A Saints Row game in the works for PlayStation Portable canceled back in 2009 has just been revealed to the public for the first time by Volition.
Ahead of a livestream next week where the game will be shown off more fully, Volition offered a first look and some background on the project in the video above. A PSP dev kit was discovered in Volition’s offices by one of the studio’s video producers, and this in turn led to finding out that a game had been in development for the platform called Saints Row Undercover.
What started out as a port of Saints Row 2 for PSP became its own game after the developers realized that such a project wasn’t feasible. As the video shows, it is basically an open-world action game in the same vein as the other Saints Row titles, though it does look pretty rough (as is to be expected from an unfinished game for PSP).
Originally called Saints Row: The Fall, the version of Undercover that existed before being canceled featured an open world, a tutorial mission, and some “mild player customization.”
“Turns out that when you have an early build, they’re not going to be super clean and polished like a finished game is,” associate video editor Josh Stinson says. “It was honestly kind of shocking that this was so far along.”
As for why it was ultimately canceled, community manager Mike Watson explains that the project was being handled by an outside developer, as handheld development isn’t Volition’s forte. When THQ and Volition reviewed the game’s progress, it was decided that “it really wasn’t living up to what a Saints Row game could and should be.”
While there was initially some hesitation on Volition’s part to show off the game, it was decided to move ahead with doing so. It’ll be streaming more from the game on Thursday, January 28 at 2 PM PST / 5 PM EST on Twitch.
The most recent Saints Row game was 2015’s standalone Saints Row IV expansion Gat Out of Hell.