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NBA Playgrounds apologizes with free Shaq Fu sequel

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For those who bought it on Nintendo Switch

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Saber Interactive

Hey, remember Shaq Fu: A Legend Reborn? The spiritual successor to the ironic 1994 flop on Sega Genesis was crowdfunded in 2014, got a nice cameo at the 2015 Game Awards, and was supposed to launch in 2016, but it didn't. Now it's the booby prize for Nintendo Switch owners who went in on NBA Playgrounds and got no online play.

Saber Interactive, maker of both NBA Playgrounds and Shaq Fu: A Legend Reborn, told Nintendo consumers yesterday that they'll get a free copy of Shaq Fu when it launches later this year. This is a make-good for the fact that the Switch version launched with no online multiplayer.

Matthew Karch, the chief executive of Saber Interactive, said that those who bought (or buy) NBA Playgrounds on Switch before the patch delivering online play will get a free copy of Shaq Fu: A Legend Reborn. Neither the patch’s delivery date nor Shaq Fu’s launch date were given.

Karch himself had said NBA Playgrounds would be a "half-assed game" if it launched without an online component, a week before his studio announced it would do just that. In the same note to NBA Playgrounds players on Friday, he said the next patch will add reworked "friends, online tournaments, reworked shot mechanics, new players, and endless performance and balance changes," all of which were called out in the game's poor reviews. Karch said player feedback greatly informed the changes coming in the next patch.

Shaq Fu: A Legend Reborn was crowdfunded on Indiegogo at $450,000 in early 2014 and promised versions for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Windows PC, Xbox 360 and Xbox One at the time. Since then, the PS3, Wii U and Xbox 360 have all been discontinued by their makers. The official site now lists the Switch, PS4, PC and Xbox One as platforms.