Almost a year ago, when the Telltale Games producer announced that they were developing a title based on Netflix’s original series Stranger Things, no one knew that the company would begin struggling just a few months later and ultimately closing without notice. No one also could guess what a huge effect the Telltale’s termination would have on another title with the same name from another studio.
The Verge revealed that while Telltale was developing its version of Stranger Things, another studio, Night School, the creator of the popular and fantastic Oxenfree, was also working on a Stranger Things project.
The founders of Night School Studio are Sean Krankel from Disney Interactive Studios and Adam Hines from Telltale. They were able to make a deal to create a Stranger Things game that would link into the version Telltale was developing, and ultimately, Telltale even offered to fund their plan.
The game was described as a ‘more free-roam’, and a ‘mini-open world’ kind of game, unlike the Telltale’s choose-your-own-adventure principle, but still preserving the classic branching story. The title was to be on between seasons 2 and 3 and would link into Telltale’s game through a game save, so whatever decisions were to be made by Night School’s developers in their version, would affect what happened in Telltale’s game from the very beginning.
Night School’s developers worked in secret on the game plan, because what they had planned was to hide the fact that Telltale was involved, even though it was a Telltale IP, as they were hoping the game to look and feel different, and to stay true to their roots.
After Telltale missed payments to the Night School studio, the developers didn’t think much of it as similar things might happen in the industry once in a while, and because they didn’t hear from Telltale, they never thought the company was struggling and would go under.
A Night School staff said that practically overnight, the Telltale shop closed, disposing of Stranger Things in the process. The studio was forced to cross out as their project died with Telltale. The work completed by the employers at Night School still exists but it ultimately belongs to Telltale, and it would probably never emerge.
Cameron Bravo was born and raised California. He has written for Buzz Feed and KMAX-TV, In regards to academics, Cameron earned an arts degree from the Sacramento State. Cameron covers local news and culture stories here at Swerd Media.