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December 15th, 2013, 16:03
Rock, Paper, Shotgun has a new interview with Feargus Urquhart about ideas for a second kickstarter. Seems Obsidian might be following inxile's example.

At this point, I think it would be fair to say that Obsidian would be kind of silly to not do another Kickstarter. I know it, you know it, and – heck – Obsidian definitely knows it. Pillars of Eternity isn’t the sort of thing you just toss out of the nest and abandon to the ravenous fangs of time. Not if you can avoid it. Kickstarter let Obsidian don its old Black Isle duds and relive its heyday. That was never supposed to happen. Old-school PC RPGs were dead. Dead like punk rock, dead like face-to-face communication, dead like, well, PC gaming.

But some things don’t actually die. They just go dormant, and then they evolve. And once you’ve kicked off an evolutionary growth spurt, the next big question is obvious: how do you keep it going? That’s where Obsidian’s at these days. It can make games like it used to again, but with the aid of shiny new tech, lower costs, and viewers like you. In some ways, it’s uncharted territory, but in others, the blueprint’s been around for ages – devoured by dust after years of disuse. Step one, then, is figuring out how to get rid of all that dust. Obsidian CEO Feargus Urquhart isn’t positive about anything yet, but he’s definitely got a few ideas kicking around.

“What I’m trying to figure out is, how could we make something that is more like a Skyrim for PC – forget console for now – with the engine we made in Unity for Eternity? Where we are with our conversation, quest, data editors, and all of that. If we were careful about scope and let Chris Avellone go wild with creating a new world, more of an open world, what could we do?”

“How much would it cost? Would it make sense for it to be episodic? Because going out there and saying, ‘We’re gonna make 100 hours of gameplay,’ everyone goes, ‘Oh my god, how could it not cost millions?’ But could we create ten hours and have people pay ten bucks? And generally when we say ten hours, it’s usually 15. But if we go with five episodes, then people get between 50 and 75 hours.”
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December 15th, 2013, 16:03
I guess, a couple things…

1) I'm not giving another dime to Obsidian until I see the finished, polished Pillars of Eternity.

2) If they want to make an open, Skyrim-esque world, why not go the more traditional game-production route and leave KS for the niche stuff that wouldn't otherwise find funding? I'm concerned about Kickstarter fatigue at this point.

3) Episodic game systems are lame. The only reason Walking Dead works is that it's a bat-shit crazy popular theme right now and it's a relatively well written adventure game.
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December 15th, 2013, 17:13
The problem with episodic releases is that you lose people with each addition and the quality eventually starts to decline due to lack of funding. You also have to wait much too long between each volume. Generally those haven't been a draw for me for that reason. I much prefer a story with a limited number of volumes and a dramatic end game that is planned from the start. A trilogy is about the right length; something I can pick up later as a single work.

I'm fine with them doing another Kickstarter. They're at a point where they need to start think about the next game they're going to work on, and if they wait until PoE is released and generating funding, they may have to reduce staff. Let them sell it on its merits, rather than going in with a Kickstarter completionist bias.
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December 15th, 2013, 17:23
Nothing that I read sounds like a very good idea indeed.

I definitely don't expect them to pull off what Inxile did anyways. I believe the time for this has passed (then again I've been often wrong about this stuff).

Even with the excitement generated by the PoE teaser and the general goodwill I have towards them I doubt I'd throw anything more than a minimum pledge their way for such a scheme and that would be against my better judgment also…
Last edited by JonNik; December 15th, 2013 at 17:54.
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December 15th, 2013, 18:02
I'd be much happier if he wanted to do something close to PE. Torment and WL2 are much more similar in concept than PE and a First Person RPG. I want them to do more of the same (PE). I would also guess the budget demands of a game who wants to compete with TES would be alot bigger.

I'll back whatever they want to do because I believe in the team, but I agree with earlier posters that this doesn't sound like the best idea to go through with.
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December 15th, 2013, 18:14
I recommend everyone reads the entire interview, and not just not my quote for more ideas. I will back anything they decide to make just because I enjoy their games. I don't even care if it's episodic.

The other bit of good news is Feargus admits there will be a second Eternity game. I hope this all works out for them after the way publishers have treated them in the past.

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December 15th, 2013, 18:39
Originally Posted by Couchpotato View Post
The other bit of good news is Feargus admits there will be a second Eternity game. I hope this all works out for them after the way publishers have treated them in the past.
Well yeah, that is more like it, but pretty much expected considering the investment in man hours and the ready made engine and the apparent interest in this kind of game.

I just hope they really think hard about when/if going to KS before #1's release.

Still can't wrap my head around an episodic "Skyrim like" game and would only back as a token show of support. Apparently though this is Feargus brainstorming at this point mostly…

Anyways, went and read the interview and I have to say that I am intrigued about the "licensed IP" that seems will actually be the next KS whenever that happens… Teases
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December 15th, 2013, 19:04
Originally Posted by JonNik View Post
Anyways, went and read the interview and I have to say that I am intrigued about the "licensed IP" that seems will actually be the next KS whenever that happens… Teases
Agreed. Original IP's are fine and all, but some licensed IP's are simply to good to not make games of. Although I can't think of that many games with a licensed IP that were good, let alone great. Tie Fighter and Kotor 1&2 made great games of the Star Wars license, but surely there must be others?

Or do you think he is refering to a game license where they are offered to make a standalone much like FO:NV?
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December 15th, 2013, 19:13
Originally Posted by tomasp3n View Post
Agreed. Original IP's are fine and all, but some licensed IP's are simply to good to not make games of. Although I can't think of that many games with a licensed IP that were good, let alone great. Tie Fighter and Kotor 1&2 made great games of the Star Wars license, but surely there must be others?

Or do you think he is refering to a game license where they are offered to make a standalone much like FO:NV?
I don't know what to think at this point. The man didn't drop a single hint!
What I get from what he is saying is that it might be an existing IP they chose themselves and perhaps not one they created either. He did say that someone approached them with something that he doesn't think will pan out also…

Anyways, I am certain he will start dropping some more hints as the months go by and PoE is nearing completion. Especially if they decide to go the Inxile route and start the Next KS before releasing Eternity at its final state at least…
(And I really think they ought to do this after they do a successful beta with PoE as a minimum. Personally, I would back a project with reasonable scope anyways…)
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December 15th, 2013, 21:32
Re-using the engine (if it's good) makes a lot of sense. It really lets developers focus on content.

I would really like to hear more about the ideas they have though. Letting Avellone go crazy in an open world project? Excellent. Episodic content? Don't like it. Existing IP vs original IP? Depends entirely on the existing IP - some are great, most are not.

Edit: Just read a few great ideas in the comment section of the interview. The best of them, in my opinion, would be a sci-fi RPG by Obsidian. That would be amazing, especially in either an original setting or an existing one that allowed some crazy writing.
Last edited by Maylander; December 15th, 2013 at 22:03.
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December 15th, 2013, 22:48
Yeah, scifi would be very nice.

It has been ages since I've played one! (MEs do not interest me in the slightest).

Maybe tomasp3n is on to something with those Star Wars games he mentioned
(and maybe Feargus drops "Space opera" at some point in the future )
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December 16th, 2013, 00:19
Episodic + Open World game does not compute.

I just don't understand how you could possibly make an open world game episodic. I mean, it wouldn't be open world if parts of it are only unlocked with the next episodes now would it?

I would love an open world game in this style though (isometric, etc). And sci-fi would be fantastic, whether open world or whatever. I kinda hope it's not Star Trek (pretty sure it won't be Star Wars)…but I'd still buy it. Gamma World would be awesome, but will never happen. Hopefully any sci-fi game would be their own new IP.
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December 16th, 2013, 00:54
Will love to see a horror RPG, I remember asking about this during the KS and they answered were once making a World of Darkness CRPG but the project was canceled when White Wolf was purchased…
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December 16th, 2013, 06:12
With how "safe" they played things, going with yet another Sword & Sorcery genre game, I really have my doubts about them doing genres outside the mainstream.
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December 16th, 2013, 07:56
Well, maybe they feel a bit more adventurous now that they have a successful KS and perhaps the makings of their own franchise in their hands.

I mean that episodic Skyrim idea sounds pretty wild…

I am sure it is feasible technically. They could i.e. picture that game as a collection of huge ass areas that they could release one by one. Each one could have a significant number of content (side quests, encounters and loads of handcrafted locations to explore) while only containing a part of the main quest. Then when the next one gets released it may connect to the others in a couple of places with a loading screen and with no story (or otherwise) related blockages. I know that would stretch some peoples definition of open world but as long as there is enough nonlinearity and enough leeway to do things in an open ended and out of order way both within an area and across them (and lots and lots of delicious exploration) as they get added I'd be fine with it…
(And also, I'd still only be interested in playing it when it was complete and actually felt like open world. Probably years down the road )

The main reason I am very skeptical against it is the level of investment and dependance on successive successful KSs or in Steam Early access traction that this implies. It could also tie up a lot of the resources of this modestly sized company and keep them away from much more interesting stuff they could be doing, some of them hinted in this interview…

Anyways, more importantly:

Originally Posted by gandalf.nho View Post
Will love to see a horror RPG, I remember asking about this during the KS and they answered were once making a World of Darkness CRPG but the project was canceled when White Wolf was purchased…
Isometric VTMB ? Sign me up!

Spoiler – And because I am turning into an old bore
Last edited by JonNik; December 16th, 2013 at 08:22. Reason: too many typos…
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December 16th, 2013, 13:06
Originally Posted by JonNik View Post
Spoiler – And because I am turning into an old bore
Sadly, a uncessfull attempt was made to create one: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/…ica-video-game
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December 16th, 2013, 13:38
Originally Posted by gandalf.nho View Post
Sadly, a uncessfull attempt was made to create one: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/…ica-video-game
Bummer, missed that one. I would have thrown some money their way for sure.

I am not sure I understand exactly how the gameplay would be though…
All they do on the video and updates is explain how Ars Magica itself works and not how the game itself would be. i.e I would not want a completely sim game played through a series of abstract screens but more like a half sim/strategy half iso tactical TB rpg myself (much as the PNP game is played: you have the Seasons planning, covenant management, research and item/potion creation i.e. in the winter and then you go adventuring on certain points. So a certain World built and maps to adventure on should be a must)…

Anyways, it is good to see someone at least making the attempt…
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December 16th, 2013, 20:33
I would love me some Arcanum 2, but I do wonder if&how anyone will manage to pry the license out of Activision's grip. I do hope if they do decide to go for a licensed game on Kickstarter, it is this.

I am not particularly against episodic content - I mean, depending on how it's done, it could mean I could play in smaller chunks. Or I could wait for the whole thing to be out and then play. Most important, of course, is that there is a clear schedule b/n the episodes - I believe TellTale's success with their various games is that they pump them out regularly - I'm not keeping up with their schedule these days, but back in the day when a new season of Sam&Max started, the next chapter would follow in a month (or so) at worst.

The other things that bugs me is exactly what would an isometric Skyrim ben what's the point of it and how exactly would that work as an episodic content? It sound puzzling. The best I can come up with is something not unsimilar to Divine Divinity, but won't episodic defeat the whole "open-world-ness" of it?
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December 16th, 2013, 21:30
Isometric Skyrim??? Is that what he means? I assumed he meant making a first person open world RPG. If he's serious about making an isometric open world game the size of Skyrim, I'll give him my next child. Well, maybe not, but at least I'd pledge a considerable amount.
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December 16th, 2013, 22:36
Certainly someone could pick up Skrim and turn it it into a game rather than a cheese rolling sim with vegetable collection and backwards flying dragons that expire when you look at them.
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