Producer Jerry Bruckheimer’s instincts for hits are usually pretty strong. He’s the man behind such blockbusters as Top Gun, Armageddon, and Pirates of the Caribbean, as well as the long running TV show CSI.
Bruckheimer has also tried to work in video games, first by producing the big screen adaptation of Prince of Persia, then by trying to get into the gaming biz with Gore Verbinski, director of Pirates, and the upcoming reboot of the Lone Ranger.
While Bruckheimer has a big track record for hits, no one bats a thousand, and as Variety reports, the gaming synergy he had with Verbinski is now kaput. Indeed, Bruckheimer and Verbinski were working on a game called Matter with Microsoft, but it has now been shut down, and Jerry Bruckheimer Games has come to an end as well.
This was also going to be Verbinski’s first video game as well, and it’s interesting to note he was going to direct the big screen adaptation of Bioshock, which didn’t come together either. Bruckheimer founded his game shingle in 2007, and Matter even had a trailer, which debuted last year. To us, it looks a little Tron-ish, with a sphere traveling through some complex mazes, and you can spot a little bit of Star Wars in there as well. (Again, blockbuster boys trying to make a blockbuster game, it makes sense).
Bruckheimer Games shut down before putting out any titles at all, and the staff have all moved on to other companies. So what went wrong? Wouldn’t these two guys together put together some big selling games? Apparently Bruckheimer Games started coming undone in 2010 when Viacom sold Harmonix and didn’t want to make any more console games, which Variety reports “all but end[ed] Bruckheimer’s chances for getting a tentpole title off the ground.”
It’s also hard to predict where gaming is going this year, but if the market is on the upswing, there’s no reason to think Bruckheimer couldn’t have delivered a blockbuster game with big screen crossover potential. Again, Bruckheimer’s usually tuned in pretty strong to what the public wants, and he probably could have conquered the world of gaming as well.