What Could Have Been…Indiana Jones & The Staff Of Kings

What Could Have Been…Indiana Jones & The Staff Of Kings


Artwork and documentation surfaces about the long-cancelled Indiana Jones video game

Almost five years ago to the day, I published an entry into my “What Could Have Been…Video Game” series. In this particular entry, I looked into the development hell of a game I had been waiting for a long time, Indiana Jones & The Staff of Kings.

You can read the full details here and also watch several videos including trailers and development tests.

Indiana Jones & The Staff of Kings was eventually published for the Nintendo Wii, Nintendo DS and the Sony PSP. This was only because those editions were developed by external studios.

Lucasarts was hard at work on the game for the Microsoft Xbox 360 and the Sony PlayStation 3 between approximately 2004 through till 2008. No official reason for the cancellation of the game was given but it’s believed that the technology developed for Indiana Jones had transpired over to Star Wars: The Force Unleashed.



In recent days I have stumbled across two internet sites that detail further information on the cancelled game. One of these sites is the 2007 Design Document Leak

This document, of which the web site claims is only 10% of the full version, offers beautiful concept art, renders of major characters as well as the basics such as the control scheme demonstrated on a PS3 controller.

The design document also contains the synopsis for the story of the game which will see Indiana Jones battle the Nazis once again.

The story takes place in 1939. Indy is drawn into an adventure to discover the fate of Professor Charles Kingston, an old mentor believed to have been killed while searching for the biblical Staff of Moses. Indy encounters his graduate school nemesis, now a high ranking Nazi Pasty official, NIagnm Reil who has plans to take the Staff and use its powers to help the Third Reich win the war against the Allies. Indy must stop theNazis, save his friends, and discover the secret to one of the greatest artefacts of history.



The second site of information comes from the portfolio of art director Dmitri Ellingson. As he explains,

From an art direction standpoint we set out to create a stylized realism look and feel which consisted of exaggerated character archetypes, hand painted texturing, hand key framed animation and idealized lighting.  I was responsible for all stages of art direction from concept to final production game assets. Additionally, I was involved with hiring and growing the art team from the ground up and which consisted of concept, environment, character, vfx, UI and technical artists.

Visit his page to view more beautiful concept art, design pages for major characters, vehicle, user interface ideas (health meter etc) and even concepts for the games main menus.

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Not counting the LEGO adaptations, we haven’t had a great Indiana Jones game for years. Come on Disney! Stop wasting such a great character! (Whilst we wait for that fifth film.)



John Abbitt

About the author | John Abbitt

@UKFilmNerd | John loves the movies and he used to write for his own website, The Tydirium Hangar Bay, in the late 1990's. Whilst the web page idea became lost in the passages of time, John's love of film did not. Now he's back, writing for The Unheard Nerd.

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