Rumours regarding God of War III director Stig Asmussen’s sci-fi property have been rampant since before Kratos’ angry sandals touched the scorching sands of the Desert of Lost Souls. Last summer, Battlestar Galactica writer Michael Angeli teased the title at Comic-Con, noting that he’d been working with developer Sony Santa Monica for the past two and a half years. Unfortunately, it sounds like the PlayStation 4 project has been scrapped.

Not much is known about the game itself, but it’s believed that it went into full production shortly after the completion of God of War: Ascension last year. A secret message in the aforementioned release teased the upcoming endeavour, hinting that “when the Earth stops, the journey begins”. Sadly, we’ll probably never get to learn the meaning behind the Easter egg, as speculation is rife that the title has been tossed in the trash can.

Yesterday, the platform holder revealed that there had been a number of redundancies at the studio, which it claimed were a result of “resource realignment”. It’s now thought that around 50 employees were let go, with the unannounced space escapade scrapped in the process. Ex-lead level designer Jonathan Hawkins stated as much on Twitter, confirming that he was part of Stig Asmussen’s team and that the new intellectual property has been cancelled.

Considering that the game has been kicking around for almost four years now, it’s particularly harrowing news. It’s not exactly clear why the title was shelved, as there had been some whispers that the team was gearing up for an E3 reveal. Worse still, the developer just acquired a new office, which was supposed to help facilitate its expansion. A recently released video focusing on the studio culture has since been removed from the Japanese giant’s YouTube channel.

While the redundancies are obviously a source of sadness, it’s hard to miss a game that never really existed. Still, the developer has been teasing this new property for some time now, so it’s a massive shame that we’ll never get to see what it actually was. Even more worrying is that we probably won’t be hearing from Sony Santa Monica for a while, with Cory Barlog supposedly sticking around to revive the God of War franchise.

[via twitter.com, twitter.com, twitter.com]