“Huh? Say that again…”
There was always hope Heavenly Sword would give birth to a sequel that was “bigger and better than ever before.” At least that’s what we thought when we received a batch of new concept art from Ninja Theory. Not only were our hopes dashed, but they’ve now been pummeled into believing there will never be a Heavenly Sword sequel. Nariko is dead.
Prompted by a barrage of disappointed fans over Ninja Theory’s announcement that their next game is a multiplatform new IP, IT Manager “Peonic” gave them even more bad news:
We’re not abandoning HS just on a whim because we want to go off and do something different – there’s a great huge raft of reasons behind us taking the direction we are – and it’s also the nature of the business that I’m not allowed to share any of those reasons with you
As for the ‘you’re just not doing HS2 NOW’ comments – well one thing you learn in this industry is that you never say ‘Never’. So I’m not going to say we’ll “never” go back and make HS2 – but it’s something I personally see as extremely unlikely.
So there you have it, Ninja Theory have abandoned Heavenly Sword and a sequel is unlikely. This is most likely due to perceived poor sales, despite recently reaching platinum status.
The following words from Ninja Thoery founder Nina Kristensen, stated before we knew an eventural sequel was unlikely, sheds some light on the decision:
Well, with Kung-Fu Chaos, we worked exclusively with Microsoft; with Heavenly Sword, we worked exclusively with Sony. And it’s really a time for us to go cross-platform, so we ultimately turned it down. As a studio, we feel it’s the right thing to do. It makes things more commercially viable – and as an indie we have to be very commercially aware. It was great to work with Sony and get really intimate with the PS3 hardware; going forwards, that positions us to execute things properly on both PS3 and 360.
Sadly Heavenly Sword 2 can’t be a multiplatform title, since the IP is owned by SCE. Peonic goes on to hypothise that Sony could take on the series themselves:
As to whether SCE decide to get someone else in to extend the franchise – well that, as the IP owner, would be completely up to them.
We’re sure the game wouldn’t be the same without Ninja Theory, so we’re all set to be blown away by their new IP and will reluctantly forget about the planned Heavenly Sword trilogy.