Backbonedeveloped Streets of Rage, ESWAT pitch art surfaces

Developer Backbone Entertainment planned to produce new entries in multiple classic Sega franchises, as evidenced in a gallery of images posted online by former Backbone artist Arvin Bautista.

Bautista's art showcases characters from Sega's Streets of Rage beat-'em-up series, along with a mockup screenshot from a proposed remake of ESWAT, a side-scrolling action game that premiered in arcades in 1989. The games were pitched as downloadable titles for Xbox Live Arcade and the PlayStation Network, though neither was officially announced. It's unknown if either game is currently in development.

Despite its Genesis-era popularity, the Streets of Rage series stumbled when it came time to transition to later consoles. A Dreamcast sequel was cancelled early in development, and though Crackdown 2 developer Ruffian Games pitched a downloadable Streets of Rage remake for current-gen consoles, a release never materialized.

Adding to the bodycount, Bionic Commando Rearmed developer GRIN was rumored to be working on its own Streets of Rage game prior to its closure in 2009. Sega itself hasn't forgotten the series, producing last year's Sega Vintage Collection: Streets of Rage compilation for Xbox Live Arcade as a reminder, but at this point, you'd be forgiven for thinking that these streets are cursed.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.