While Bethesda has already refuted the rumors that Prey 2 has been cancelled, the publisher didn’t exactly go into detail as to why the game is being delayed in the first place. Sure, they did say that the game “wasn’t meeting their quality expectations,” but that was it — until now, at least.
According to a Shacknews source who wishes to remain anonymous, Human Head, the game’s developer, has not worked on Prey 2 since November of last year! The cause of this all was apparently a contract dispute between Human Head studio and Zenimax Media. Human Head had purportedly stopped work on the game deliberately so it could negotiate a more favorable deal. While the studio was doing that, many of the people on the development team got laid off; with the hope that they would be “rehired” if the contract issue was resolved amicably.
The report states that the discussion was going gaining some positive steam until January when Zenimax supposedly all but stopped responding. This caused the laid-off people working on Prey 2 to speculate whether the game would even see the light of day.
The source also said that by March 1, things have progressed “a bit,” leaving the Prey 2 development team hopeful that they would be back to work soon; but that “quickly soured” the following day…the source could not provide further first-hand details after March 2.
When contacted with this info, Zenimax gave the following statement:
We aren’t commenting on the game’s development beyond what was said in the statement that was released this morning.
It’s now unknown what is to become of Prey 2. Will it be shuffled off to a new development studio? This scenario seems likely given Human Head’s situation with Zenimax. In any case, we’ll update the situation as more news and rumors arises.