You assume that developers know the game they're going to make, when they commit to spending millions of dollars on making it. It seems like sound business sense. But it's also a years-long process. What do you do if your game's going wrong? Do you just bitch about it by the water cooler, or does someone slam on the brakes? Here are six games that saved themselves by changing direction...
There was a point in Borderland's development when no-one cared. It was a post-apocalyptic shooter, a Mad Max game with savage civilisations and weaponised cars. There were to be online co-op, and oh my dear sweet days isn't it so brown.
In Spring of 2009, Gearbox emerged, having made some very important changes. It was still mostly brown, but the outlines of their characters now sported varying thicknesses of black lines. Randy Pitchford, the Gearbox guy who consistently made Duke Nukem Forever sound as unpleasant as it eventually turned out to be, insisted that "it wasn't cel-shaded". Well, no. You've just put black lines on it.
But this, along with the new-found sense of humour, was exactly what the game needed. Borderlands was a jolt of fresh, genre-bleeding co-op on the consoles. It just needed the right screenshots to get that across. People who say graphics don't matter? Don't be so stupid.