In 2007, Rob Cunningham (of Homeworld fame) formed a brand new studio called Blackbird Interactive. By 2009, work had begun on an ambitious new strategy game strongly inspired by Homeworld’s art design and setting. In 2013, everyone working there was laid off.
That 2009 game was called HARD|WARE, and was intended to be a free-to-play Facebook strategy game. Yossarian King, Blackbird’s CTO, describes it on the Unity blog like this:
HARD|WARE was to be a visually compelling game with a great story that would blow the socks off the farming and mob games that dominated the huge new Facebook gaming market. Massive trucks would engage in perilous expeditions across the desert, fighting the elements and each other to extract the booty from wrecked starships scattered across the planet.
It was a sound idea! Facebook games were and still are garbage, so a team making something more substantial, something closer to a traditional RTS title, would have been cool!