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Default Shadowrun Returns - Review @ Mortismal Gaming

January 2nd, 2022, 14:48
Mortismal Gaming reviews Shadowrun Returns as a first step in his retrospective of the Shadowrun Trilogy series.

Shadowrun Returns - 2022 Review

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January 2nd, 2022, 15:52
Fun game. Recommended. Strongest point is the writing. Then combat. Graphics is nice enough. My Big Font MOD is on Nexusmods for older players.
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January 2nd, 2022, 17:20
Didn't much care for the first game, but sequels were so much better. You can also play a mod of the first campaign Dead Man's Switch on Shadowrun: Dragonfall - Director's Cut.
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January 2nd, 2022, 18:17
I found the games a bit too linear, but still quite enjoyable. It's too bad we won't be seeing more.
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January 2nd, 2022, 18:23
Originally Posted by rjshae View Post
I found the games a bit too linear, but still quite enjoyable. It's too bad we won't be seeing more.
Rumor is HBS is working on Bloodlines 2 as they helped out Hardsuit Labs with it's development. There was also talk of other games but nothing has been announced.

HBS also said if they make another Shadowrun game it would be in a new engine.
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January 2nd, 2022, 18:42
This is a great trilogy, well worth playing, especially if you're a fan of the pen and paper game from years back. I hope at some point the company comes back to this franchise, they did a fine job with these!
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January 3rd, 2022, 01:01
Was pretty disappointed in the first one but Dragonfall, especially the Director’s Cut, was one of my favorite games of the year when it came out. Really great atmosphere, story, music. I loved it to death but felt like Hong Kong fell short of keeping the magic going.
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January 3rd, 2022, 03:13
Originally Posted by Couchpotato View Post
Didn't much care for the first game, but sequels were so much better. You can also play a mod of the first campaign Dead Man's Switch on Shadowrun: Dragonfall - Director's Cut.
If this is the mod you mean, it's through SR: Hong Kong. "Vox Populi" is basically an unofficial Director's cut of DMS.
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January 3rd, 2022, 08:38
Originally Posted by daveyd View Post
If this is the mod you mean, it's through SR: Hong Kong. "Vox Populi" is basically an unofficial Director's cut of DMS.
Yep that's the mod. I thought it was for the second game I was wrong.
At it's core, it's the same game. It's just updated to run in the HK era engine… So it includes the quality of life updates from the other engines. If you didn't enjoy the core story, that's unlikely to change for you.

This does ncludes a couple of new runs and a handful of the old ones got tweaked. It also has a persistent crew, like you'd find in DFDC & HK.
Anyway it's been over two years since I played the trilogy.
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January 3rd, 2022, 16:10
I'm the opposite to most folk.

I found Dead Man's Switch, AKA Shadow Run Returns more enjoyable, and completable, than the second game and, as such, never tried the third one.

The first game had a good balance of pacing between text, plot and action I found while the second game I felt suffered horribly from extreme pacing issues where you'd never be able to get into any kind of rhythm as one minute you'd be really engrossed in progression & then the next minute you're stuck stationary reading great swathes of text, neither hitting at the point where one felt like a break was needed from the other.
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January 3rd, 2022, 17:54
Originally Posted by lackblogger View Post
I'm the opposite to most folk.

I found Dead Man's Switch, AKA Shadow Run Returns more enjoyable, and completable, than the second game and, as such, never tried the third one.

The first game had a good balance of pacing between text, plot and action I found while the second game I felt suffered horribly from extreme pacing issues where you'd never be able to get into any kind of rhythm as one minute you'd be really engrossed in progression & then the next minute you're stuck stationary reading great swathes of text, neither hitting at the point where one felt like a break was needed from the other.
I felt like the third had a balance between both too, so you may want to try it out.
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January 3rd, 2022, 18:54
I kind of enjoyed how very different the games were, if that makes sense. And it totally jibes that some people will favor one over another, yet I'll say again that I believe all three are well worth playing.
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January 3rd, 2022, 19:50
Maybe that was the issue, maybe you've nailed it without realising it @Carnifex

Perhaps, by keeping the games so similar in gameplay mechanics and environment, but then constantly changing-up the gameplay-loop, they unsettled enough players by the time Hong Kong rolled around, whereby Hong Kong then jiggled the gameplay-loop a third time, resulting in much a more jagged response.

Perhaps they would've got better results had they kept to a fairly predictable gameplay-loop, but instead switched up the environments and gameplay mechanics?

If you see where I'm coming from in all the 'devil-in-the-details' jargon.
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January 3rd, 2022, 20:44
Originally Posted by lackblogger View Post
Maybe that was the issue, maybe you've nailed it without realising it @Carnifex

Perhaps they would've got better results had they kept to a fairly predictable gameplay-loop, but instead switched up the environments and gameplay mechanics?
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But isn't that exactly what they did with the three games?
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January 3rd, 2022, 21:09
Originally Posted by Warmark View Post
But isn't that exactly what they did with the three games?
Not really. The environment felt like the exact same environment & the game mechanics seemed pretty identical, right down to the much unloved hacking chore.

The only thing they changed was converting to a non-linear gameplay-loop, meaning the content was much more unpredictable in how people engaged with either text or progression.
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January 3rd, 2022, 21:44
I found all three Shadowrun games pretty average.

The setting is great, and I thought they got the combat right, but otherwise they're fairly linear and simplistic. The environments are disappointing because they're so static. They look great, but there's very little that you can actually interact with.

I enjoyed the stories, but I don't see myself replaying them.
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January 4th, 2022, 08:14
I liked all three games. The first one was more a proof of concept, though. The second one was most memorable (especially the last boss fight). The third had the best companions imo.

Btw, does anybody know what HBS is up to right now? My guess is they are working on VtM: Bloodlines II. You didn't hear much from them the last years, they were recruiting for a "Horror game" and they belong to Paradox…
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January 4th, 2022, 18:49
I liked them all but Dragonfall DC is definitely my favorite. Hong Kong suffered a bit from some "Walls of text" which could've used another editing pass. But still very enjoyable and it had more missions where you can completely bypass combat with the right skills if you're into that. I think Dragonfall only has one of those.

There's a user-made trilogy that I would highly recommend: 1. Antumbra Saga (Shadowrun Dragonfall), 2. Caldeoctt Caper (Hong Kong), 3. CalFree In Chains (Hong Kong).

In a lot of way these potentially surpass the official campaigns IMO. Particularly the latter two have interesting companions and a solid story with a good mix of dialogue & combat.
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January 4th, 2022, 18:49
No idea what they might be doing right now as a company, I'm just hoping they'll make a return to this franchise at some point in the future. They might even be one of the few that could score a kick starter success, based a lot on the Shadowrun name alone plus their earlier wins with these fine offerings.
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January 5th, 2022, 01:33
I'd love another Shadowrun cRPG. Since Microsoft owns the rights to Shadowrun I was thinking it might be more likely that we'd see inXile or Obsidian make the next Shadowrun game.
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