Celeste Developer's Upcoming Metroidvania Skytorn Gets Canceled
Skytorn - a procedurally generated Metroidvania from the team behind Celeste - has been canceled, Noel Berry announced in a blog post on Saturday.
Before the release of critically-acclaimed indie game Celeste, some of its developers were working on a procedurally generated Metroidvania project titled Skytorn. This was announced back in 2016 with a release window for the following year. On Saturday, the team took to Medium to announce the cancellation of the project.
“We’re no longer going to be finishing Skytorn […] I’m really sorry for those of you who were excited about this game. We were too. We poured a lot of time, energy, and heart into the project and we’re definitely sad it’s never going to see the commercial release we were hoping for.”
Noel Berry, lead programmer for Skytorn, noted that one of the main reasons for the cancellation of the game was that the team never found a solution to some major design problems that were at the game’s core. It’s noted that a lot of these spiked as a result of the Metroidvania being procedurally generated.
Skytorn was conceptualized at a time when Berry “was excited about procedural generation and had made tons of small prototypes” back in 2012. According to Berry, the rest of the team hopped onto the project right from the start. It started well, but “from the beginning [they] never really figured out what it was.”
“We redesigned the core a bunch of times, particularly the island generation. The general structure was always the same: There’s a floating island, and then 3 main dungeons you can go into, each of which contains a power up.”
The project was sidelined in January 2017 when development picked up full-time on Celeste, a side project that the team had started the year prior. Since then, Celeste has released to financial and critical success; receiving a nomination for Game of the Year at The Game Awards 2018 and DualShockers’ Award for Indie Game of the Year.
Ever since Celeste‘s release, the team have been debating the future of Skytorn; eventually, they decided to cancel the project indefinitely. The Skytorn team confirmed that they are sticking together and working on a new game; in fact, more news will be shared in 2019 in regards to that.
It’s unfortunate to hear that Skytorn had some problems during development that resulted in its eventual cancellation, though it makes you think what would have happened to Celeste if these problems did not exist. Would it have not been worked on full-time or released at all? Either way, we’re excited for what the team are cooking up and cannot wait to hear more.
For a better idea of what we could’ve expected from Skytorn, you can check out the most recent footage of the now-canceled title below.