Full Throttle: Hell on Wheels
What we missed: A second adventure with the world's coolest biker, of course. Actually, this was the second known attempt at a sequel, with the first, Payback, having stayed mostly within Lucasarts' walls until its cancellation in 2001. Hell on Wheels was going to be more of an action adventure, which normally would be adventure gaming anathama, but would have been building on things that went down reasonably well during the original's arcade sequences and combat sections. If nothing else, it would have been a fun return to a very underused setting, although one without the original voice of main character Ben, due to actor Roy Conrad passing away in 2002, the same year it was announced.
What we got: For Full Throttle? Nothing, nada, zip, zero and zilch. Nor have we seen any games that carry its spirit and legacy. On the plus side, its roommates in the cancelled bin, Sam and Max, did finally see new life when Telltale Games acquired the license. We never got the game that Lucasarts was making (called "Sam and Max: Freelance Police"), but we did get three full series of episodic adventure games. The last of these, The Devil's Playhouse, was pretty damn good, although we haven't heard anything about a new series coming after Telltale's current projects, Back to the Future and Jurassic Park.
What we missed: Don't check your games shelf. Yes, there's a Fallout 3. It's not however Van Buren (a codename, not the intended title), which was intended to directly continue the classing top-down RPG series. Bethesda opted for a completely different direction when it got its hands on it, turning it into a first-person game set in a much less civilised part of the wasteland (Fallout 2 in particular was a world in which people were actively rebuilding and leading active lives, not simply sitting in bombed out houses with skeletons still sitting in the bathtubs as if the great nuclear war was a recent event they were all a bit shellshocked by). We loved it for what it was, but we'd still love to have seen what it could have been...
What we got: Fallout: New Vegas uses many story elements planned for Van Buren, including Caesar's Legion (who were originally meant to have a distaff counterpart called the Daughters of Hecate), a big struggle over the Hoover Dam, and the struggles of the NCR as it attempts to civilise the wasteland. A leaked tech demo is available. Find out about it here.