Obsidian and SEGA launching Alpha Protocol
in the shape they did, with bugs, ugly graphics and shooting mechanics that seem 5 years old, is like taking a spy, equipping them in their civilian clothes, giving them just a tier one pistol even though they specialize in gadgets and shotguns, and sending them on a mission to take on the mercenaries on Halbech's payroll. It hurts Obsidian, it hurts those who bought the game expecting some polishing and it hurts videogaming in general.
The two companies should have kept the game inside a while longer, send it through the training courses for a few more runs until it gets passing grades and then equip it with their best equipment before letting it out in the wild, ready to be taken down by tough reviewers and less than merciful gamers.
By putting it out in such an unfinished state, Obsidian probably severely reduced its chances of creating a new intellectual property any time soon, while SEGA, the publisher that probably pushed them into finally launching their pet project, passed on the chance of having a medium caliber blockbuster in their stable for the coming years.
Obsidian surely is a busy company these days, working on Fallout: New Vegas
, on which Bethesda previously worked, set to arrive this year, and also collaborating with Square Enix to create a third installment in the Dungeon Siege series, taking over from Gas Powered Games. But whoever made the decision for them to pay so little attention to the state of Alpha Protocol on the eve of launch made a huge error. The game has so much promise, so much of a foundation on which to built and expand only to be undone by the lack of finishing touches.
I certainly hope the developer will have a chance to create something original in the near future. Maybe they get the chance to actually take their time and do it well, bypassing such a situation