David Fox has shared more information on the development of the original Rescue on Fractalus and its aborted sequel on his Twitter account.
Here's some fo what he had to say:
When #RescueOnFractalus launched in 1984, we held a big press conference at the Lucasfilm Ltd C Building Screening Room. We wanted to present only direct footage from the games, so produced this video which starts with 1:20 of VO and SFX only.
We did the same for Ballblazer, with 1:40 of VO/SFX.
Some reporters didn't believe this was actually playing on an Atari 800 at 60fps and peeked under the table, expecting to find a laserdisc player (there wasn't one). David Levine had it screaming fast.
The production didn't always go smoothly, but that made for a slicker final product:
So many delays meant more time to polish. We were ready to release our first games at January 1984 CES. Atari wanted to wait until June. Then in July Atari was sold to Tramiel. Deals changed, found new publisher, had to create disk versions.
Fox then goes into details on the sequel, sharing mock-up videos used to give an idea of how the final experience would have looked, as well as images from presentation and concept artwork. (All of which can't be easily linked to.).
Unfortunately, in the end it was the familiar story...
So, what happened to the game? Our team had multiple meetings at LucasArts with their president Darrell Rodriguez (@drod1000) (who was a huge fan of our old games), Craig Derrick (@craigderrick) (who produced Tales of Monkey Island series and MI special editions), and several other people... And then, as had happened many times before, there was a change of direction/focus dictated from the top. No more reboots of the old games. Focus on Star Wars. Darrell left, and the project died. We were all pretty devastated.
For the full story, read Fox's full Twitter thread. Thanks for sharing, David!