Free Radical Design Blaming Playstation 3 for Haze’s Problems

The developer of Haze is partially blaming the Playstation 3 for the numerous problems of the game. Free Radical Design was founded in 1999. The talented team is made up of former members of the world-renowned Rare. Some of the key members of Free Radical Design worked on two of the best first-person shooters ever in GoldenEye 007 Perfect Dark on the Nintendo 64.
Aside from the 2004 action-adventure game, Second Sight, Free Radical Design mainly focuses on developing first-person shooters. Their first title was TimeSplitters, a Playstation 2 exclusive game released in 2000. TimeSplitters 2 would be released two years later on the Gamecube, Xbox and Playstation 2. TimeSplitters: Future Perfect followed in 2003 on the same three platforms. All three of Free Radical Design’s first-person shooting titles are critical and financial successes.
After the completion of TimeSplitters: Future Perfect, Free Radical Design decided to move onto the next-generation of video game systems. In the middle of 2006, they formally announced their new game, Haze for the PC, Playstation 3 and Xbox 360. To take advantage of the power of the new hardware, Free Radical Design built a proprietary game engine with many visual effects in addition to gameplay innovations.
The rising development studio decided to drop PC and Xbox 360 support for Haze and made the game a Playstation 3 exclusive title. Doing so reduce the number of resources in the previously multiplatform project in addition to putting more focus towards the overall quality of the game. Even so, Haze wouldn’t be released on the Playstation 3 until May 20, 2008.
Despite showing some promise, the Playstation 3 exclusive games only got bad to mediocre review scores. Haze was panned for its numerous graphics glitches in addition to numerous other problems. Overall, it felt rushed and under-developed despite of being in development for so long.
Free Radical Design blamed most of the game’s problems on the complicate hardware of the Playstation 3. Many development studios struggle coding game on Sony’s system early on, which almost always resulted in the Xbox 360 version of a multiplatform game looking better than a Playstation 3 version. It wasn’t until later that Sony vigorous worked with these developers that the problems begin to go away.
Unfortunately for Free Radical Design, it was already too late. Due to the lackluster sales of Haze, they had to lay off a majority of their staff. Free Radical Design were on the brink of closure until they were purchased by Crytek, which then renamed them Crytek UK. It should be interesting to see what the first project from Crytek UK is and if will involve the Playstation 3 at all.


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