Gears of War 3 + Bulletstorm = Poor CliffyB

Cliff Bleszinski

Cliff Bleszinski

You’ve gotta feel kinda sorry for Cliff Bleszinski. Not only has he failed in shaking the “CliffyB” moniker, but he’s just had one – potentially two – exclusive reveals snatched out from underneath him.

Mr. Bleszinski was scheduled to appear on late-night US television late last week, when he’d promised to bring “something interesting”. Unfortunately, a scheduling conflict saw teen heart-throb Justin Bieber taking his slot, with the appearance re-planned for Monday night.

Rumours had been flying that the game designer would be announcing the eagerly-anticipated sequel Gears of War 3 – a game that everybody knew was coming, but nobody knew when. As Bleszinski’s interview was delayed, gamers around the world assumed that the reveal would be, too.

But nothing ever runs smoothly in this industry, and the Gears of War 3 cat was let out of the bag Friday morning, from a surprising source: Xbox.

It looks like a promotional image for the Xbox 360 Dashboard had been designed to go live after Cliff’s television appearance, and somebody forgot to tweak the schedule when he was delayed. Thus – for a brief while – gamers signed into their consoles were treated to the news that “The epic story concludes April 2011”.

Gears of War 3 as revealed by Xbox

Oops.

…the image has since been removed, and the usually outspoken developer has kept mum on the topic.

Of course, it also hasn’t been confirmed that Bleszinski was appearing on television to promote the new Gears of War, either. There’s another game that Epic are hard at work on, and which they haven’t said much about.

This game is the new one for Painkiller developers, People Can Fly. It’s been in the works since 2007, when Epic first saw an early demo and (as the saying goes) liked it so much they bought the company. As time ticked on, people were starting to get a little impatient as they waited for news on the unreleased title – a name, a genre, anything!

Bulletstorm on the cover of Game Informer

Game Informer's May Issue

So it was understandable that theories had arisen that Bleszinski might be gearing up to talk not about Locusts, but about this new game out of Poland. It just made sense, y’know?

Lots of sense – until the May cover of Game Informer magazine was revealed on Friday (also after Bleszinski’s scheduled late-night TV appearance). Turns out that People Can Fly are working on Bulletstorm, a shooter described as a “symphony of destruction”, which sees gamers battling mutants while under pretty serious levels of heavy fire.

It’s possible that GI had this one planned anyway, as they’ve been picking up a bunch of exclusive reveals recently, but the timing all just seems a bit weird, doesn’t it?

So, whether it was Gears of War 3 or Bulletstorm, poor Cliff Bleszinski’s had the rug pulled out from under him. We may just have to act surprised when he’s finally featured on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, Monday night. (Unless, of course, he’s got yet another secret up his sleeve… which would be awesome!)

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