Long-lost, cancelled Iron Man revealed by developer


GenePool Software worked on an Iron Man game, after the success of X2: Wolverine’s Revenge.

Former GenePool Software developer Kevin Edwards has revealed the studio worked on an Iron Man tie-in game in 2003, following the success of X2: Wolverine’s Revenge – but the game was cancelled before it could get off the ground.

In a new Twitter / X thread, Edwards has shared screenshots and gameplay of The Invincible Iron Man, which appears to be a third-person, mission-based action adventure. Players would be able to hover through stages using Iron Man’s rocket boosters, and fire on enemies using hand-based rockets and blasts.

One mission shared in a brief clip of gameplay features Iron Man travelling through a sandy desert in search of a droid manufacturing plant. His mission is to discover the entrance to the facility and eliminate enemy threats while travelling below radar level. The mission bounds are a very neat way to ground Iron Man within the game’s world – while he can fly, players would need to travel low, with rockets serving as encouragement not to test the hero’s flight capacity.

Per Edwards, the game was only in development for around 5-6 months before it was unexpectedly cancelled by Activision, and GenePool was shut down. Despite the short development time, the game’s early footage looks quite polished, with character movement and attacks already implemented.

Given how fondly X2: Wolverine’s Revenge is remembered, it seems a shame that The Invincible Iron Man was unceremoniously canned. In the early 2000s, Marvel was experiencing a renewed wave of popularity, thanks to the growth of its film universe, and Iron Man was set to be adapted into a feature film at the time.

While that movie – the one that would kickstart the long-running Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) – would take some time before getting into shape for release, The Invincible Iron Man could have served as a mainstream introduction to the character prior to his big film debut. It’s worth noting Iron Man wasn’t always as popular as he was now – and having him feature in a game adaptation would have made the character a much bigger deal.

Unfortunately, it does appear the timing and circumstances weren’t quite right for GenePool’s adaptation. All we have to remember the game by is the footage newly-posted by Edwards and a few scant facts about its existence.

That said, there is a brighter future for those awaiting an Iron Man game like this one. As previously announced, EA Motive is currently working on a single player adventure game starring the character, with a view to give him a greater spotlight. We’ll learn more about this game in the coming months.


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By Leah J. Williams 5 July 2024


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