#GamingBytes: Rockstar abandons 'Agent' game's trademark
Take-Two Interactive had first teased the espionage game Agent around 11 years ago, in 2007. Since then, all news around the game went silent and gamers started to believe that the project would never see the light of day. Video game publishers rarely declare a project abandoned, though the recent trademark abandonment of Agent confirms what we have known for some time.
Developed by Rockstar Games, Agent was intended to be developed as an espionage adventure, which would be set in the 1970s. Notably, Rockstar was grooming it to be its next Grand Theft Auto and the game was announced as a PlayStation 3 exclusive at E3, 2009. Agent resurfaced in news in 2010 and 2011 when an artist posted environments from the game on Reddit.
On November 19, 2018, the trademark for Agent, which had been registered back in June 2009, was listed as abandoned by the US Patent and Trademark Office. The reason listed was that 'no Statement of Use or Extension Request timely filed after Notice of Allowance was issued'; meaning that nothing was done with it by either the developers or the publishers.
It is unsurprising to see Agent never released. Red Dead Redemption, first released in 2010, a product of Rockstar's San Diego studio, had taken enormous effort to develop. It was followed by two moderate successful games, L.A. Noire and Max Payne. Then came Grand Theft Auto V, which changed the landscape. Its continuous online updates made the finite, console-exclusive gameplay, which Agent offered, obsolete.
The news that Take-Two quietly let the game's trademark lapse, indicates that we are unlikely to see Agent ever again. However, it could be possible that a re-branding is being planned by Take-Two under a different name, or the game's stealth-spy mechanics might be applied elsewhere. However, even if Agent resurfaces, the release and gameplay will be different from the original conceptualization.