Just Add Water announced yesterday they were "winding up development" on Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath HD, with a statement on their site saying "We’re winding up development on Stranger’s Wrath HD and Munch’s Oddysee HD. Blame Microsoft for not letting us publish on Xbox 360."
Now JAW's Stuart Gilray has moved to clarify those comments, with a new interview accusing Microsoft's internal politics and stall tactics as the reason for the game's no show on Xbox 360.
"What I said was that we’d given up on Microsoft, not that we’d given up on 360,” Gilray explained to VG247.“What I meant was that we’d given up on Microsoft doing anything with it.”
The original game was released in 2005 on the old Xbox, and an HD version was announced in 2010, before being released on PS3 at the end of 2011. Apparently, Microsoft wanted in on the action too.
“Two weeks later [after being announced for PS3] Microsoft contacts us and asked if we wanted to a 360 version,” said Gilray. “We said yes.”
“Just before Christmas, they came back and said that they didn’t want it because it’d already been on a Microsoft platform. We said, ‘Hang on a minute. We didn’t come to you. You approached us.’ They said, ‘Yeah, but politics here says that we don’t want it on XBLA.’”
Apparently, after a chat between JAW's Lorne Lanning and a batch of Microsoft execs, thedeal was back on, but over the following months, MS threw up continuous problems.According to Gilray, the game was first moved from XBLA to Games on Demand, then questions were raised over that viability because the original game had only sold 500,000 units (the GoD requirement is 1 million), and eventually Microsoft said that Stranger's Wrath HD was no longer an option for digital download because the PS3 version had already been out for several months.
"We said, 'We've been talking to you for over 15 months, now,'" Gilray stated. "'We haven't stalled. You've been stalling us. If you'd had come to us six months ago and said fine, we would have held back the PS3 version until the 360 version was ready.'"
Apparently Just Add Water is already is talks with two other publishing partners, but has said that “because Microsoft dragged us along for 15 months, we’re now having to add new content to the 360 version.”
"We can't wait forever," said Gilray. "If we did, PS4 and 720 would be out. We have to, at some point, say, 'We tried. End of.' And that's sooner rather than later now. But people can't accuse us of not trying."
Oh Microsoft. Hands at the ready...