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Darkest Dungeon
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Poll Watch

How much will Grimoire sell
This is Skyrim stuff
11.63%

5 figures easily
2.33%

somewhere between 10 and 50K
30.23%

Below 10K
23.26%

In the low 1000's
23.26%

3 figures only
2.33%

Somewhere around 100
6.98%

Vote

Expected Releases

Jul: Grimoire
Jul: Demons Age
Jul: Shadowhand
Jul: Children of Zodiarcs
Jul: Pyre

Sunday - June 25, 2017

Endless Space 2 - New free Content

by Hiddenx, 08:53

PCGamesN reports that Endless Space 2 got a new questline:

Endless Space 2's new hero is trapped inside a neutron star

[...]

As you might infer from its title, the Stellar Prisoner’s new questline concerns a mysterious figure who is literally imprisoned in a neutron star. It also appears that neutron stars will be objectives in a battle arena mode, conferring special bonuses to whomever controls them.

Features include:

  • Neutron Star: a battle arena that provides bonuses to players who control this special node.
  • A new quest triggered upon the discovery of the Neutron Star.
  • A new Endless Virtual hero.
  • A new Cravers Prime hero, unlocked by the community during an ARG.
  • Two new, unique planets.
  • Modding improvements, including the ability to edit visuals (hero, quests, events) and textures (planets, ships).
  • General performance and AI improvements - there's a full set of patch notes here on Steam.

Thanks Farflame!

Non-RPG General News

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Unknown
Genre: Unknown
Platform: Unknown
Release: In development

Details

Mount & Blade II - Preview @ E3

by Hiddenx, 08:47

COG checked out Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord at the E3:

E3 2017: Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord Preview – Mount Up and Take Charge Again

Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord Preview

Let’s start off with some truth; I was not a fan of the first Mount & Blade game. Admittedly, I never played any of the expansions, sequels or spin-offs, maybe one of them would have been more appealing to me. However I do know there is a huge, rabid following for Mount & Blade – so it wasn’t a fault of the game, it just wasn’t a game for me. So, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect when I was set up for a meeting with TaleWorlds Entertainment to discuss Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord. Needless to say, after that hour long meeting, I was pleasantly surprised and honestly can’t wait to get my hands on the full version.

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Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord is a vast action game filled with epic battles and hand-to-hand combat. There isn’t a story, per se, the story is more about the journey you choose to take. One of my criticisms with the first game was the steep learning curve and lack of direction when you first start playing. The developers realized this and have introduced a set of objectives that you’ll work towards completing when you first start the game. Each objective is designed to introduce players to different game mechanics, which should do a better job of easing new players in (and re-introducing returning players).

[...]

Thanks Farflame!

Mount & Blade II

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Saturday - June 24, 2017

Kingdom Come - Preview @ E3

by Hiddenx, 10:06

New Game Network checked out Kingdome Come Deliverance at the E3:

Kingdom Come: Deliverance Preview - E3 2017

The open world western RPG formula is one that may be on the cusp of growing a bit stale, on account of the heavy amount of titles populating this realm of late. There has been a number of games that seem to be trying to out “Game of Thrones” each other with elaborate magic systems and fantastical, epic environments. But what about a game that completely wipes out the fantasy and stands on the strength and epic nature of authentic medieval history alone?

Warhorse Studios has set out to do just that with its new RPG, Kingdom Come: Deliverance. The extremely short version of the game’s summary might be “Skyrim without the magic and dragons,” but the subtle carvings of complexities within seem to stretch well beyond this simplified description. The game takes place in Medieval Bohemia (modern day Czech Republic). You aren’t a flame-wielding superhero in Middle-earth here, or even an important figure in some crazy alternate history timeline. You’re just an average shmo and blacksmith’s son, trying to survive the gritty everyday life of medieval Eastern Europe - and avenge the death of your family at the hand of a foreign king. The game takes place during the conflict between Bohemia and Hungary in the era of the Holy Roman Empire, 1403. History buffs such as myself are sure to take notice at the historical influence, but that’s not to say fantasy RPG traditionalists wouldn’t find plenty to enjoy as well. After all, the truth is often stranger (and often more entertaining) than fiction, is it not?

It was clear during the E3 2017 presentation I attended that the developers have poured a lot of effort into the gameplay. But perhaps more notably, they’ve conveyed a passion for history, and a desire to provide a rich, authentic scene by gathering countless details about late medieval Europe through intricate means. We’re not just talking looking at Google pics and glossing over old history books here - historians have actually been called upon to assist in creating an accurate backstory involving a German-backed Hungarian rule over Bohemia. Medieval engineers have been consulted to provide blueprints and rundowns for the modelers and artists to design castles, homes, and other structures of the time period more accurately. Works of art from the era have been studied and emulated for the art style of the game’s map system. Real historical figures have been included; and wardrobes, dialects, mannerisms, and daily routines of NPCs are all meant to reflect society at the time as well. Essentially, this seems to be shaping up to be a “medieval adventure simulation” more so than a straight RPG.

[...]

Kingdom Come

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Historical
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

ELEX - Gameplay Demo

by Hiddenx, 09:51

Another gameplay video for ELEX:

ELEX Gameplay Demo (New Open World RPG Game) 2017

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About Elex:

Advanced in technology, civilized and with a population of billions, Magalan was a planet looking to the future. Then the meteor hit.

Those who survived are now trapped in a battle to survive, a struggle to decide the fate of a planet. At the center of this fight is the element “Elex”. A precious, limited resource that arrived with the meteor, Elex can power machines, open the door to magic, or re-sculpt life into new, different forms.

But which of these choices should be the future of Magalan? Can technology or magic save this world? Or will this new power destroy all those left alive amongst the ruins?

Thanks to the open world, players have access to all five regions of the game world right from the very start. Go where you want, choose your battles and your allies. The only thing in the world that will stop you are the mutant creatures that live in Magalan’s Elex-polluted landscapes. Walk, run, or punch your jetpack into action. If you can see it, you can reach it. Open world role-playing has never been more open.

Find a companion, choose a faction and influence the world. In Elex there is no traditional class system. Instead you must earn the trust of experienced teachers to develop the skills you select. But, skills alone won’t be enough to survive in this harsh and challenging world. Your attitude towards the people you meet will influence those around you. Will you make an ally or an enemy? Is now the time to show emotion or take the course of logic? Every choice will forge the future of your game.

From swords and axes to bows, crossbows and harpoons, Elex offers one of the widest selection of weaponry in the history of role-playing. Pick up a shotgun, power up a plasma rifle or unleash a flame thrower – there’s a weapon and combat style for every fighter out there. Be it a hammer, a rocket launcher or the power of magic, Elex balances science, fantasy and brute force to let you choose the combat style that fits your role best!

ELEX

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Post-Apoc
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Release: In development

Details

Grim Dawn - Version 1.0.1.0 released

by Hiddenx, 09:30

The Action RPG Grim Dawn got a major update:

Grim Dawn Version 1.0.1.0

A wild update approaches! With this major patch, we are bringing you many quality of life changes, bridging some of the tech improvements we have been working on for the upcoming Grim Dawn Expansion.

This is a major step towards getting the expansion in your hands later this year and it is finally here!

With this update, we are also expanding on the awesome collection of Illusions available within the Loyalist Upgrade. Current and new owners of this collection will find two new helms available from Kory the Keeper in Devil's Crossing: the prestigious Helm of the Venerable Warrior and the bloody Pillager's Dread Helm!

We hope you enjoy these latest changes to Grim Dawn and hope to see you in the expansion!

(For GOG Users: the patch is still in the final steps of the release process, but we expect it to go live within the next day or so)

Changelog V1.0.1.0

[...]

Grim Dawn

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Hack & Slash
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Kingmaker - Funded!

by Silver, 02:09

Pathfinder: Kingmaker has reached its funding goal and has announced a new stretch goal at 600K.

New stretch goal - Magus

All of us were brought up among countless fantasy novels, shows, games and movies. And when we play Pathfinder at the table we want our character to be close to what inspired us in the heroes and villains from these familiar pages and scenes, to be able to do things like they did, and that's a major part of what RPGs are about. Yet while there is no shortage of traditional fantasy heroes, who fight with both sword and magic with impunity - from Elric of Melnibone to Geralt the Witcher, to even Jedi Knights, it's hard to make such a character in an RPG. Most standard sets of RPG classes either don't give you the possibility to play such a character, or worse, limitations on character development render these builds ineffective. Fret not, for we have great news! Unveiling our latest stretch goal, let us show you the ideal class for you: the Magus.

There are those who spend their lives poring over ancient tomes and texts, unlocking the power of magic, and there are those who spend their time perfecting the use of individual weapons, becoming masters without equal. The Magus is at once a student of both philosophies, blending magical ability and martial prowess into something entirely unique, a discipline in which both spell and steel are used to devastating effect.

Much like his martially adept colleagues, the Magus makes skillful use of melee weapons in combat. He wears his armor without being hindered in his spellcasting abilities like many other magic-users. The Magus prefers one-handed weapons, because of his signature ability, Spell Combat, that allows him to use his other hand to cast spells while simultaneously attacking an opponent with his weapon of choice.

From the secrets of his magical counterparts, he gets a vast array of arcane spells, which both include classics, like Fireball and Haste, and entirely new spells, like Greater Blade Dash - a spell, that allows the Magus to teleport to a designated point and attack anyone unlucky enough to stand in his path. The Magus also gets an arcane pool - a reservoir of magical energy, that can be spent to imbue his weapon with various enchantments or to restore the spells he has already cast that day.

His battle prowess allows him to dauntlessly cast spells, which other arcane casters fear to use, for these spells would require them to approach dangerous melee combat. The Magus excels particularly at using touch spells, like Shocking Grasp and Force Punch, because his Spell Strike feature allows him to discharge them not by touching an opponent, but by hitting them with his weapon of choice, inflicting upon the target both the effects of the spell and full damage from the attack, all as part of casting his spell.

As he grows in power, the Magus unlocks powerful forms of arcana that allow him to merge his talents further, and at the pinnacle of his art, the Magus becomes a blur of steel and magic, a force that few foes would dare to stand against. Available forms of arcana include, for example, new properties to enchant his blade with, getting a familiar (a magical creature that will serve Magus as a pet), acquiring new spells from the Wizard's spell list and the ability to use a wand as a second weapon in pair with his primary one.

Magus is a complex class with different paths of development to choose from. Players who are unsure whether they want to play a spellcaster or a melee combatant will find his access to both quite convenient. If you enjoy having the possibility to just quickly beat up a bunch of weaker enemies with normal attacks, whilst being able to utilize complex spell combinations in difficult fights, you will find the way of the Magus perfect. And for those of you who want the proverbial Jack of all trades, somebody with deadly skills in both melee and magic may find that the Magus fits this description, and in certain situations beats his specialized counterparts.

* All specific names are used only as a reference to original Pathfinder Roleplaying Game (R) entities and could be subject to change in the Pathfinder: Kingmaker CRPG.

 

Hail to the kings!

Owlcats.

Kingmaker

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Friday - June 23, 2017

General News - The best Sidequests

by Hiddenx, 20:53

Henriquejr spotted an article about the best sidequests on PC Gamer:

The best sidequests in PC gaming

Sometimes good things happen when you stray from the beaten path.

Stepping off the beaten path in any given game can open up a whole new world. Main story lines are fine, but side quests often contain better writing, funnier jokes, and more interesting mechanics. Sometimes they’re so good that when the credits roll, the distractions and detours burn brighter in your memory than the central journey itself. With that in mind, here’s a list of the best side quests on PC. Don’t blame me if you suddenly have an urge to reinstall that RPG you sunk 100 hours into five years ago. Oh, and leave your own suggestions in the comments below the story. 

Oasis, Fallout 3

“I had you brought in here to ask one simple favour. Would you kill me?” It’s one of my favourite lines from Fallout 3 within arguably its best side quest. Tucked away in the corner of the grey wasteland is Oasis, where flourishing plant life obscures a tragic tale.   

At the centre is Harold, a mutant with a tree growing out of his head. It’s grown so large that Harold is rooted in place, and he wants you to end his miserable life. But killing him will destroy this pocket of calm, stopping any chance of it spreading life to the rest of the world, and end the hopes of his followers. So what do you do? It’s a great opportunity to role-play, and the writing is superb whichever option you choose.   

The Harper Hold Quests, Baldur's Gate 2

Bioware’s 2000 RPG remains one of the best in the genre, and it’s largely down to its side quests. The Harper Hold quests are a perfect example: complex, fiddly at times, but ultimately rewarding. It’s all about the characters. Two of the best from the first Baldur’s Gate—Xsar and Montaron—return fleetingly (one dies, the other is turned into a bird), and most of the tale centres around Jaheira, and ties in with her excellent romance story.

It’s really, really long but you don’t have to pay too much attention. There’s splices of action—mainly fighting the Harpers—followed by days of downtime, and then suddenly a character will pop up on your travels to move the quest forward. It’s not something games do much nowadays, sadly.

[...]

General News

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Unknown
Genre: RPG
Platform: Unknown
Release: In development

Details

Wolcen: Lords of Mayhem - Update 0.5

by Hiddenx, 20:50

Wolcen: Lords of Mayhem got a new update:

Update 0.5 : New world map, new quests, new monsters and more!

Hi everyone!  

Update 0.5 is finally here! It may have taken a few late nights, but the team pulled it off and we are very excited to reveal our new world map and questline!

The new world map is much bigger and denser than the old one, and yet only represent less than a quarter of the final version of map! There’s new environments to explore, new monsters to kill, and other surprises! 

3 new randomly generated dungeon architecture have been added, which adds more variety to dungeon layouts. The new questline covers most of Act1 of the game, and will give you a preview of the lore and story of Wolcen. We will periodically add more content to Act 1, including side quests, treasure and optional bosses. You can now listen to the Main Theme of the game while in the main menu. This will give you a glimpse of the new original soundtrack being composed for Wolcen. 

A fog-of-war now hides parts of the minimap that haven’t been explored yet. This will further help with orientation in dungeons. All minimap icons have been redone and new icons have been added too.

We are aware that there might be some performance issues, and optimization will be a big focus for the next updates. You can get the game at a discount during the Steam summer sale. Now is the perfect time to jump in!  

There’s a lot more detail in the update’s changelog,  so peruse at your leisure! Have fun!

Wolcen Studio

Thanks henriquejr!

Wolcen: Lords of Mayhem

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Hack & Slash
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Van Helsing: Final Cut - Review @ TSA

by Hiddenx, 20:42

TSA has reviewed The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing: Extended Edition:

The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing: Extended Edition Review

Vlad tidings we bring.

Every once in a while, review codes turn up at TSA for games that have been around for ages. It’s something that hasn’t been helped by the many releases in the series, with three games coming in staggered releases across PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4. In fact, I assumed this was the trilogy encompassing Final Cut, which has been on Steam for over a year, but it soon became apparent that Neocore have decided to release the three games on console as Extended Editions in turn. Given the full trilogy Final Cut is sat in my Steam library I was surprised that a similar release was not forthcoming here

So The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing: Extended Edition (a name both to conjure with and to artificially pad out a review’s word count) is the first of the three and the sole entry on PS4 right now, as it lags behind the other platforms. It’s also out on Xbox One as of April, where the second game released in October of 2016, and the whole trilogy is already out on PC. Is this making much sense?

[...]

What’s Good:

  • Gothic atmosphere
  • Great companion
  • Generally well-written
  • Compulsive action RPG gameplay

What’s Bad:

  • Attrition replaces difficulty
  • Too much useless loot
  • Incomplete

 

The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing: Extended Edition is a good action RPG that is a welcome addition to the PS4, but is held back by some uninspiring loot, uneven difficulty and the decision to release the trilogy one game at a time. This version does include all of the enhancements from the Final Cut, but it’s difficult to recommend buying this alone when the full trilogy is so often discounted on PC. Given the likely future releases, I fully expect this to appear on PS+ fairly soon. So unless you have completely rinsed Diablo 3, and are bored of Alienation but desperate for more loot, I’d stake clear of this until the full trilogy is released.

Score: 6/10

Van Helsing: Final Cut

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Technofantasy
Genre: Hack & Slash
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

NieR: Automata - Review

by Hiddenx, 20:35

PC Powerplay has reviewed NieR: Automata:

Review: Nier: Automata

Never change Yoko Taro, never change.

The camera in Mass Effect: Andromeda is sometimes a little weird in cutscenes, zooming in too close to see anything, or looking in another direction entirely. Nier: Automata, on the other hand has one of the best, most intelligent and intelligently used cameras we’ve ever seen in a game. A single move from the camera lets the player know what is coming next and prepare for that eventuality, not necessarily by showing the player what is coming, but simply by changing angle. Much like the original Nier, Automata is a deeply strange and melancholy mash of genres roughly placed under the umbrella of JRPG. While it definitely fits that mould, Nier: Automata is so much more. It’s something that could only exist in videogame form, and even then, it's something so idiosyncratic that it could only come from Japan. It’s the story of androids fighting robots on a future Earth. It’s the question of what it really means to be human. It’s a story of betrayal and redemption, hope, evolution and endless cycles of despair. It’s a third-person action game, a side-scrolling action platformer and a twin-stick shooter. It’s bullet hell meets gothic Lolita in the post-post apocalypse.

All in all it’s a hell of a thing.

[...]

Verdict:

Sometimes frustrating but always compelling, Nier: Automata is a wondrous and strange experience that could only ever be a game.

Score: 9/10

 

NieR: Automata

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Post-Apoc
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Beyond Good & Evil 2 - In-Engine Demo

by Silver, 14:29

This video explores the engine being used for Beyond Good & Evil 2.

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Creative Director Michel Ancel shows a behind the scenes look at the first in-engine demo shown at E3 2017.

Beyond Good & Evil 2

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: Adventure-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

NWN - Revisiting NWN

by Silver, 14:22

GOG hosts a guest article which details how to get the most out of Neverwinter Nights today. Thanks Luj1!

Set up your own adventures, look for mods, and become the ultimate DM.

A celebrated classic never truly fades away and Neverwinter Nights Diamond is as deserving of this title as any RPG you will play. Beyond its exciting campaigns and rock-solid rendition of the D&D ruleset, the game's extensive toolset is an open invitation to the community, encouraging them to build and moderate their own adventures.
Bernhard "niv" Stoeckner from the Neverwinter Vault community has prepared a detailed piece where he explains how to go about doing all that.

[...]

Dungeon Mastering

One of the best things about Neverwinter Nights is the inclusion of a special piece of software, called the DM Client, that allows a player to become the organiser of a Neverwinter Nights module and campaign. This position is called the Dungeon Master (DM) in D&D terms. He or she controls all other aspects of the game except for the other players' characters: the monsters, the encounters, and all the non-player characters in the adventure are under the DM's command, just like in a pen & paper campaign.
The DM client, used in conjunction with the toolset, enables players to experience a dynamic story in a different way than most other single-player or even multiplayer games. It is an entirely different kind of adventure when you find yourself within a story or environment that is being brought to life by another person (not a program) who is moving things behind the scenes in reaction to your character's actions and choices. And if you are the kind of person who likes to create fun for other people, to co-write a narrative with others ‘on the fly' within the parameters set by the module and setting of your choice, you will thrive in the DM-side of the game.
[...]

NWN

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Thursday - June 22, 2017

Divinity: Original Sin II - Swen Vincke Interview

by Hiddenx, 20:24

Jarl Frank of the RPG Codex interviewed Swen Vincke about Divinity: Original Sin 2:

Jarl interviews Swen Vincke; Questions about Original Sin 2 and other things are answered.

The concept of plane tickets, bitch! has a long tradition on the Codex. In the good old days, it was often issued as a challenge when arguments between two posters got heated. Insults were traded, the other's taste in RPGs was derided, and finally one poster would challenge the other to a real-life duel, offering to pay for plane tickets to make it possible. Regrettably, none of these challenges were ever accepted. In the end, someone always pussied out - either the one being offered the tickets or the one offering.

While this time the context was different, we can finally claim that a plane tickets, bitch! challenge has been accepted and enacted, even though regrettably no physical violence has taken place. The challenge was issued by Larian, and since no-one else was available, I chose to represent the Codex and fly over to Dublin, where Swen would subject himself to a bunch of Codex Community Cwestions and I got to play a D&D adventure with some of the devs from Larian. Yes, a D&D adventure - using Divinity Original Sin 2's Gamemaster Mode as its platform.

Since the results of this were several hours of voice recordings, and I'm both a busy and a lazy man, it's going to take a while until all of those are transcribed. Also, these recordings offer enough material for multiple Codex Content posts that I decided to split this event into three articles: the interview with Swen, Edward's detailed explanation of how the Gamemaster Mode works, and a relation of the actual game that took place between me and the guys from Larian (which was loads of fun and played out pretty much exactly like a pen and paper session, except that we used screen and keyboard as our utensils).

First of these articles shall be the interview I conducted with Swen, where I made sure to ask most of the questions posted by the community in the forum thread - yes, even the embarrassing ones. It was quite a fruitful interview, even though I could've gone for more follow-up questions. Enjoy the inteview!

(Note: if you have posted a question in the thread and don't see it asked here, feel free to complain. I'll make sure to give your complaint the proper attention by not caring at all.)

==================

We got a whole bunch of community questions. Some of them are really stupid but I’m going to ask them all, anyway.

Sure, go ahead.

[...]

Felipepepe wants to know if you have changed anything about your design philosophy FUME that you have talked about five years ago.

I think it’s still there, because it’s based on my favourite game, Ultima. Freedom is the first letter of FUME, that’s still there, a universe in which you can develop your character is super important, so we spend a lot of time on developing it. When you see the lorebook that’s shipping with the collector’s edition you’ll find out exactly how much time and effort we’re putting in there. Then, giving you motivation to continue… we’ve spent a lot of effort on the narrative this time, much more than we did in the past. Hopefully we’re succeeding in that. And then we’re giving you interesting enemies, that’s everything related to our combat system, so that’s still all in there. Yeah, I think that’s still all there… you know, freedom also means systemics, right? Rather than scripting everything, like do this then do that, we’re giving you systemics and say here, there’s problems, now solve them. That’s still very much in line with what FUME was.

He also wants to know if things have become better audience-wise, because when you pitched Original Sin you said you had issues making people understand the game, as complex RPGs had been out of style for years. Has that changed now in your opinion after so many other RPGs have been released, that the audience is now ready for such complex games?

I don’t think Original Sin is a complex game. It certainly gives you lots of options and that makes it look complex because you see everything that you can do, but I don’t think it’s a complex game. I see that a lot, right? Original Sin has been very popular and we get a lot of people who never played an RPG before, and they pick it up and play and have fun with it. So in terms of audience acceptance, I think it’s actually harder – because there are so many types of RPGs coming out it’s hard to say to the audience, well I’m that type, and they might not necessarily know that, so that might be a bit of a problem. But in general, the biggest driver of sales is word of mouth. It’s not journalists, it’s not youtubers, it’s just what people tell each other, like hey, try this game out. If you have a game that’s fun regardless of what the genre is, and it’s something that interests you, then people are gonna pick it up. I think that’s the most important thing. You try to make your game good, and if it’s good and it’s fun then people are gonna talk about it and it’s going to sell.

Divinity: Original Sin II

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Demons Age - Delayed to July 14

by Hiddenx, 20:15

According to this tweet the release of Demons Age is delayed to July 14.

Thank you for the info Morrandir!

Demons Age

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Elder Scrolls Online - No MMO?

by Hiddenx, 20:07

PCGamesN reports that Zenimax don't call The Elder Scrolls Online an MMO anymore:

Why Zenimax don't call The Elder Scrolls Online an MMO anymore

If there was an underlying problem with The Elder Scrolls Online at launch, it was perhaps too online. Along with that anachronistic name, it took on the traditions of the ‘90s MMORPG and muffled some of the best traits of Bethesda games: a sense of place and permanence.

In the years since, however, developers Zenimax Online Studios have worked consistently to shed the strictures of their parent genre.

 

“We don’t even use the term MMO with The Elder Scrolls Online anymore, because really it’s not,” game director Matt Firor says. “MMO was a term coined in 1997 with Ultima Online, EverQuest, and Dark Age of Camelot – we are not that game.” 

Zenimax dedicated their first 12 months after launch to making the game “feel more like The Elder Scrolls.” They wound up with a world more tactile and reactive – where the thing you touch might be an NPC’s purse, and the reaction might be a cold sword through the guts, courtesy of a player enforcer in Zenimax’s justice system.

[...]

Elder Scrolls Online

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: MMORPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Non-RPG General News - Before the Storm Q&A

by Hiddenx, 19:56

A new Life is Strange game is in the making - some questions and answers:

Before the Storm - E3 2017 Q&A Stream

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This stream first aired during E3 on the Square Enix Presents channel and was hosted by Toby Palm (Life is Strange Community Manager) and Chris Floyd (Game Co-Director).

Non-RPG General News

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Unknown
Genre: Unknown
Platform: Unknown
Release: In development

Details

Outcast: Second Contact - Preview @ E3

by Hiddenx, 19:39

PSLS checked out the Outcast: Second Contact remake at the E3:

E3 2017 – Outcast Second Contact Preview – Other Worlds (PS4)

You wouldn’t be alone if you said you’d never heard of Outcast. It was a title I missed in that era. This was a wildly acclaimed game from 1999 that used an engine considered to be revolutionary at the time. It touted some of the most complex world to world interactions, particle effects, and AI. Outcast required a pretty high-end system to even run, so it ended up being a commercial failure. These advanced systems actually fit right in with our modern gaming now though, so a remake of Outcast makes a lot of sense, given the popularity of modern releases of classic games.
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Outcast Second Contact is an entirely fresh remake, built on the framework of the original, with a hero that looks like a retro-futuristic version of Nathan Drake. Aside from updating the graphics and tweaking a few things to live in 2017 better than it did in ’99, Outcast Second Contact is the same game that released back then, giving a whole new audience a chance to relive — or live for the first time — the title that received high praise from gaming publications. Check out the trailer above to see the side by side comparisons between the two.
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Outcast: Second Contact

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: Adventure-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

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The Tenth Line - Coming to PS4

by Myrthos, 09:06

Sungazer Software wrote in that The Tenth Line will come to PS4 next week. The game is a 2D RPG made in the Unity engine and was launched on Steam two months ago on the 17th of March. Here is the launch trailer from that time:

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The Tenth Line

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Wednesday - June 21, 2017

Call of Cthulhu - An eerie RPG

by Hiddenx, 19:41

PC Gamer likes Call of Cthulhu:

Call of Cthulhu makes an eerie RPG of survival horror and detective work

Stay with me here: it’s a walking sim RPG with Ace-Attorney-lite detective sections and sanity-driven survival horror. And it’s cool? It’s cool.

The most interesting part of the live demonstration I saw of Call of Cthulhu wasn’t when the eyeless monster crawled out of a painting. It was the heart attack the main character nearly had hiding in the closet while he watched it happen. Had he stayed in any longer, it’d be game over.

He has a fear of small, enclosed spaces, but that won’t necessarily be the case for everyone. Like Amnesia: The Dark Descent, Call of Cthulhu is a first-person survival horror game with a sanity system. See too many strange things, read too much impossible knowledge and you have a chance to get hit with a phobia, but exactly what that phobia is will vary.

So picture this: a Gone-Home-esque detective game with investigation scenes that play out like Ace-Attorney-lite, interspersed with puzzle and monster evasion sections. And as you flee in terror, you'll possibly be kneecapped by an assortment of random fears. Tight.

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Thanks Farflame!

Call of Cthulhu

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Historical
Genre: Adventure-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

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Anthem - Some Concerns

by Hiddenx, 19:37

Farflame spotted two articles that express concerns about Biowares new IP Anthem:

Playstation Enthusiast:

What I Want BioWare to Avoid With Anthem

Screen Critics:

Major Concerns With Bioware’s Anthem

Anthem

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

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Dishonored 2 - Female Protagonist

by Hiddenx, 19:22

Gamecrate reports that Dishonored 2 has a female protagonist because...

Feminist Frequency paved the way for a playable female protagonist in Dishonored 2

Unlike the original Dishonored, which featured two different male protagonists (one in the main game and another in the optional DLC campaign), Dishonored 2 allows players to control either returning protagonist Corvo Attano or his adult daughter, Empress Emily Kaldwin. According to developer Arkane Studios, the decision to make Emily a playable character in the sequel was based off of negative feedback it received for the first game.

More specifically, Arkane co-creative director Harvey Smith said that it was critic Anita Sarkeesian’s analysis of Dishonored, which she offered through her web series Feminist Frequency, which promoted the studio to re-evaluate how it portrayed women in the series. It was only after Dishonored was released that Smith and his team realized the game contained a very limiting portrayal of women as a whole:

“At first you take some criticism and you go, ‘Wait a minute,’ and then you go look and it’s like, ‘Wow, every woman in Dishonored is either a servant, a prostitute, a witch, a queen, a little girl, or a mistress. We had a mistress. That was not our intention.”

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Thanks Farflame!

Dishonored 2

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Steampunk
Genre: Adventure-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

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Shadow of War - Improvements for the Nemesis System

by Hiddenx, 19:14

Twinfinite reports that Shadow of War's Nemesis system will be better in comparison to Shadow of Mordor:

5 Big Improvements Coming to Shadow of War’s Nemesis System

More Variation, More Choices

Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor’s Nemesis system was easily the most unique aspect about the game, making it something truly memorable that even garnered multiple Game of the Year Awards. Well Monolith isn’t content with what they had in the first title, as they’ve drastically improved the Nemesis system, adding in more variation and choices than ever before. At E3 2017 we got an extensive hands-on session with the game, where we got to see a few of the new changes in action.

The basics of the system are intact, requiring you to damage enemy chieftains and leaders before you’re able to dominate them. Bringing up the main menu displays a whole hierarchy of enemy forces, leading all the way up to the army’s leader. During my time with Shadow of War I decided to first take down an enemy Warchief, warping him to my side in order to boost my forces and weaken the enemies’ before taking the Fortress Siege head on. Of course, much like the first game, in order to make the Warchief appear I needed to meet a few requirements.

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Thanks Farflame!

Shadow of War

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Action-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Diablo 2 - Remastered Edition Coming?

by Hiddenx, 19:02

AusGamers thinks that Blizzard will remaster Diablo 2 and Warcraft 3:

It Sounds Like Blizzard are Remastering Both Warcraft III and Diablo II

In a new Blizzard job posting looking for a Senior Software Engineer, the description hints at possible remasters coming for both Warcraft III and Diablo II. Yeah, this is pretty exciting news! This is in addition to the existing StarCraft HD remaster that is coming this year.

It's hard to read the following and not take it that Warcraft III and Diablo II remasters are on the way.
Compelling stories. Intense multiplayer. Endless replayability. Qualities that made StarCraft, Warcraft III, and Diablo II the titans of their day. Evolving operating systems, hardware, and online services have made them more difficult to be experienced by their loyal followers or reaching a new generation.

We’re restoring them to glory, and we need your engineering talents, your passion, and your ability to get tough jobs done.

Diablo 2

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: Hack & Slash
Platform: PC
Release: Released

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Alzur's Legacy - The Witcher Fan Film

by Hiddenx, 18:56

An Indiegogo campaign for the Witcher movie Alzur's Legacy has been launched:

ALZUR’S LEGACY (under Polish title “Half Century of Poetry Later”) is a short fan film (about 30’ long) based on Andrzej Sapkowski’s Witcher Saga. The project is being developed by an independent group of filmmakers engaged in film, TV and stage play production on the daily basis. The project is being developed as a non-profit endeavour and none of the creators or actors gains financially from it. Copyrights of “ The Witcher” belongs to Andrzej Sapkowski an other entitled parties.

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Thanks Farflame!

Indiegogo Games

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Unknown
Genre: Unknown
Platform: Unknown
Release: In development

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Pillars of Eternity - Comes to Consoles

by Myrthos, 16:29

Pillars of Eternity will become available for PS4 and Xbox One as a Complete Edition on August 29, 2017.

Paradox Interactive Bringing Pillars of Eternity and Cities: Skylines to PS4 and Xbox One

Best-Selling, Award-Winning Games Launching on Consoles This August

STOCKHOLM - June 21, 2017 - Paradox Interactive, a publisher of best-selling games across many genres and platforms, today announced that Pillars of Eternity, the critically acclaimed role-playing game (RPG) from Obsidian Entertainment, and Cities: Skylines, the smash-hit city-building game from Colossal Order, will both be released for new console platforms later this year. Both award-winning titles have been redesigned for console players with controller-friendly gameplay and UI, and will be available in August for their respective platforms.
 
Pillars of Eternity, originally the result of a crowdfunding campaign by over 75,000 backers, first released for PC platforms to broad critical acclaim, winning several awards for its rich story and deep, original world. Now, the original game, alongside the expansions The White March - Parts I & II, will be released as Pillars of Eternity: Complete Edition for the PlayStation®4 and Xbox One consoles on August 29, 2017.

Rediscover the world of Eora in the debut trailer for Pillars of Eternity: Complete Edition:

Pillars of Eternity: Complete Edition features:

  • Award-winning writing, story and artwork of Pillars of Eternity, along with the expanded world and content of The White March: Parts I & II
  • Countless character creation options, from races and classes to character backgrounds which drive your personal story
  • An epic universe to explore, filled with intriguing party members and companions, a variety of in-game factions, and a lovingly rendered world to traverse
  • New UI and controls designed from the ground up, presenting the Pillars of Eternity experience like never before

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Thanks Pinx!

Pillars of Eternity

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

.hack//G.U. trilogy - coming to PC

by Silver, 11:29

RockPaperShotgun reports that Bandai Namco is bringing to pc the .hack//G.U. trilogy of games. They were originally released on ps2 as single player action rpgs.

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Bandai Namco say that these remasters boast "updated 1080p, 16:9 widescreen picture, and 60 fps frame rate, gameplay balance changes and additional features to be announced in the upcoming months." Expanding a little, they say Last Recode will have "enhanced battle balance and game pacing to provide an optimal experience as well as a new Cheat Mode allowing players who want to just enjoy the story to start the game with full stats."

I've not touched the transmedia world of .hack myself, so here's over to Bamco for the official word:

"[. . .] the world of .hack focuses on the mysterious events surrounding a wildly popular in-universe massively multiplayer role-playing game called The World. .hack//G.U. begins after the events of the original .hack series with players assuming the role of Haseo as he tracks down a powerful Player Killer named Tri-Edge who killed his friend's in-game avatar Shino, and put her in a coma in real life.

I'm a big fan of ‘if you die in the game, you die in real life' premises but I suppose I could settle for comas.

General News

SP/MP: Unknown
Setting: Unknown
Genre: RPG
Platform: Unknown
Release: In development

Details

XCOM 2 - Inside Look: Assassin

by Silver, 07:33

This video for XCOM2 expansion War of the Chosen explores the assassin.

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Get an in-depth look at one of the Chosen tasked to take on the resistance: The Assassin. SUBSCRIBE for Inside Looks at new characters and enemies, features and insights from the XCOM 2 development team: http://2kgam.es/XCOMYT

XCOM 2

SP/MP: Single + MP
Setting: Sci-Fi
Genre: Strategy-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: Released

Details

Kingmaker - Growing a Story

by Silver, 00:16

Pathfinder: Kingmaker has a new update on the story and how Owlcat Games will expand on the original modules. Thanks Purpleblob!

Dear Pathfinders,

I've wanted to do a Pathfinder RPG for quite some time. When the opportunity came up, Owlcat explained they wanted to do something surprising - take one of Pathfinder's existing Adventure Paths (an interconnected series of six modules that act as long story) and turn it into a computer RPG.

So my first thought is - what the hell do you need me for?

...but the next thought was - I wonder how you could take a module and make it a compelling experience, especially if players may have already read it/played it. This wasn't anything new to me - it happened all the time in my early gamemastering days. Any time a new published module came out, every gamer would buy it, tear off the shrink wrap, then scour every page so they'd know how to find every secret and magic item.

Then innocently, they might prompt their idiot gamemaster to run the adventure. I know because I was one of those GMs. (And um, one of those players.)

But back to the question. So how do you implement a story that others may have already experienced?

There were a few simple answers - one is, what really makes the adventure? The players around the table. In the computer game, those players are you - and your companions. And all of you can bring stories of your own which can be interwoven into the plot and depending on who you travel with, suddenly the adventure has not one story but several, depending on your choices and which allies you've selected.

Second, when implementing a story many hold dear, be respectful to the franchise and the original content. One of the challenges is that the Kingmaker story is one a lot of Pathfinder fans have experienced and loved, so we want to be respectful of that - there are certain touchstone moments that are key to the experience and we want to preserve the moments that are heart and feel of the original story.

Third, expand the story in new ways. With Pathfinder, this is easy to do because the modules themselves are structured with an open-world feel, so the ability to add events, dungeons, and encounters is easy - the Kingmaker plot wasn't gated in the first place, so the adventure already has room for all these elements.

This is especially true of the characters in the Adventure Path. There are some in the Adventure Path that are described only as an event... and the GM is allowed to integrate them into the game as they see fit. And so have we. Veterans of the pen-and-paper adventure will find existing characters and NPCs in new areas, new ways, and sometimes, even with a new arc.

This also gives us room to introduce new allies, new foes, and a variety of side quests - some of which may grow naturally from the module's original content, and veterans may appreciate it even more because they'll understand the reason for these new elements perhaps quicker than most.

One example is the gnome explorer Jubilost, who players can encounter trying to ford a river early on in the Adventure Path... but in the computer version, you don't just encounter him, he has the potential to become a companion in your party.

Part of the reason for this addition is because Jubilost... despite his sharp tongue... is a great walking encyclopedia for any party, and a great way to introduce both the player and their character to the Stolen Lands, so having him as a companion in that role makes sense, and across the entire game as well.

But the evolution of Jubilost's role is just one example - we've taken many of the characters and expanded their roles and woven them into the plot and events in ways that Adventure Path veterans will understand - and some that will be a surprise. Expect a lot more content both from the Adventure Path itself and off the beaten path as well.

We'll have more to come in later updates, so stay tuned!


Chris Avellone

Narrative Designer, Pathfinder: Kingmaker

Kingmaker

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details

Tuesday - June 20, 2017

Battle Chasers: Nightwar - Preview @ COG

by Hiddenx, 19:22

COG thinks Battle Chasers: Nightwar could be the sleeper hit of the year:

E3 2017: Battle Chasers: Nightwar Preview – JRPG Sleeper Hit of the Year

Battle Chasers: Nightwar preps for its final release…

Way back at E3 2016 I had the privilege of sitting down with comic book artist/writer and legend Joe Madureira for a first look at Airship Syndicate’s, Battle Chasers: Nightwar. Funded on Kickstarter to the tune of over $850K, Battle Chasers is on the home stretch as it nears its October 3rd release on Steam, Xbox One, PS4 and Nintendo Switch. A lot of work has been done in the year since I first sat down with Joe and I was extremely excited to sit with him once again at E3 2017 to take a look at the near-final version of the game.

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Featuring fully voiced characters pulled from Joe Madureira’s cult favorite Battle Chasers comic book the upcoming turn-based RPG stands on its own from its written counterpart. Joe was quick to point out that fans both well versed in the comics and those brand new to the universe would have no problems jumping into the game. Superbly animated, drenched with style and promising hardcore, strategic turn-based action it should keep any RPG fan fully invested in its world. I’ll readily admit that I’m somewhat of a superfan of Joe and his work so my enthusiasm might be a bit higher than the average fan but I’ll also say unequivocally that Battle Chasers: Nightwar has enough meat to stand on its own against its peers in the turn-based RPG genre. As I said last year, if you’re a fan of old school games like Chrono Trigger or newer entries into the genre such as I Am Setsuna, then you should be proper excited for what Airship Syndicate has in store.

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Battle Chasers: Nightwar

SP/MP: Single-player
Setting: Fantasy
Genre: J-RPG
Platform: PC
Release: In development

Details