Like a king cutting down lesser heirs, Paradox Interactive have cancelled “several unannounced games”. The company say they want to focus on “proven game niches and projects that better meet the company’s requirements on return and risk.” By which they mean they’ll be focusing on strategy and management games.
“Paradox Interactive was born and raised in strategy- and management games. It is where we have our heart and our mind and we are passionate about making games that our players can enjoy over a long period of time,” says CEO Fredrik Wester in the press release.
Despite the cancellations, Paradox still have a sizeable 15 games in development, some of which are new and some of which are sequels. Of the 15, four have been announced: Victoria 3, Crusader Kings 3 for consoles, the Shadowrun Trilogy for consoles, and the troubled Bloodlines 2. The 11 unnannounced games seemingly does not include in-development DLCs, which are counted separately.
I’m glad that Bloodlines 2 remains in development, despite not being a strategy game and switching developers earlier this year.
Paradox’s eyes have been larger than their tummies before, leading to several buggy releases in the early 2010s and several more announced games such as East vs. West and Runemaster being cancelled.
The Swedish publisher’s woes have been worse recently. Earlier this year, they released the (since topped) worst reviewed product on Steam. Their CEO Ebba Ljungerud quit over “differing views on the company’s strategy”, which seems likely related to these cancellations. That same week a union survey alleged more than half the women working at the company had experienced mistreatment. Then incoming CEO Fredrik Wester admitted “inappropriate behaviour” towards an employee in 2018, when he was last CEO.