Just as Marvel were beginning to dip their toes in bringing their superheroes to the silver screen in the early 2000’s, the company also pushed for tie-in video games by licensing out their properties. 2002 saw the release of Spider-Man by Treyarch and Activision based off Sam Raimi’s movie of the same name. Other titles such as the X-Men: Mutant Academy series took Marvel’s characters and crafted more original experiences, yet still launched alongside movie counterparts.
One such studio that tried to do just that was 5000ft Inc, who partnered with publisher Encore to release a small scale Daredevil game. Once Marvel saw early builds of the game and the developers learnt of a Daredevil movie on the horizon, the project quickly grew in scope with the ambition to create an open-world, third-person action game for PlayStation 2 and Xbox. However, with creative friction emerging between Sony and Marvel who saw different directions for the game, and an influx of new staff indulging in illegal activities involving narcotics, the project began to fall apart and was eventually cancelled.
Telling the story of Daredevil: The Man Without Fear’s troubled development and eventual demise is YouTuber and journalist Liam Robertson, who contacted the developer to learn more about why this game never came to be. You can watch his video below, and see footage of what looked to be a very promising project ahead of its time. With elements very similar to those seen in the Batman: Arkham series, such as a detective mode-esque feature called the ‘Shadow World’ and an emergent open-world environment, this Daredevil game could have been something special.