Forspoken Changed Direction Multiple Times During Development

An insider says that the final product is "unrecognizable" from the initial plan.

Story Highlights

  • Forspoken morphed into many different forms during production, says insider.
  • The RPG changed direction multiple times in mid-development, especially after Hajima Tabata left Square Enix.
  • Compared to the initial plan, Forspoken is unrecognizable, for better or worse.

Forspoken comes out today and the RPG is one of the first major AAA releases of 2023. Since its first reveal, the game has divided the gaming world and still continues to do so. Now, an insider has given us some info that possibly explains why that is.

According to Alex Donaldson, the game went through many changes during development. During its production, Forspoken went in several different directions, for better or worse. We don’t know if it made the RPG worse or better, but it certainly didn’t help a lot. 

The game has split opinions concerning almost everything in the game. From the dialogue to the world-building, fans and critics alike have been giving it mixed reviews at best. Some have not been able to see past the cringe dialogue, while others have appreciated Forspoken’s combat

A lot of criticism has also been directed at the RPG’s graphics and PC specs. Players haven’t been big fans of the hefty PC requirements needed to play the game on normal graphics. On the other hand, the visuals in Forspoken also don’t have many fans as it doesn’t look as good as other modern AAA games graphically. 

YouTube video

Hence, Alex Donaldson’s info does make sense when we consider all of this. How does a big-budget RPG from a studio such as Square Enix fail at so many things? The answer is, of course, a troubled development cycle. 

Donaldson says that Forspoken changed form a lot during development. He says that the frequency of these changes increased when Hajime Tabata left Square Enix. So, the game went through numerous alterations in tone and direction. 

In the following Tweet, Donaldson does say that changes are not uncommon for games like Forspoken. But, the RPG is an extreme case of such a change of direction taking place during development. Even though it is insider info, and we don’t know if it is true, it does line up with the game’s condition.

The original pitch/plan is unrecognizable in the product as it is now. This happens to many games mid-dev, but Forspoken basically appears to be a particularly extreme case.”

Alex Donaldson also says that Forspoken has been altered so much that it is unrecognizable from the original plan. It morphed a lot, and as a result, the final product was completely different from what it initially was. However, we are not sure if this even helped the game or not. 

Many things in the game don’t make sense, and they struggle to fit in the game world. The modern dialogue in Athia, weird graphics, and bad PC optimization are just some things Forspoken couldn’t figure out. Reviews of the Forspoken demo emphasized the same thing, and the changes didn’t help the game find its identity.

Forspoken releases today on PlayStation 5 and PC. You can try the game for yourself and make your own opinion about whether it is a successful final product or not. 

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Alex Donaldson

Ahmed Mansoor is a News Writer who has a deep passion for single-player adventure games. He loves to keep tabs on the gaming and technology industries and loves to break stories that interest his audience. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and several years of experience writing for games. Experience: 3+ Years || Education: Bachelor's in Journalism || Written 600+ News Stories.

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