System Shock - All News
Wednesday - October 19, 2016
System Shock - Progress Update
A new kickstarter update for System Shock by Nightdive Studios updates us on how preproduction is going and shows us some concept art of a Cyborg Assassin and a Mutant Cyborg.
Jason here with this month's update. In the future, we're going to have other folks on the team write updates since it shouldn't be just me having all of the "fun" :-p
Things are progressing along quite nicely so far. We're currently about 30% through preproduction with most of our lead team assembled and are working on documentation and proving out our pipelines. This is typically the least fun phase of game development since it's a lot of meetings and documentation, but it's also one of the most important phases since it lays the foundation for the rest of the project.
One of the most interesting aspects of this phase is that we've been meeting with some of the original devs from System Shock 1 like Austin Grossman, Dorian Hart, and Paul Neurath. The goal is to sync up as much as possible with the original devs to understand what Shock meant to them, get as many details as possible about pretty much everything, and determine what they would have liked to do back then if they had today's tech. We're striving to do this brand justice, and that starts with the amazing folks that created it.
Every month, we'll compile some questions we've been seeing in the community and answer them as best as we can here.
Q: When will we be able to donate via Paypal?
A: We have all of our legal stuff sorted out for it, but still need to wire things up on the website and Backerkit. We'll probably have a bulk of it finished early next month, but probably won't bring it live until January since it will be easier for us to start it in a new tax year.
Q: Where are the forums?
A: I'll talk about that below :-)
Q: When can we expect our SS1 and 2 steam keys for our backer reward?
A: Daniel should be sending those out within the next few days. Keep an eye on your email address that you used to back our campaign.
Q: Can backers that missed the Discord invite still get an invite to the developer Discord server?
A: Yup! We'll have invite codes in our forums once they're up.
Monday - October 10, 2016
System Shock - Retro Analysis
AesirAesthetics takes a look back at the original System Shock:
This time we're exploring Cyberpunk, Sci-Fi, Body Horror and the most 90's name of them all; SYSTEM SHOCK.
I'm using the Enhanced Edition as footage but don't let that detract from the meaning.
System Shock is one of those lost gems, the kinds that only show up so often so don't let it pass by, jump on this and explore one of gamings greatest hits.
Thursday - September 08, 2016
System Shock - September Update
The latest kickstarter update for System Shock has details on new hires as well as what the team are working on in pre-production.
Phase - PreProduction
I'm going to start including what phase we're in from now on in these updates so folks can better gauge our progress. This month is the start of PreProduction for us, which means lots of documentation and fleshing out pipelines. It also means ramping the team up for Vertical Slice. We've brought on two new folks onto the team this month to help fill out our leadership ranks.
Kevin Manning has joined the team as our Lead Artist. I worked with Kevin back on Fallout: New Vegas, and since then he's been at a few places including Stardock and various contract opportunities. He's been in the industry for about 12 years and has a passion for all things scifi and cyberpunk!
James Henley recently joined us as our Lead Level Designer. James has been in the industry for a while with most of his work being done at BioWare on Star Wars: The Old Republic, Mass Effect, Dragon Age, and Jade Empire. He'll be leading our team of level designers to deliver on a challenging, yet rewarding, content experience and working alongside Chris Avellone to create the best visual storytelling environments on Citadel Station!
Nightdive has sorted out the business stuff and paypal is just about in place. The next steps will be BackerKit and setting up some funding tiers on the site. There's still a lot to do, so no ETA yet on all of that.
Nightdive's higher priority has been on bringing back the Nightdive website after a major overhaul, as well as bringing the forums online so we can better communicate with our supporters. The forums should be up later this month, and we'll issue another Kickstarter update with instructions on how Backers will be able to access the private sections.
Sunday - July 10, 2016
System Shock - Funded!
System Shock has been funded and with 18 days remaining. The latest update thanks the community and goes over Night Dives history with the System Shock license.
The journey started with System Shock 2 and the reception/support I received allowed me to seek out other like minded individuals who would help locate and revive more lost classics like: I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream, Wizardry, and The 7th Guest series to name a few. As we continued to grow in team size, so did our ambitions. With the release of The Original Strife: Veterans Edition and Noctropolis we were able to restore the games and add additional features. We fixed original bugs, included unfinished games mode, added support for widescreen monitors, and implemented OpenGL to update the visuals. Next was Turok, followed by System Shock: Enhanced Edition and an even greater desire to take our mission to the next level.
We had done everything we could to make the Enhanced Edition more accessible to a modern audience but it reached the point where we began discussing a remake from the ground up. We started with a core team and a simple prototype to see if we could capture the look and feel of the original game.
Friday - July 08, 2016
System Shock - Demo Patched and New Tier
The System Shock kickstarter has a new update where they announce that the Demo has been patched to include grenades among other things. Additionally there is a new $100 physical tier that includes an art book and a giveaway for a System Shock Limited Edition Screen Print Poster & T-Shirt.
Pre-Alpha Demo Patch #1 Patch Notes
This patch, which is now live on Steam, contains the following fixes and improvements:
- Texture filtering has been applied. The textures around the station will appear smoother and less pixelated. Let us know what you think about this change as we would like your feedback on it.
- Visual effects have been improved and as well the addition of explosion visual and sound effects.
- Fragmentation grenades can now be thrown by the player. Right-click on the grenade from your inventory to throw or assign it to the hotbar and throw with the press of 1, 2, 3 or 4 on the keyboard.
- "Staminup" patches, "BeserkBooster" patches, and Battery packs can now be used by the player by right-clicking on them in the inventory.
- New melee attacks animations have been added. The Hacker will recoil when hitting a surface with the pipe.
- Reduced the swing delay of the pipe.
- Shortened pickup animations.
- Music alterations applied to the backing music around the station.
- Fixed a bug with game settings causing controls to lock when reloading the game.
- Item descriptions have been improved for the items around the demo.
- Various performance improvements.
Tuesday - July 05, 2016
System Shock - Q&A and Patch Preview
Before getting into patch stuff, I'd like to quickly answer the biggest questions I've been seeing:
Pixelated / low-res textures - In the current demo, some textures look "pixelated" up close. This actually has nothing to do with their texture resolution. Before video cards became commonplace in the late 90s, textures did not get filtered. We're doing the same thing to have a bit of a retro touch. In the next demo update, we've switched from no filtering to trilinear. Some screenshots are below in the patch preview section
Orchestral vs. electronic music - We're going to have an audio update written by Jonathan, our audio engineer and composer, to go over this stuff in more detail some time this week. Until then, the short answer is that the final score will definitely be more cyberpunk than just straight orchestral. Also, the full orchestra stretch goal will not change the music style. It will make all orchestral elements crisper while maintaining the electronic pieces.
Story / plot changes - We won't be deviating from the main story or plot from the original. We will be rewriting most of the text (well, when I say "we", I actually mean my good friend, Mr. Chris Avellone). The overall story will be the same, but we might change some details/wording here and there for the sake of consistency and pacing.
RPG elements - We understand this is a pretty vague term and has been confusing to backers. The original System Shock was ahead of its time and introduced a lot of new elements to gaming. We want to preserve that innovation and present a game we feel modern gamers will enjoy. Our goal is to have the gameplay somewhere between System Shock 1 and System Shock 2, with sprinkles of BioShock on top (rich melee attacks and ranged weapons, vending machines, upgrades, and damage types). If there's enough of a demand, we'll add a "Classic Mode" to one of the stretch goals that disables all RPG stuff as an option.
Engine - Our pre-alpha demo is in Unity, and that is the technology the team has been using for the past several months. However, we are familiar with other engines and are open to exploring options that make sense. Changing engines during a project is a pretty big risk and not a choice to be taken lightly. At the end of the day, we will use the technology we feel is best suited to deliver the highest quality game with the resources we have.
As mentioned above, the current version of the demo is using point-filtered textures. In the next patch, we've switched this over to trilinear to see what our backers think. Here are some before/after shots:
Grenades and items
All consumable items should be usable in the next patch. The item that looks the most interesting to use is the grenade :-D
We've also improved the responsiveness and feel of melee combat.
On top of that, we have lots of fixes and some performance improvements. We're hoping to get the patch out within a few days. Once it's out, we'll post another update with some patch notes.
Sunday - July 03, 2016
System Shock - Feedback Process & UI
In the latest update for System Shock Remastered Night Dive is interested in gathering your feedback on UI and other things and are using reddit to do this. Expect this area of reddit to be updated with new questions and feedback with members of the Shock team answering questions.
My name is Corey from the Nightdive Studios U.I. // U.X. team. As a fan of the shock series since its inception, I feel extremely grateful for the opportunity to work on this classic remake.
Though the U.I. and HUD are still in a conceptual phase and will not be updated in the first patch to the pre-alpha demo, we thought we would share some of our concepts. Keeping in mind that this is only one direction prior to the full user interface and user experience study that will take place after Kickstarter - we are happy with the stylistic direction that has been explored thus far.
There are many challenges in redesigning the interface and HUD of System Shock (1994). There are a few antiquated features that have to be either removed or completely replaced. One example is the toggle-able ability to see behind your head with a cybernetic implant. The original game built this in as an "implant" or "ability" because the turn radius was quite low, making the player vulnerable from mysterious attacks from behind. This is just one of many things we are looking into outside a fresh modern look.
The new HUD concepts shown here are based off of a minimal yet futuristic cyberpunk aesthetic. Concepts for the new HUD will be based on the idea that this interface that the Hacker is interacting with is projected on his retina. The grid, shown above is meant to keep all elements aligned as though on a surface before they are "bent" for the radical look.
Saturday - July 02, 2016
System Shock - How will reboot differ?
Stephen Kick of Night Dive Studios was interviewed by Eurogamer about the System Shock reboot. They ask how the reboot will differ from the original.
Remaking a classic video game is an intimidating prospect. Stick too close to the original and you run the risk of releasing an archaic project that maybe doesn't hold up as well in modern times as it did in its day (see Doom 3: BFG Edition). Change too much, however, and purists will complain that the feel or tone is too far afield from what they remember (see Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes). Heck, even the best remakes still fall shy of their source material in at least some minor way. Wind Waker HD is a more vibrant spectacle than its 2003 GameCube forbear, but its new bloom lighting occasionally robs Link of some of his charm. Likewise, Resident Evil's remake (and ReRemake) are easy on the eyes, but the "better" voice acting is bad in a generic, boring way, whereas it used to be indescribably bad in a hilarious way.
The Vancouver, Washington-based Nightdive Studios is currently walking this tightrope on its remake of cult classic sci-fi horror game System Shock. We liked the demo, and the game's Kickstarter is off to a rousing start, nearly meeting its $900k goal in three days, but there's still a lot of questions about how Nightdive will approach a 2017 version of a 1994 PC game from an era where you could only look along the X axis.
To find out more about this, I caught up with Nightdive founder Stephen Kick at an industry event in sunny Portland, Oregon to discuss the developer's vision for a new System Shock.
When asked about how much of the game's level design and mechanics would stay true to the original, Kick says "We're maintaining the original vision and the original aesthetic and narrative as close as we can. But obviously the UI and player movement and just the way the player interacts with the game is getting a complete overhaul." To wit: there's now mouse-look and a handful of Kickstarter backers will make cameos with their simulated corpse and accompanying audio log offering new vignettes about the horrors that proceeded the player's awakening on Citadel Station.
When pressed for more specifics, Kick explains that most of the new system added will be cribbed from the game's bigger, better and more badass sequel, System Shock 2. "A more robust RPG levelling system is something we'd like to do - and what was successfully done in System Shock 2. I guess you could say that we're going to keep the narrative and level design pretty much one to one," he says. "We'll have some freedoms involved, but the overall game is going to play more like a hybrid between System Shock 1 and System Shock 2."
"We all really love System Shock 2. We felt it was such a wonderful progression from the first game when it first came out. By implementing those systems we're going to have kind of like the penultimate System Shock experience."
Yet even System Shock 2 is pretty archaic by today's standards. It is 17 years old, after all. Is there anything new to the series Nightdive would like to implement? Kick says there's a "very light crafting system where you'll be able to find components for different things and be able to assemble them in your inventor to create a health pack or some other useful consumable items." He also suggests weapon upgrades as a possible feature, depending on how things go.
"We understand how highly regarded the franchise is and how guarded a lot of people are about it as well, so we're going to use the utmost discretion," Kick says. "If we introduce something in early prototypes and it just seems off or it totally rebalances the core foundation of the game, we won't use it. We're not at that point, but there's going to be a lot of iteration and prototyping involved with some of these systems until we find the best fit."
While System Shock's remake will generously implement additions from its sequel, Nightdive won't stray too far from the path forged by Looking Glass 22 years ago. In fact, one of the reasons Nightdive is developing a remake rather than an all new title in the saga is because this will be the studio's first time developing a full commercial game from the ground up (even if it's based on an already existing title). Prior to this, Nightdive was a tiny studio that made a living restoring lost gems after their licensing had lapsed. It made a name for itself resurrecting the earlier System Shock titles along with other cult classics like the first Turok game and Harlan Ellison's horrific graphic adventure I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream.
Friday - July 01, 2016
System Shock - Kickstarter Update #1
Yesterday the first Kickstarter update for System Shock was made available.
Our fearless leader, Stephen Kick, the CEO of Nightdive Studios and Creative Director on System Shock has a few words to share:
I'm sitting at my desk after our first day of funding and I'm finding it very difficult to put into words just how grateful I am to everyone and the support they've given us over the last 24 hours. Your outpouring is inspiring and we're doing our best to answer the various questions, requests and concerns you have regarding the campaign, rewards, supported platforms and bugs you've encountered in our demo.
Here we go!
Platforms: We've been listening to your requests and have started discussions with Sony regarding a PS4 release - at this stage we can't confirm System Shock on PS4, but we will follow up with an announcement in the near future with more details.
The Demo: Thanks to everyone who has downloaded and played our demo - also thanks to those of you who have been sending us crash/bug reports. We're planning an update early next week that will fix various issues and bugs you've encountered while adding in a few additional features for you to experiment with.
RPG Elements: We're aware of the discussions going on and while there is still plenty of design work to do, we have the best intentions in mind of making a game that will both challenge the player, while still staying true to what people loved about System Shock.
Thursday - June 30, 2016
System Shock - First Impressions
In case you haven't gotten a chance to check out the demo yet, PC Gamer provides a bit of gameplay footage from the new System Shock. They really like what they see.
Remember Citadel? Absolutely, and if there’s one thing that really stands out about the new System Shock reboot, it’s that five seconds in, I’m home. To be exact, I’m in the Citadel Station that I think of when I fondly remember the series, rather than the blockier, low-resolution version of it that passed for the future back in 1994. Evil AI SHODAN is back in her original home, orbiting Saturn. All around are the corpses and blood splatters marking the human population’s last stand—a failed one. As the hacker accidentally responsible for the whole mess, you enter the story hoping to prevent things from getting even worse.
And yet, saying that the alpha demo is simply the same does it a disservice. This isn’t just an HD remaster, but a complete rebuild intended to take advantage of what was almost unthought-of technology for the time. It even adds a few clever tricks of its own. It’s System Shock, but it’s also new license-holders Nightdive Studios proving they can handle the franchise—System Shock 3 is on the way, in partnership with Otherside Entertainment. This is a chance to put their own stamp onto it.
Source: PC Gamer
Tuesday - June 28, 2016
System Shock - Kickstarter Started
The Kickstarter for the System Shock reboot has started a few hours ago and already raised $127K of the $900K goal. It has a demo that you can download from Steam, GOG or Humble Bundle.
System Shock is a complete remake of the genre defining classic from 1994, rebuilt from the ground up with the Unity Engine.
System Shock was one of the first 3D games that took a methodical approach to exploration while revealing a story driven narrative through audio logs and messages scattered throughout the game world. It was a revolutionary step forward for the medium in a time when developers first began experimenting with interactive story telling.
Players were trapped aboard Citadel Station as they fought to survive against the cyborgs and mutated crew members corrupted by a maniacal A.I. known as SHODAN, one of the most treacherous antagonists ever conceived. System Shock offered an unparalleled experience that would solidify it as one of the greatest games of all time.
System Shock - Gameplay Video @Polygon
Some new gameplay video has emerged from Polygon for the new System Shock reboot.
System Shock is back in this reimagining from Night Dive Studios.
Saturday - June 25, 2016
System Shock - Demo Coming With KS
The new System Shock Remastered will just be called System Shock, according to Polygon. A bunch of new screenshots have been released ahead of next week's Kickstarter campaign, which will apparently feature a demo.
System Shock is still getting remastered, but don't call it System Shock Remastered anymore.
Just ahead of the game's Kickstarter campaign launch, developer Night Dive Studios told Polygon that the upcoming re-imagination of Looking Glass Technologies' 1994 game has a new name now: System Shock.
"We felt that the amount of passion and resources that we are putting into this game elevated it beyond the expectations that someone would have for a remaster," CEO Stephen Kick said. "This is a full-fledged reboot of a classic game into something new."We've gotten glimpses of the reboot through early alpha footage and screenshots. When the crowdfunding campaign starts at 12 p.m. PT next Tuesday, June 28, nostalgic backers and the genuinely curious alike will have a chance to actually play System Shock themselves. A short demo of the Windows PC version will be made available to anyone through Steam, GOG and Humble the same day that the Kickstarter opens.
Polygon got an early look at that build, as well as the various rewards that will be offered just to those who back the crowdfunding project. Take a look at some screenshots above — we'll also have a full gameplay video up early next week.
We also got a preview of some of the campaign rewards. These include a collector's edition box with a physical copy of the game (launching on both Windows PC and Xbox One), a miniature and a manual, among other items; there's also a Razer-brand laptop with System Shock-centric detailing. There will be other rewards offered on a variety of tiers.
Thursday - June 23, 2016
System Shock - Q&A @Reddit
Night Dive Studios conducted a AMA on Reddit recently and gave out some interesting information about System Shock Remaster as well as Turok.
1. How much important is Warren Spector's role on SS3 project? I believe Warren is going to provide an incredibly solid foundation for the development of SS3. He's responsible for creating some of the most memorable and timeless experiences in gaming and I can tell he's eager to bring fans of Shock something new and innovative. Warren and his colleagues thrived during a time when hardware limitations dictated game design and I'm really excited to see what they'll be able to accomplish with the tools available to developers today.
2. How much money do you think you'll reach on SS Remaster's Kickstarter? I hope we reach our minimum goal of $900K - it will provide us with what we need in order to finish the game the way we envision it, but I believe we'll raise considerably more. We've gone all in on the Kickstarter and I think everyone will be surprised by what we have to offer. We're doing things no other crowd funding campaign has done and we're doing everything we can to differentiate ourselves from other high profile projects that have failed to deliver on their promises.
3. Turok 2 enhanced when? We're making great progress but that's all I can say!
One question to start, concerning the System Shock kickstarter.
It was mentioned that the music will be changed, and that it was being considered to include the original soundtrack as an optional DLC / kickstarter tier reward. Can you confirm if this is the case?
[-]pripyat_beast[S] 3 points 14 hours ago
Our current plan is to offer a remixed album of the original soundtrack to everyone once a certain stretch goal is met. We will have a playable demo track available on the Kickstarter page.
Video game preservation is a topic that concerns me. We have a lot of trouble with it today, but what about 50 or even 100 years from now?
We can listen to/look at music/paintings from centuries ago, but video games are different.
Do you keep source code for your remasters? Or source code that was provided by the developers?
Steam versions may run for next 15 years for sure, but what about something like 30-50 years into the future? You should have a well backed up database of source codes for all your games for very distant future.
[-]pripyat_beast[S] 3 points 15 hours ago
You're definitely not alone! We've been contacted by David Gibson at the Library of Congress who has started an initiative to track down and collect code, art, and anything else in hopes of preserving it. Lost source code is one of the things that genuinely depress me and we're currently evaluating the idea of releasing the code we've discovered and restored to anyone who wants to store it or modify it.
We've heard stories about the fate of Shock 2's code - apparently someone found a dreamcast disc in a trash bag that contained the code, but what became of that is anyone's guess.
If you want a little bit more information about the Library of Congress and where they currently stand with their collection/preservation philosophy feel free to check out this interview David Gibson recently did with David Wolinsky for his Don't Die oral history project
[-]pripyat_beast[S] 2 points 13 hours ago
1. What is your opinion on fan projects like Citadel? I've been following the progress on Citadel for a long time and I'm really impressed with what JosiahJack has accomplished. I fully support the project as long as it remains free and he doesn't attempt to commercialize it. I think it's admirable of him to have a working Git depot of his project available to the public!
2. Is there any plan to do a source-code release of any of the games you've re-released? We have released the source to Strife: Veteran Edition and we are planning on releasing more code in the future. Good luck with your dissertation, hope this helps!
3. In SSR, do you plan on retaining the ability to climb any surface that looks climbable? Currently in our build we have climbable ladders - you'll be able to climb other surfaces as well.
[-]pripyat_beast[S] 3 points 15 hours ago
1)Yes, the remake will follow the original very closely in terms of story and levels. The gameplay will be smoother and more streamlined mostly due to the reworked interface. We've taken what was great about Shock and Shock 2's interface and created a hybrid that fans of the genre will feel very familiar with. All the weapons and enemies will be there, but re-imagined and updated by the original concept artist Robb Waters. We've identified a number of areas in the game that we're going to expand by various degrees - we felt there were great story telling opportunities just waiting to be explored. Veterans of the series will definitely find some surprises this time around...
2)We're big fans of the difficulty level presented in the first Shock and would like to emulate that as close as possible. If someone wants a greater challenge, the time limit posed by the original is a great source of inspiration. Having the events of the game occurring in real time is not something that's explored in games these days and would be fun to bring back - or if someone wants a more leisurely experience an adventure mode (Difficulty 0) is possible.
Friday - June 17, 2016
System Shock - New Screenshots
Monday - May 16, 2016
System Shock - Remastered Heads to KS
The much-anticipated System Shock remaster will be heading to Kickstarter next month; Night Dive Studios hopes to tap crowdfunding to fuel the project.
A much requested remaster of System Shock is currently in development, and based on some early gameplay footage the Unity-powered revamp is coming along very nicely. It's likely we'll have to wait a while to play it though, because Night Dive Studios has announced that it intends to launch a Kickstarter campaign next month.
The studio posted a teaser video on its Facebook page earlier today alongside the announcement, which confirmed the crowdfunding campaign will launch on June 29. Given that it's a remake of a much-loved game, the likelihood of that Kickstarter being a success is very high indeed, but we don't know yet how much the studio is seeking, nor how advanced the development process is.
In addition to looking much more fancy, the remake will stay very true to the original – though the user-interface will receive some much needed spit and polish.
Source: PC Gamer
Thursday - March 31, 2016
System Shock - Remastered Expectations
The Gaming Ground share their expectations of and hopes for System Shock Remastered.
What I hope and expect of the System Shock remake
And that´s also why I got very excited when I watched Night Dive Studios alpha gameplay trailer for “System Shock 1 Remastered” (which I did one week ago), as the game looks freaking awesome! (the game runs on the Unity Engine). And since Night Dive has already proven themselves to be worthy of working with the “System Shock” IP (“System Shock: Enhanced Edition” received some really good grades and user feedback). I really felt like the remake of “System Shock 1” would be in safe and professional hands with Night Dive. Especially since Night Dive brought in System Shock’s original concept artist, Robert Waters. And not only that, Waters and Nigh Dive has the following ambition for “System Shock 1 Remastered”:
“After 20 years, we are remastering and re-imagining the original System Shock. We will keep the new game true to the classic experience, keeping all the things you loved, while updating the user interface and graphics to use a modern-day engine (Unity).” – Night Dive Studios
And based on what I´ve seen from the alpha gameplay video of “System Shock 1 Remastered”, I am very satisfied with the graphical aspect of the game. And it seems like Night Dive has nailed the creepy sci-fi/cyberpunk environment as well. It also appears as if Night Dive has taken full advantage of all the awesome Unity Engine, when it comes to shadow and lighting effects (check the trailer and the pictures in my article). Well, I find those graphical effects to be really cool at least. Any ways, besides that I got the impression that the in-game physics engine is pretty advanced as well (when you hit enemies, pick-up, drop and move stuff around).
Monday - March 14, 2016
System Shock - Remastered Pre-Alpha Trailer
Night Dive Studios have released an pre-alpha trailer of System Shock Remastered. The systemshock website mentions the game coming to kickstarter soon.
After 20 years, we are remastering and re-imagining the original System Shock. We will keep the new game true to the classic experience, keeping all the things you loved, while updating the user interface and graphics to use a modern day engine (Unity).
See more of System Shock Remastered at www.systemshock.com
Friday - February 19, 2016
System Shock - Source Code Discovered
@systemshock.org Stephen Kick from Night Dive Studios has started a thread to collect feedback from fans of System Shock 1 on what the new remake should do feature-wise. He reveals that they have discovered the source code to SS1 and will release it to the community. Some interesting nuggets of information in this thread.
This is Stephen Kick from Night Dive Studios and as most of you know we're currently developing a complete remake of the original System Shock. As we get further along we'd like to reach out to you, the Shock community that has kept the franchise alive for so many years for feedback, suggestions, ideas - anything that you'd like to share with us so that we can deliver an experience worthy of the Shock name.
We've also tracked down the source code to the original game and will be releasing it to the community once it's ready.
We will most likely be seeking crowd funding to complete the game so if you have any ideas for features you'd like to see, rewards, stretch goals, concerns, anything crowd funding related, please don't hesitate to share. This is a dream project for us and working with some of the original LG crew to bring you a faithful Shock experience has been an absolute pleasure - we can't wait to show you what we have in store.
Further on Stephen Kick answers some fan questions.
Thanks to everyone who shared suggestions and ideas so far - it's given us a lot to think about and consider. We're in the process of cataloging them all and will be discussing them internally. For now here are some answers/replies to some of them:
Quote from: antimatter_16 on 11. February 2016, 03:12:34
Multiplayer: This is another beast entirely and while I agree that co-op would be a great feature the amount of work involved will have to be carefully considered. It is something that's been brought up in discussion that we'll explore further down the line.
Level Editor & Mods: Mod support is another thing we'd love to include and would make a great stretch goal if we can determine the amount of work it will take to provide adequate tools to the community.
Soundtrack: We are composing a brand new soundtrack.
Quote from: Hikari on 11. February 2016, 07:17:16
I have a 4K monitor and have experienced how non-scaling UI ruins workflows.
We will have this.
Keep the horror house feel and sound.
We're completely re-designing the sounds, music, and atmosphere - it's still Shock, but it will be scarier. You'll finally get to see the full extent of Shodan's experiments on the crew members and the effect she's had on the station.
We are saving these for our SHODAN themed Angry Bird mobile game ;)
Oh! A manual.Quote from: ThiefsieFool on 11. February 2016, 08:49:32
We are building a "TriOptimum Employee Handbook" that will be a prop from the game, and include the standard stuff from a game manual.
I don't have much to say except this: make sure there are proper difficulty settings.We love the multiple difficulty levels in Shock and will be implementing a similar system.
Quote from: Join usss! on 11. February 2016, 12:32:13
-Try to nail combat harder than in the original game, as it is the core of the game yet was a little underwhelming If we're being honest here, even with all the player choice and freedom of movement.
We want the combat to be visceral and the weapons to have weight. One of my personal wishlist goals is to have a dynamic dismemberment system similar to dead space or the original soldier of fortune. There are so many great weapons in Shock, each one should damage enemies accordingly.
I also propose the typical hand-holders can be added exclusively to lower difficulties. Add new modifiers for navigation, namely objective markers.
Tuesday - December 15, 2015
System Shock - Everything about it
Gameinformer tells us everything we need to know about the System Shock series:
Everything You Need To Know About System Shock
Otherside Entertainment, currently developing the Kickstarted Underworld Ascendant, has revealed that they're developing a new entry in the System Shock series, the last of which was released in the tail end of 1999. Here's why that's a big deal.
Back in 1994 gaming was in a very different place. Game demos were passed around on floppy disks. Doom and Civilization ruled the world. Windows 95 wasn't even a thing yet. Looking Glass Technologies, which housed innovators like Warren Spector (Deux Ex), Doug Church (Thief) and Harvey Smith (Dishonored), was known for the revolutionary role-playing series Ultima and wanted to create an immersive simulation that wasn't fantasy-based. They opted for science fiction, and System Shock, a first-person adventure game that cast players as a hacker going up against an artificial intelligence known as SHODAN hell-bent on destroying Earth, was born.
At first glance, the original System Shock looks like a Doom clone. There are pixelated corridors where all sorts of nightmares lumber and roll about, such as reprogrammed droids or humans who have mutated into zombies thanks to corrupted cybernetic implants, all of them looking to turn you into red paste. However, the similarities end there, as the game reveals its role-playing tendencies by requiring you to use an inventory system to store items and to loot the bodies of destroyed enemies. Player movement is a bit clumsy and so is using the cursor to interact with the inventory or objects in the environment. As a result, System Shock is a game where you have to exercise caution to survive since you can't rely on twitchy reflexes to save the day. You have to plan your battles carefully while lurking in the shadows, learning which weapons work best against which enemies. [...]
BTW: Format92 spotted that System Shock 3 is coming...
Sunday - October 11, 2015
System Shock - Enhanced Edition Review @ Brash Games
Daniel Jackson (Brash Games) reviewed the recently released GOG version of the cult RPG System Shock:
System Shock Enhanced Edition Review
Having been a big fan of the original DOS game back in the very distant past i was quite eager to see what the “Enhanced” version brought to the table, and i was not disappointed. Restored by Night Dive Studios the game has had a big graphical improvement along with other changes too, but nothing that changes the overall look and playability of the original game.
The original first released in 1994, created by Looking Glass Technologies on DOS and was a horror scifi adventure game set against a rogue artificial intelligence where you were tasked with investigating the dark and empty corridors on a mysterious space station.
Its the year 2072, you play a hacker who after being caught by the authorities is tasked with hacking a super AI called Shodan, who happens to be in control of the Citidel Station. Offered a highly sought after military upgrade in exchange for the hack. Once the hacking has been done the hacker has an operation to insert the new implant. Put into a coma to help the healing process the hacker wakes up 6 months later, only for the station to be deserted and now under the control of Shodan, the AI who was tasked to take down and has now gone rogue.
At the time of release it was praised for its immersion and FPS control system which was rare back in those days and brought scifi horror to the forefront of video games. With such mechanics as an inventory system, a solid fighting system and rich and moody story System Shock soon became the game to have. Ground breaking in its innovation and style of gameplay, System Shock went on to influence many games of today. Most believe that Bioshock is the spiritual successor, whether you think that or not but what this game brought to modern fps adventure games cannot be denied.
The enhanced version boasts higher resolutions up to 1024×768, an improved control system with mouse support and the ability to redefine and bind your controls, easy stuff these days but not way back then. The higher resolution is very noticeable once played side by side to the original, as are the cut scenes and are a vast improvement. You can clearly see the fluidity in the gameplay from the original.
This is not a remake though, a lot of people think it is, but its not, its an enhancement and nothing more. It still has the old school mechanics which at the time of release were just fine but by today standards they do tend to grip on you a bit. I suppose its a case of being spoiled by modern games of today. You still have the clunky controls and the mouse controls which have been added are not quite up to todays standards of fps shooters. The hit detection also needs a lot of work as you can spend way too much time trying to hit the enemies with a stick or gun but they need to be in a precise area for the attack to work.
Other than that the game is pretty much the same as it was back in 1994, now with better looking out of control androids and zombified humans, which in my eyes can only be a good thing. Don’t go into this expecting a huge change to the original format.
Now of course this is still a game from 1994 which holds up to a certain extent but obviously compared to games of the same ilk these days may struggle to hold your attention. That said if you loved the original and want to go back some scifi horror nostalgia then i highly recommend you get the enhanced version as the changes are aesthetic and don’t take away from the game you loved as a kid.
Tuesday - September 22, 2015
System Shock - Now available @gog.com!
The original System Shock. Now available at gog.com.
System Shock: Enhanced Edition features:
- Higher resolution support: up to 1024x768, and 854x480 widescreen mode.
- Mouselook support added.
- Remappable keys with three profiles to choose from: original controls, custom controls, and lefthanded controls.
- Some original game bugs fixed.
L-look at you, hacker. A pathetic creature of meat and bone. Panting and sweating as you search for your wallet. How fast can you purchase a perfect, immortal game?
System shock is available for a launch discount. Get it while its hot!
Wednesday - September 24, 2014
System Shock - Developer Lets Play Video
Programmer Marc LeBlanc streamed a live play session on Twitch a few days ago with other developers who worked on the game, and shared there opinion on the game.
You also get a look behind the scenes of System Shock's development.
Tuesday - November 27, 2012
System Shock - The Making Of @ Edge Online
Edge Online has posted The Making Of System Shock 2, looking at the creation of the Looking Glass classic:
“Looking Glass was obviously a really impactful experience on me,” Levine explains. “It was my first job in the games industry. I’d met a lot of people who I really respected and admired – people whose legacy is more known to the intelligentsia of the gaming field, and is still being felt. I left because despite how talented the people were there, in some ways it was more like a university than a games company. There really was a dialogue about advancing the media, but not a lot about making successful products.”
Coming from a film-industry background, Levine felt the company needed to find a balance between art and commerce: “I thought, probably naively at the time, ‘Hey! I can do that’. I had no idea what that would actually mean, as I was a cocky guy who thought it’d be easy. We went off on our own and very quickly found it was challenging.” Almost fatally so. The company’s first project, a singleplayer version of early isometric shooter Fireteam, had been cancelled when its publisher decided to concentrate solely on multiplayer. This left Irrational at a loss, until Paul Neurath, head of Looking Glass, called with an opportunity. While they’d left Looking Glass, they were still on good terms with their previous employer. In fact, their half room was actually buried in a corner of the larger studio.
Neurath’s offer was incredibly open. Looking Glass had, in making Thief: The Dark Project, developed its own in-house engine. All of Irrational were experienced with it, having all worked on Thief. Why not make a game with it with us? Any game you fancy, really. “We immediately started designing,” Levine recalls.
Saturday - December 10, 2011
System Shock - The Cutting Room Floor
System Shock - The Cutting Room Floor is a different feature, with the author crawling through the original System Shock's resource files to find unused items. Apparently System Shock has a "wide variety of unused, unfinished, or dummied-out items, textures, and enemies, as well as text, audio logs, and other miscellaneous graphics".
Source: Blues News
Wednesday - July 13, 2011
System Shock - The Lost History @ G4TV
There's a retrospective of sorts on System Shock at G4TV that offers insight on why we'll never get a System Shock 3. Here's a sample:
So why can’t you buy the System Shock games through download services like Steam or Good Old Games, where it’s one of the most requested titles? And why hasn't anyone rebooted the series or created another sequel?
The answer is where things get messy.
EA's System Shock Story
In 2006, a trio of rumors hinted that Electronic Arts was making System Shock 3. First came a trademark application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Then came a couple of unconfirmed reports in Shacknews and PC Gamer U.K., with the latter publication reporting that EA’s Redwood Shores studio was handling development.
But even if EA wanted to publish another System Shock, the company didn't have the rights to do so. Back when the original game was made, producer Warren Spector negotiated a deal in which EA got the trademark to the series, while the developers at Looking Glass Studios kept the rights. To create another System Shock game, you need both. "My thinking was it would force us to be married so it never would be that either party should be able to say we own that, we’re making the next game, screw you," Spector told the San Jose Mercury News last November.
Saturday - February 06, 2010
System Shock - Mouselook Mod
EvilKoala points us in the direction of a Rock, Paper, Shotgun newsbit about a mod for System Shock that adds mouselook, key configs and other niceties. Many, many years ago, I remember ordering System Shock for my store and (at the time) dismissing it as "stupid" because I struggled to even move around. History shows how wrong I was but it would be hard to underestimate how nice mouselook would be to replay this classic.
Thursday - May 21, 2009
System Shock - Retrospective @ Resolution
Following their article on memorable bastards, Resolution Magazine takes a look back at Looking Glass' System Shock:
So it’s an odd experience to be playing a game about technophobia and the future of computers, now we’re that much further down the road of digital progress. System Shock’s a game that sat between Doom and its sequel on the early-shooter release schedule, born of an era when the technology to power something deep and involving simply wasn’t available.
Or was it? System Shock may look crude on the outside, but revisiting it 15 years later leads to a surprising discovery. For all the low resolutions, blocky, primary-colour textures and sprite-based enemies, Looking Glass’ seminal FPS/RPG still works beautifully. Its heavy stylisation transcends digital horsepower. Its presentation still takes over each and every sense in turn. System Shock in no way feels 15 years old. It’s as modern, polished and captivating as anything you like. There’s a lesson there somewhere.