Alien Virus was a sci-fi/horror point-and-click adventure game for the Playstation console planned for release today in 1996. Despite having all of its assets intact from its PC counterpart released a year earlier, Alien Virus was scrapped by Vic Tokai and never released.
No reasons have ever been given for why the game was cancelled, but it’s fair to speculate the lackluster performance and mediocre reviews of Silverload, another point-and-click adventure released by Vic Tokai in January of 1996 might have contributed to the decision. Silverload, despite being a game I enjoyed very much, suffered from a few problems in its transition from PC to Playstation, most of which had to do with the controller. The DualShock wasn’t available, and gamers weren’t inclined to buy the Playstation Mouse accessory, which left us trying to navigate the world of point-and-click adventure games with the standard digital control pad. This didn’t work as well as it should have. My guess is Alien Virus, slated for release six months after Silverload, had similar problems.
Games get the axe all the time for a variety of reasons. What makes Alien Virus’s cancellation odd is that the game was 100% completed, the packaging was designed, ads were taken out in gaming magazines (see the one we found below), and at least one publication reviewed it back in 1996. Why drop it after all that work?
Unfortunately the PS1 library lacks for a good number of quality adventure titles. Alien Virus isn’t a great game on the PC, but it’s a good game, and worth playing for fans of the genre. Seeing this one vanish into the ether sucked.