The experiment has ended, lovers of RPGs and musical theater. The curtains have gone down on Soon Serenade (opens in new tab) , planned as the first Broadway showtune-style role-playing game, canceled by its developer Ransom Binary due to a lack of interest. No, we're not making this up. Any of it.
Under the company name Ransom Binary, Robby Mulvany was the sole developer and songwriter of the indie project Soon Serenade. Says Mulvany, "It was probably just a little too weird for gamers. No one had done an actual musical before. I thought that first trailer (opens in new tab) would arouse curiosity, but it really didn't. I still think there's a great RPG in there, but it's just not economical to spend five years developing a game, which when you are a one-man company, that's really the only way you can do it."
The rest of Mulvany's release reads like a passive-aggressive (and considering the theme of the game, appropriately dramatic) farewell to the games business, though it also accurately touches on the realities of indie game development.
"Maybe I'll get a chance to finish [Soon Serenade] one day, but until then at least I can release the soundtrack (opens in new tab) for the four-to-five people who were following the progress on this title. This is probably my last game, so it's a lousy way to go out -- considering I haven't released a title in four years now, but the industry is a lot different now than it was when I started. Sometimes you just get left behind, so it's time for me to move on to developing other types of software. Consider this: The First Star Online series has seven titles over the course of 12 years, but virtually no one reading this has probably heard of them. That's how I know it's time to move on. I think most gamers assume anyone who releases a title makes money. It's not true in the slightest. Almost all indie games completely bomb and a lot of the time developers don't even get a shot to make a second game. I was fortunate to hang on this long, but this is a very brutal business and though I exit it, I still hope to be able to talk to people looking to jump in and warn them of what they can truly expect."
All joking aside, I personally would have liked to play Soon Serenade in its final form. We wish Mr. Mulvany luck in his future endeavors. To download the soundtrack to Soon Serenade for free, go here (opens in new tab) .