When they're not finding major success on Kickstarter, creating the first ever promising South Park game, or having their projects pulled out from under them, Obsidian somehow find the time to start work on new games, in this case a title for the next generation of consoles - also known as the current/future/always gen of PC. What do we know about it? *Sad trombone noise*. BUT it appears to be a game with "missions/quests, scripted sequences, encounters, challenges and rewards", as revealed in a couple of job listings.
Obsidian has released the first in-game footage for Project Eternity, demonstrating how the engine will feature dynamic elements such as lighting, weather, water and wind in a 2D engine. Those features aren't easy when you're dealing with otherwise static 2D assets, but the wizards at Obsidian have it sorted.
The big buzz around, and apparent main focus of, Obsidian, lately, has been the wildly-successfully-crowd-funded Project Eternity. That's not all they're up to, however, with the delayed South Park: The Stick of Truth still brewing somewhere in the studio. And, as CEO Feargus Urquhart revealed in an interview with RPS, they've had at least one more project of similar size contracted since late last year.
“I would say it’s within the top three pitches we’ve ever come up with,” Obsidian CEO Feargus Urquhart told RPS, describing Obsidian's pitch for a new game set between the end of the recent trilogy and the start of A New Hope.
"We think that timeframe is super interesting," he added. "It’s the fall of the Republic, the extermination of the Jedi, it’s Obi-Wan going off and making sure Luke is OK. You have the Sith, but you have the extermination of all Force users except for very, very few. So it was an interesting time to set a game, and you know, Chris Avellone came up with a really cool story.”
There’s some scuttlebug regarding a new Fallout floating around the internet: the radioactive smoke is curling up from the burning, irradiated embers. Bethesda have been registering names, and the in-game DJ’s voice actor has promised more from him. Could it be? Is it possible?
With Skyrim out of the stable, there’s definitely room for Bethesda to get irradiating the world again. There’s a really good base, but there’s always room for improvement. And, what do you know, I’ve written down some thoughts on what they could work on.
According to Obsidian CEO Feargus Urquhart, Baldur's Gate 3 was on the table in a serious way not too long ago. In an interview with Kotaku, he revealed that Atari, owners of the rights to Dungeons & Dragons-based games, were interested in the project and had even given the verbal thumbs-up on a Mass Effect-sized budget.
The latest Stick of Truth trailer - shown at the VGA awards the other night - has finally been allowed to exist on the internet, which means we've been afforded another glimpse at what Obsidian have been working on the past few months. And, yep, it still looks indistinguishable from an episode of South Park. Sadly, one of the newer ones, but at least we've seemingly been spared another Family Guy: Back to the Multiverse-style catastrophy - Stick of Truth seems to entirely get what South Park is about. You can watch it below, if you're suitably prepared for a barrage of racist insults, gaseous expulsions, and oh God what is Mr. Slave doing
There's fifteen hours left on the clock, but Project Eternity is already the most funded game ever to grace Kickstarter. There's currently $3,415,388 in the donation pot, which means Obsidian have narrowly edged past former Kickstarter champions, Double Fine, who raised $3,336,371.
Only one stretch goal remains for Project Eternity, and at this rate they'll probably reach that, too. All that's left to do is shake up the bubbly and wait for the countdown timer to expire.
Update: It's passed $3.5 million! Ten hours to go
We've just finished moderating a live Project Eternity Q&A with the Obsidian team -- thank you to everyone who participated! Project Director/Lead Designer Josh Sawyer did most of the talking, but also in the chat with us were Obsidian CEO/President Feargus Urquhart, Project Manager/Lead Programmer Adam Brennecke, Gameplay Programmer Steve Weatherly, Senior Environment Artist Hector Espinoza, and Lead Sound Designer Justin Bell. If you missed it, the highlights and full transcript are after the jump.
Obsidian's Project EternityKickstarter continues to absorb all human wealth with a hunger that lies somewhere between The Little Old Lady Who Swallowed A Fly and a supermassive black hole. They've now announced an additional $165 digital-only contribution tier that promises donors a copy of Wasteland 2 (inXile's Kickstarter-funded RPG sequel) as well.
And not only that! But contributions of $165 or more will snag you the first expansion pack for the game on top - which should ship six months after the game's release in April 2014.
We're about halfway through the Project Eternity Kickstarter drive and there's already $2.2 MILLION in the pot. That's twice as much as Obsidian asked for. Now they're publishing new stretch goals to keep the green tide flowing. If pledges reach the $2.4 million mark (which seems likely at this point), Obsidian will add crafting and enchanting mechanics. As you'd expect, this allows players to combine the adventuring detritus they discover on their travels to make potions, scrolls and custom gear upgrades.
Last week Obsidian asked the internet if they'd be interested in a new isometric RPG from the brains behind Fallout 1, Fallout 2, Fallout: New Vegas, Icewind Dale, KOTOR 2 and Planescape Torment. The internet responded with a loud "HELL YES" and promptly vomited $1,428,714 into Obsidian's Kickstarter bucket, passing the $1.1m target toot sweet.
Stretch goals, then. They stretch all the way to $2.4m and tease new playable races, classes and companions. At $2m players will get houses in which to stash loot. At $2.2m the team will add "a whole new faction and the territory it holds. This adds new NPCs, quests, magic items, and hours of gameplay."
Much like earlier Obsidian game Knights of the Old Republic 2, what we got in Fallout: New Vegas was only part of what was planned, or even implemented only to be dummied out. Modders to the rescue! Investigating the source with forensic care, there are now many fixes available to do everything from turn Freeside back into the single map it was meant to be, to adding back characters that were cut. Better still, you can grab the necessary mods in a set of easy packages - right here!
Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords is full of secrets -- content that was cut from the final release, some due to time constraints. In 2009, as if it were a Renaissance painting obscured by soot, a team of modders began to carefully restore the unfinished content. Yesterday, that team released the final version of The Sith Lords Restored Content Mod (TSLRCM), which restores plot elements, decisions, and dialog (even filling in voice acting where it's missing), and fixes hundreds of bugs since the last version.
Read on for my chat with the project's co-lead, Zbigniew "zbyl2" Staniewicz, about what the mod took to complete, and what's next for the team...
Obsidian designer Chris Avellone has been talking to Games Industry International about the prospect of a Planescape kickstarter. He says that he's "very tempted" by the idea, but suggests that he'd rather create a spiritual successor instead of a direct sequel.
"I don't know if I'd want to do it as a Planescape game," he says. "I think a better approach would be to ignore the D&D mechanics and respect what Planescape was trying to do and what the game did and see if you can do what Fallout did when it became the spiritual successor to Wasteland."
The South Park trailer was a beam of light in an otherwise fairly turgid Microsoft showing at the E3 2012 conference earlier today. Show creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone took to the stage to take a playful jab at Microsoft.
“How many times have you been watching an episode of South Park and thought, ‘I’d like to watch this on my television, while hooked into my mobile device, which is being controlled by my tablet device, which is hooked into my oven, all while sitting in the refrigerator,” said Parker. “Well, we’re not doing that. We’re just doing this game. It’s an RPG.”
The pair went on to talk about how Obsidian had managed to nail South Park's "crappy" look. They're right about that. It looks like the show, it feels like the show, it farts like the show. It'll be interesting to see how it actually plays.
Some new screenshots of Obsidian's South Park RPG have appeared on The Guardian. They look uncannily similar to the TV show, which somehow only seems to compound the strangeness of the fact that the creators of Fallout: New Vegas are making a South Park game. Is it really happening? It must be.
The Guardian mention that the show's creators, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, are writing the game, and have forwarded oodles of artwork and style guides from the TV series onto Obsidian. That explains why the screens are so authentic. Combat will be turn based, with your party lining up on the left and an array of enemies on the right. Soda pop and coffee can be used to buff your team, who will be made up of the shows most famous stars.
It's due out sometime this year. The screens below show plenty of combat, and an instance in which Butters attacks a hippy with a massive hammer.
Well now, this is just delightful. Obsidian - fresh off the at times (read: Old World Blues) hysterical Fallout: New Vegas - is teaming up with Trey Parker and Matt Stone to create a "full-scale" South Park RPG. This is no quick social or mobile cash-in, either. It's a bonafide big-budget console/PC production backed by THQ.
On top of that, Parker and Stone are both writing and performing dialog, according to Game Informer. In other words, expect some of the most profane, probably amazing dialog options ever conceived. The game's set for release "sometime in 2012," but expect more info as soon as the new Game Informer issue hits.
Now then, precisely how many copies of this game will I need to buy to get a Team America FPS that relentlessly mocks the current glut of modern war shooters? Honestly, even all of them is an acceptable answer.
There are three problems with this, the last story-based New Vegas DLC pack, and two of them are in the title. It’s an almost relentlessly linear trudge from one side of a rubble-strewn canyon to the other, with only an endearingly bleepy new ED-E eyebot for company. There are few sidequests along the way, few surprises, and only a handful of secrets for you to discover.
Whoops, I seem to have accidentally put all the information in the headline, but it's still good news for those of us who didn't buy any DLC packs because we knew that it would inevitably end up bundled in a single, better value package. VG247 say that, along with the original game, the Ultimate Edition includes the Dead Money, Honest Hearts, Old World Blues, Lonesome Road, Courier’s Stash, and Gun Runners’ Arsenal DLC packs, and will be out on February 7 in North America and February 10 in Europe. No pricing details yet.
Our own Tom Hatfield insists that he'll be skipping Skyrim on launch and picking it up sometime later in a similar deal once the mod community's had a good crack at it and any bugs and glitches have been ironed out. My prediction is that he'll break within a week. What do you think?