Xbox Founder Seamus Blackley Explains Why Scalebound Had To Come To An End
(Last Updated On: April 1, 2017)

Were you among the crowd of fans that were disappointed about Scalebound’s demise when it was canceled? Well, Seamus Blackley, the founder, and creator of the original Xbox explains what happened.

In an interview with The Inner Circle Podcast, Seamus Blackley talks about how disappointing it was to hear that Scalebound was canceled, joking that he “hated” Phil Spencer for ending the game before it was released. He shifted the conversation off of consoles and transitioned to a new topic to cryptically talk about Scalebound’s cancellation.

“I have a question for you guys, Phil has taken a lot of heat for a lot of first party cancellations, and there was one that was very near and dear to my heart that got canceled that I shall not name, but you can probably guess. I mean,  what do you guys think of that? What are people saying about that? “

The Inner Circle team responded —

“It was Brutal, I was probably one of the first people to tweet Phil.”

And that he did. Here are the tweets in question. You can click on the below Tweets to read all the follow-up replies from the community as well.

The reason why The Inner Circle team found it so disappointing was because the Xbox One doesn’t have a long list of awesome RPG titles, and Scalebound was doing something pretty different from what we usually see. Blackley went on to explain why Phil had to do what he did and make the tough call, saying…

“Well, I mean look. Also, You’ve got to put yourself in Phil’s position. [….]


“If Scalebound was gonna fail and it wasn’t looking good and builds weren’t getting any better, then that’s Phil’s credibility. So if Phil says ‘No We’re not canceling it’, right? And the Microsoft executives and board of directors and people are looking over his shoulder because he has a lot of bosses, right? Now, he’s F*cked On Credibility. Right?


“If it keeps on not working out, then all the other stuff  he believes in that he’s trying to keep alive, he loses his ability to do that too.”

He even mentions No Man’s Sky and how bad that burned him to the point that even after the developers patched the game, he’ll never go back to it because the developer’s lost all their credibility.

Blackley goes on to explain how if Phil Spencer had pushed for a game that wasn’t moving along in development the way they had planned and he continued to push the game towards release, his credibility at Microsoft would be on the line, and all future titles he wants greenlit for Xbox would have a very difficult time moving forward once his credibility was lost.

So instead of risking the launch of a game that could possibly spell disaster and be a huge disappointment, he instead made the tough executive decision to just cancel the project altogether.

In turn, Spencer saves his credibility and can use his influence to push for other games and get other companies funding for bigger and better projects. As Spencer points out in his above tweet,  they are confident with their 2017 lineup, so hopefully, they’ll have something amazing to show us at this upcoming E3 2017 that won’t be a major let down.

You can listen to the full podcast as they talk about the history of Xbox, and then work their way up to more current events. But if you want to jump straight to the Scalebound content, head on over to the 45:40 mark and listen from there.


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Helping provide news, previews, reviews and info on new and upcoming indie titles and mainstream games, Nick’s passion for gaming and eye for detail extends across various genres and styles. Need to contact this author? Use our Contact page.