2. Spider-Man Classic
For a Spider-Man fanatic like myself, this is the most painful cancellation of all. Shaba Games was the Activision-owned developer that mainly ported Tony Hawk games to older consoles. Spider-Man: Web of Shadows was the team’s first-ever attempt at an original title on current hardware, and to me it’s still the best Spidey game ever made. The team’s next project would be Spider-Man Classic, but Activision closed the studio before it really got off the ground.
Spider-Man Classic would carefully recreate some of Peter Parker’s greatest comic book battles (against the likes of Carnage and Mysterio), and Spidey would also team up with heroes like Wolverine. The episodic take on boss encounters and storytelling would be picked up in Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions, a fine game but one that couldn’t match Shaba’s free-flowing Spider-combat. Unlike most entries on this list, all we have are concept art and character models to see what the title would’ve been like, but the quality of these images and the pedegree of its predecessor are enough to make the loss of this Spider-celebration plenty heartbreaking.
1. Marvel’s Avengers (by THQ)
Sega produced a number of games tied to Marvel Cinematic Universe’s first phase, from the horrendous Thor and Iron Man games to the tolerable Captain America. However, Sega didn’t have the rights to the long-awaited payoff of The Avengers game tie-in, as THQ must have paid big bucks to get to make the mega-crossover. And yet, when the film made a billion-plus dollars at the box office, no game was to be seen. How did THQ drop the ball so badly, especially when they had a game in production?
Planned as a side Avengers game featuring Marvel Comics’ heroes battling off a Skrull Invasion, Brian Michael Bendis himself worked on the story and THQ Australia had an ambitious plan to make it a first-person action game. After years of work and planning, THQ was in a bad way and needed more time/money from Marvel to get the game to completion, which Marvel turned down. It was another nail in THQ’s coffin, and while I doubt the game would’ve won any GOTY awards, it looks IMMEASURABLY better than Ubisoft’s similar release of 2012, Battle For Earth. How does shit like that get to market but not THQ’s game?