In 2012, Disney and Marvel contacted Avalanche Studios—the team behind Just Cause—and began working with them on an Iron Man game that would never see the light of day.
The news of this never-released Iron Man game came from a MinnMax interview with Avalanche Studios co-founder Christofer Sundberg. The studio is mainly known for its popular open-world franchise, Just Cause. Those games tend to be massive, filled with lots of explosions, action, and flying around in jets and other strange vehicles, not to mention protagonist Rico Rodriguez’s ability to perform BASE jumps and other wild, death-defying feats. On paper, a game starring Iron Man does seem like a perfect fit for the studio. But according to Sundberg, who left Avalanche in 2020 to form his own studio, there were problems with how fast Disney wanted the game made.
Sundberg told MinnMax’s Ben Hanson that it “would’ve broken the studio completely” if they had hired all the necessary people needed to finish the game in the short window Disney wanted. “We would have had to hire 70-80 people to the team that I would have had a responsibility to find a new project for,” said Sundberg.
According to Sundberg, it was a “tough one” to stop working on and he was disappointed that the nearly two years of hard work the team put into the project “went down the toilet” once the game was canned.
During the interview, Sundberg didn’t share too many details about what kind of game it would have been, though he did mention a focus on melee combat similar to the popular Batman Arkham games. He did also confirm that the game would have let the player fly around “anywhere” just like Iron Man in the films. He also told Hanson that he would still love to see the game finished one day by his former team.
“So many great people involved on both sides of the game,” he said. “It would’ve been great.”
While it’s a shame this game never saw the light of day, we aren’t desperate for Marvel-themed video games in 2022. There are so many coming, including a number of definitely real games based on Wolverine, Spider-Man, and the Midnight Suns, and even more rumored games, like a Black Panther title from EA. Still, a Just Cause-like Iron Man game could have been fun.