One of the games I was looking forward to most this year was Rising Thunder, a simplified but competitive fighting game from Seth Killian and the two Cannon brothers responsible for organising the Evolution fighting game championships.
But that won't see the light of day any more, because Rising Thunder is shutting down.
The news was announced on the Radiant Entertainment website this morning, with the company's founders Tom and Tony Cannon revealing that the Los Altos-based studio would continue to develop their survival strategy title in Early Access, Stonehearth.
Development on Rising Thunder, however, would not continue. "As for Rising Thunder, the team will start work on a new game that we’re incredibly excited about. We wish we could say more now, but rest assured you’ll hear more when the time is right. For now, we will be permanently closing Rising Thunder on March 18th," the Cannon brothers wrote.
They also confirmed the game's closure on Twitter, to clear up any confusion.
— Rising Thunder (@RisingThunder) March 8, 2016
No information is available yet as to what Radiant's new project would be, but the Radiant founders — who are also owners of the Shoryuken fighting game website and creators of the GGPO netcode — said they would "continue their mission of building incredible games that speak to us personally as players".
I'm genuinely gutted by this news. It had a ton of development left to go, but Rising Thunder was an enjoyable twist that made the mental aspect of fighting games accessible without dumbing it down or requiring complex executions. I'm still hopeful that someone else will take up the ideas Radiant introduced with their robot fighter, although there's always the chance Riot could use their expertise in fighters to good use with a creative League of Legends spin-off.