Spicy Horse, the studio founded by Alice creator American McGee in 2007, is working on a game based on The Wizard of Oz – but it's not American McGee's Oz, the game that was canceled in 2004 when publisher Atari pulled funding.
"This is not, in any way, shape or form, the title from 2004," Spicy Horse Community Manager Kelly Heckman tells Joystiq.
The new Oz game is still in its early stages, and Spicy Horse has yet to decide which genre it will be – strategy, puzzler, platformer, action, FPS – though the studio has a few ideas. The game will be cross-platform between tablets and PC, Mac and Linux, and while Spicy Horse likes the idea of a physical product, it has no concrete plans in that regard.
"It will be based on the entire Oz series – almost all 14 titles – so expect to see unique things not seen in previous incarnations," Heckman says.
As legend has it, nearly a decade ago McGee began crafting a Wizard of Oz game, but Atari canceled it in 2004, after producing a handful of action figures and concept art. McGee went on to found Spicy Horse and partnered with EA to launch Alice: Madness Returns in 2011. Spicy Horse is currently in talks with EA to retrieve the Alice license, and it has plans for a third game in the series, Alice: Otherlands.
Spicy Horse is working on two Kickstarters – one for Alice: Otherlands and one for Oz – but which project actually goes live will depend entirely on EA and how that Alice deal goes down, Heckman says.
Yesterday on the Facebook page for Alice: Otherlands, one fan suggested that if Spicy Horse couldn't work out the Alice rights with EA, it should develop "that Oz title instead."
Spicy Horse responded, "It's already in the works."