American McGee, the renowned game developer, has been seeking funding for a new entry in his “Alice” series through crowdfunding for several years.
The result was a comprehensive design document for “Alice: Asylum,” a potential third installment inspired by Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.”
American McGee then approached Electronic Arts, the rights-holders, with his pitch for the game, but unfortunately, they rejected his proposal.
The pitch included the design bible, concept art, and storyline, as well as a complete production plan, including a team, budget, and schedule for the new game.
According to McGee, Electronic Arts declined to fund the project, citing an “internal analysis of the IP, market conditions, and details of the production proposal.” Additionally, the company declined to license the IP.
As a result, American McGee announced his retirement from game development. In a statement on his Patreon, he stated that he had “reached an endpoint with ‘Alice’ and with game production in general.”
He explained that he had no further energy or ideas to pursue a new game and had no interest in pursuing any new game ideas in the current game development environment.
Despite the rejection, American McGee made the design bible for “Alice: Asylum” available for free download on his Patreon page, enabling fans to explore what might have been.
American McGee began his career in game development at Id Software, working on games such as Doom 2, Quake, and Quake 2. He was later fired in 1998, after which he joined Electronic Arts, where he served as creative director for “American McGee’s Alice,” which was released in 2000.
He then founded Spicy Horse, a Shanghai-based studio, and developed “Alice: Madness Returns,” the sequel to the original game, which was released in 2011. In recent years, he has gained success by creating horror-themed plush toys.
American McGee’s rejection by Electronic Arts marks the end of an era for the “Alice” series. Nevertheless, his legacy in game development and his contributions to the industry will undoubtedly continue to be celebrated.