the project also appears to have vanished sometime in the last few months, although the creator's own page is still available and linked on the Kickstarter page.
It was only by going to that second Facebook profile that I found the new website for the game, which is written in the header photo. Of the move, Platoon say:
With careful consideration we have decided to move the site one last time to this URL so that all of our assets are in one place. sorry for any inconvenience this may create for you.
Presumably backers received notification of the move but since the game is still available to buy ($5), it'd seem helpful to allow people to reach its page without following a trail through abandoned websites.
In short - Bionite has a hard to find alpha, two years after funding and Rebellion may or may not announce something Battlezone-related in the near future. Here's hoping that when they do show some of those ideas, they'll be worth the wait.
In the meantime, TANKS.