!!! Obsidian Joining Wasteland 2 – On One Condition…

By Alec Meer on March 30th, 2012 at 5:04 pm.

Here’s a big, bouncy ball of unexpected good news for you. Brian Fargo and his studio inXile Entertainment are, as you well know, working on a sequel to the seminal RPG Wasteland, and have successfully Kickstarted it to the tune of $1.6 million. Since exceeding their initial target of $900,000, they’ve been able to add Mac and Linux versions to their masterplan for the post-nuclear roleplaying game. But that’s not all. They’ve just been in touch to say that, if they can reach $2.1 million during the 17 days remaining on the funding schedule, they’ll be bringing in Obsidian Entertainment, including Planescape: Torment mastermind Chris Avellone, to help them make the game.

Oh my word. The minds behind Wasteland, Fallout and Planescape, together (or more accurately together again, in many cases). A veritable RPG supergroup. This has to happen.

Says Chris Avellone, “Wasteland is one of my favorite RPGs of all time, and when Brian asked if I wanted to work on the sequel, I jumped at the chance. While I’ve worked on Fallout 2 and Fallout: New Vegas, getting the chance to work on the spiritual successor to the Fallout franchise is a honor.”

Brian Fargo observes that “I have a history with the guys at Obsidian that dates back to the days of Interplay’s Black Isle studios. Together we created some of the greatest RPG’s of all time, from Fallout 1 & 2 to titles like Icewind Dale and Planescape: Torment. It is great that we now have a chance to reunite on a project like Wasteland 2.”

It’s about tools to speed up and ease development as much as it is bringing in addition talent, apparently. “Obsidian has an incredible library of story, dialog and design tools that they have used to create hits like Neverwinter Nights 2, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II, and of course, Fallout: New Vegas. Regardless of the tech we use to develop the game, experience with these tools will help us efficiently design the game without wasting time and resources on the tools needed for development.”

Let’s not forget, by the way, that Fallout main-brain and Troika co-founder Tim Cain joined Obsidian recently. This is going to be an embarrassing amount of RPG pedigree in one place.

This is also good news for Obsidian, potentially, who recently suffered a round of lay-offs. Hopefully this can help get them back to fighting strength.

So, you know what to do. 2012 really is the most extraordinary year for PC gaming, isn’t it?

I’ve also just finished a quickie interview with Brian Fargo, talking more about what this (hopeful) collaboration means, how the whole crowdsourcing thing’s gone and his plans for the Kicking It Forward philanthropic reinvestment scheme, which I’ll get to you as soon as possible.

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354 Comments »

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  1. Jason Moyer says:

    !!!!!

    • N'Al says:

      Eloquently put.

      • Blackcompany says:

        Brian Fargo should solicit some donations. See if he can ramp up sponsors by a, um, Notch or two…

        • FuzzieBoy says:

          I agree, he really should take all this stuff up a Notch.

          • westyfield says:

            Yeah, he should definitely get Notch to donate a shit-tonne of money.

          • ekuurh says:

            Yea, notch even donated a BUNCH of money to the humble indie bundles.

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          Big Murray says:

          What does Notch know about making RPGs, really? This is a collaboration, not a business investment.

      • moagsgw says:

        Effectively they created a reasonable single-player RPG that still isn’t exceptional, while killing the unique qualities the first game actually had..http://srt.bz/1

    • Gary W says:

      Quote taken from Wasteland 2 forums:

      To clarify some stuff: Obsidian will not do any programming. InXile is doing all the programming for this title. InXile is getting them in for design work and licensing tools.

      http://wasteland.inxile-entertainment.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=0&t=1100&p=18546#p18546

      • Brass_cankles says:

        Obsidian not involved in programming is good news. Design is their strong suit, and the Onyx engine seems pretty capable.

        • Khemm says:

          Bugs are a result of complexity and variables with a game, Obisidan usually have no time to iron these out.
          Compare their games to primitive Bethesda ones which revolve around whacking level scaled monsters over and over, and even Beth’s titles are buggy as all hell.

      • Khemm says:

        That’s enough for me. Now this MUST reach 2.1 million.

    • RegisteredUser says:

      I agree. How could he swap predecessor with successor!

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    alphager says:

    I’m deeply ambivalent regarding this news:
    On the one hand, that much concentrated RPG-talent has to be good, but on hte other hand Obsidian-games have had some bugs in all of their games after release (not all of them patched later up)…

    • LionsPhil says:

      The latter reason is all the more to plead for them to open-source the engine if it hits $2mil ;)

      But I’m ambivilent because Obsidian aren’t actually that good any more. New Vegas’ writing goes a bit pants once the LOLROMANS start showing up, and Fallout 2 missed 1’s mark.

      • Syra says:

        *shakes head dissaprovingly of your comment*

        How dare you sir.

      • Bhazor says:

        First of all the Legion turn up about 20 minutes in. Secondly, they’re awesome. One of the most legitimately hateful and intimidating antagonists in videogaming.

        Also Fallout 2 was way better than the first.

        • LionsPhil says:

          How can you be so wrong.

          • Havok9120 says:

            I’m not totally on board with the Legion part, but I don’t see anything wrong with his liking the second Fallout more than the first. I recently replayed both and, aside from the different setting (what a difference seven decades makes) FO2 didn’t lose anything to FO and, in fact, gained a crap ton.

          • InternetBatman says:

            It lost the text parser, which was probably a good thing as little as it was used.

          • LionsPhil says:

            What dethtoll said below, basically.

            You also lost Ian spraying you in the back full-auto because FO2 had more party control. I sssort of prefer the roleplaying stance of not having little-levers-in-the-head control over party members, but that’s a pifflingly minor one on the grand scale of things. (I wish you could have told Dogmeat to Sit and Stay in that military base, though. Bad dog. Bad. I only have 5,192 stimpacks left now.)

        • Kryopsis says:

          I agree with both of these statements.

        • dethtoll says:

          Absolutely not. Fallout 2’s a good game but let’s not put it on a pedestal it doesn’t deserve. Fallout 1 is the better game by far. Sure, it’s smaller, but that means the writing is tighter and the gameplay isn’t all over the place. Fallout 2’s difficulty progression is schizophrenic at best, downright meanspirited at worst.

          • Bhazor says:

            I will say that FO1 had a better main story. But everything else was better in the sequel.

            I played both games for the first time about 2 years ago and it’s not even close.

          • DrGonzo says:

            But Fallout 1 didn’t have any difficulty progression. It goes, recruit first companion in game, become invincible.

            I like em both. I think Fallout was a bit more lonely and atmospheric, Fallout 2 was funnier.

    • Grey_Ghost says:

      Their Publisher is probably screwing them over. They are probably forcing early releases for one thing, and failing to play test them which is usually their responsibility. Patches… I’m not sure if it’s the Developer or Publisher that determine how long a product is supported.

      • Bhazor says:

        Publishers,

        Lucasarts basically butchered KoTOR to release it the same time as an unrelated and very shit Star Wars film then prevented them releasing the additional removed content. Bethesda provided a crappy engine for New Vegas and the Vegas glitches were pretty much identical as the Fallout 3 glitches.

        That said there was no excuse for how frickin’ bad Alpha Protocol was. Sega seemed very supportive and were trying to build it up as a Mass Effect beater so I’m afraid any blame does lie with Obsidian.

        • UnravThreads says:

          And Obsidian didn’t shirk from taking at least some of the blame for it.

        • Drakengard002 says:

          How have people forgotten how SEGA stepped in and demanded that the game become more like Mass Effect?

          Alpha Protocol was botched because SEGA wouldn’t let Obsidian do their thing. There was a leaked official internal SEGA document at the time that covered the whole thing.

          • Bhazor says:

            Really?

            My understanding was Sega were quite indulgent with them and it was Obsidian who fucked about.

            Edit
            The only leaked Sega memo about AP I could find was this
            “Alpha Protocol
            Michael Foster, product evaluator, said AP felt barely RPG. Initial level too challenging for players. “Mass Effect felt more RPG.”
            Review notes sent to John Merlino a few weeks prior. After meeting Gerald mentioned AP is a high priority for his team.”

            Which to me sounds like Obsidian were struggling.

            http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=374846

        • DrGonzo says:

          Alpha Protocol was indeed pants. New Vegas was the best game I’ve played in years though. Much better than Skyrim even. Anyone who thought the writing in New Vegas was dodgy should revisit it after playing Skyrim and it’s bloody Shakespeare in comparison.

          Just appreciated an open world game where you could play the whole thing through, including the main plot and be an evil bastard the whole time. Just by removing Bethesdas insistence on you being ‘the chosen one’ in every single one of their games made it far better.

        • Werthead says:

          One of the reasons for complaints over ALPHA PROTOCOL is that Obsidian finished it and delivered it to Sega, who then delayed it for months and months. The assumption was that Obsidian would thus have had tons of time to have polished it and thus are deserving of the criticism for it coming out as bugged as it did.

          Unfortunately, what seems to have happened is that Sega just sat on it, didn’t do anything with it Q&A-wise, didn’t let Obsidian polish it and Obsidian then had to move onto their next project. By the time it was clear the game was bugged to hell and back, there wasn’t any way of dealing with it. I’m still bemused as to how that happened and why Sega let it happen, except possibly that Sega had just lost all faith in the game by that point.

        • Spoit says:

          Yes, they sure helped with the 6 month delay, conveniently putting it behind ME2, without funding any chance to make improvements

    • Bremze says:

      It’s silly that Obsidian has a reputation of their games being buggy when:

      1)Knights of the Old Republic 2, Alpha Protocol and even New Vegas all had their deadlines pulled in by several months
      2)Dungeon Siege 3 was very polished
      3) Both Bioware and Bethesda releases games that are far from bug free.

      I’ll chalk it up to ignorance, I guess.

      • Syra says:

        well said!

      • CanadianWolvie says:

        Very well said, I had just registered to say much the same things.

      • RakeShark says:

        I’m fairly certain that Alpha Protocol was delayed twice for a total of almost 2 years. I could make a Cryptic MMO in that amount of time. But somehow they still couldn’t make that game stable.

        • sneetch says:

          Were there all that many problems with stability in Alpha Protocol? I remember it ran fine on my machine.

          The AI on the other hand was truly moronic. A pity because the game was fun!

          • RakeShark says:

            In my case yes, I had stability problems among many others with AP. I don’t deny at all that it was a gem of a game, but goddamn jesus was it biblical trial of wills against the lack of polish and bugs.

          • LionsPhil says:

            Well, the PC port was completely unfinished, to the degree that it’s impossible to actually walk in it without plugging in a console controller.

          • DrGonzo says:

            @Lionsphil

            How about the hacking mini game with a mouse? I couldn’t do it for the life of me. Plugged in a controller and it was a walk in the park.

            Shame, because the story was fun to play through. It seemed to live up to the hype about choices and what not that Mass Effect didn’t. But the actual game part was abysmal.

          • Oof says:

            RakeShark, LionsPhil, DrGonzo

            I’ve played AP on the PC, with a mouse and keyboard. It plays just fine, and has exactly zero glitches and bugs.

          • LionsPhil says:

            Oof, I have travelled to Pluto by bicycle. I put a fishbowl over my head and encountered no problems whatsoever.

          • KenTWOu says:

            @Oof says:
            Zero glitches and bugs with mouse and keyboard? PC version of AP.has horrible horrible user interface. For example, it doesn’t hide your mouse cursor during hacking mini-game. That’s why sometimes you could click on the correct part of the code and click on the exit-from-mini-game button simultaneously!

          • Oof says:

            KenTWOu

            I can’t remember the hacking mini-game, but I do remember that I never had any problems with it.

            Do I own some super-special, magical version of Alpha Protocol… ?

          • KenTWOu says:

            @Oof
            If you can’t remember it, I talk about this hacking minigame:
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=urhnx2XrySQ
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=03taqew9-UE
            You can see, that mouse cursor is still visible while you are hacking, that’s why you can accidentally click on Abort button in the bottom left corner of the screen when you lock right part of the password by your mouse.

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          Lars Westergren says:

          >I’m fairly certain that Alpha Protocol was delayed twice for a total of almost 2 years. I could make a Cryptic MMO in that amount of time. But somehow they still couldn’t make that game stable.

          It was delayed yes, but any further development on it was not funded.

      • Blackcompany says:

        Well said indeed. People highlight bugs in Obsidian games and gloss over the utter disaster that is Skyrim on PC right now.

        • Grygus says:

          “Utter disaster?” I completed Skyrim before the first patch, and I hit exactly one quest that had noticeable bugs (since fixed). Your bar for such a description is extremely low. There must be very few playable games in your world. What a depressing place that must be.

          • Ninja Foodstuff says:

            On the other hand, he gets to hang out with the cool kids.

          • SkittleDiddler says:

            Nope, he’s right. Skyrim was a disaster on release, and people are very willing to give Bethesda a pass when it comes to poor quality control despite Beth’s long history with buggy games.

          • GiantRaven says:

            And my experience with all the Obsidian games I’ve played is that they’re not particularly buggy, judging from how they behaved with I played them. Games react differently on different machines. I’ve had more bugginess in Skyrim (although still not that much) than I ever did in Alpha Protocol and New Vegas.

          • LionsPhil says:

            It also depends what you do in the game.

            Even the venerable Fallout 1 has some nasty bugs in around the Adytum area, such as where you can set a script flag for killing people before you’ve even met them if you choose a certain path of dialogue, which then makes other people you haven’t met yet mad at you when you get to them. And that’s back when everyone was Black Isle and everything was this wonderful golden hue and petrol cost less than a pound a litre and there were kittens.

          • DrGonzo says:

            Skyrim indeed has had three would be game-breaking bugs for me so far. The main plot quest wouldn’t work, I had to go and extract files using a Fallout 3 extractor thingy and make it ‘load loose files’ otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to progress through the plot.

            I’ve fixed all the issues thanks to the community, but the pc release was disappointing. I’ve really gotten into the game now though with various mods and the like. Just feel the pc release was a side note. Crappy performance with naff graphics, game breaking bugs, shoddy controls and an unbearable UI.

          • Phantoon says:

            I wouldn’t call Skyrim a disaster, it wasn’t that good.

            It was just incredibly mediocre. I barely broke 100 hours played on it since I got it, which is far far less than my time in Oblivion or Morrowind. It just seemed so MMO-theme parky.

            It wasn’t bad, it was just dull, dull, dull. Oh, and the magic system totally sucked. And the UI. And the touted “random quests” as every character I’ve made has ran into that guy that makes me take the bow. And the voice acting direction (but for once not the voice acting, so I guess that’s an improvement). They said the PC version wouldn’t be second class but last time I played it still didn’t have the high-resolution graphics they promised.

            This disappointment in it comes from someone that bought Oblivion three times (two platforms, one as a gift). It feels like developers are chasing the “Call of Duty” audience, rather than their own.

        • Pugiron says:

          So Blackcompanu you have not played Skyrim or New Vegas, if you are trying to compare them on levels of Buggyness. Skyrim has some annoying bugs, FONV still crashes every hour or so. The fact you try to transfer all the blame to bethesda shows you are either an employee of Obsidian or his boyfriend.

          • Bremze says:

            Bethesda did testing/bug fixing for New Vegas.

            …Are you Bethesda’s boyfriend?

          • SkittleDiddler says:

            In the 100+ hours I’ve played Fallout: NV, the game has crashed once and I’ve seen several odd glitches (but nothing that brought the game to a standstill).

            Skyrim, on the other hand, crashed on me countless times, completely broke several quests, and offered me more bugs and glitches than I’ve ever seen in a supposedly “professional” game release.

            I gave up and stopped playing Skyrim after 35 hours.

          • deke913 says:

            What constitutes a bug? How many builds are possible in a pc? What video card, sound card, motherboard, HD, what software conflicts might there be on your system, drivers, etc..etc.?

            I am playing Skyrim currently on my W764bit, 4g ddr2, gtx 460 on ultra at 16×9 with no problems ..at all.

            On the other hand, I couldn’t get NWN2 to run at all ….even to load…on this same system. ( yet if I install the Mask of the Betrayer expansion it works fine but it came out much later) My complaints with Obsidian are from the playable time I had with the game. (camera angles, dialogue, party options)

            I loved NWN but they bastardized it in the sequel. If you want to make a totally different game than the original then call it something else, dont use the name to try to sell your version. (DA2)

          • DrGonzo says:

            New Vegas did indeed crash for me quite a bit more than Skyrim. However, I would just load the game back up, 30 seconds later I’m in the game again.

            Skyrim also crashes, but more importantly I’ve had my progress through the plot come to a stand still 3 times and had to use various convoluted solutions to progress through the game. That is much worse.

            This isn’t scientific or anything. But from my personal experience, New Vegas was slightly buggy and Skyrim has some major game breaking problems that still haven’t been fixed.

            Love em both though, and love Bethesda and Obsidian too. They brought us Morrowind and Planescape! Why can’t we like em both?

      • InternetBatman says:

        Here’s my take on Obsidian’s bug history.

        Alpha Protocol deserves its reputation for being buggy. It’s development was very troubled and it would take a lot more time to fix its systematic flaws. That one is on Obsidian.

        I didn’t play NWN 2 when it was released so I can’t speak to it, but I only encountered the rare camera bug in the version I played. It was dramatically better than vanilla NWN. Bioware released a turd of a game with a boring story and no interesting characters or places in the original one.

        New Vegas does not deserve its reputation. It is hypocritical to give Skyrim a pass for it’s many bugs, some of which are the same like creatures scaling up cliffs, and trash NV on it. New Vegas was also a dramatic improvement on its predecessor. The writing was far better. The world made a ton more sense, and they actually put some effort into the minor characters. I feel the game was unfairly reviewed by many of the same sites that were too generous with Alpha Protocol, because they felt that Obsidian as an entity was letting them down. You can see a fundamental problem in the review structure when Skyrim has a 92 metacritic on the PS3 and it was plagued with a very widespread-game-breaking, shutoff-your-system bug.

        Kotor had way more problems with cut content than bugs. I would kill to get the whole game, but it was a bit half-baked. The parts that existed were still brilliant and fun, but a lot of leads were never followed up, and half the game is the first space station.

        Never played DSIII but hear it’s stable, which is unsurprising since development was as much about the engine as the game.

        • Grygus says:

          NWN2 is one of my favorite games now, but it was in bad shape upon release. There was more than one bug that either stopped progression of the main quest or halted play altogether. The party AI was atrocious. There were numerous bugs in the feats and spells. The game was playable if you were lucky, but only just. They addressed most of these in patches, and mods fixed the rest. If you don’t like the mod your games it still has some gaping holes, particularly the party AI.

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        drewski says:

        DS3 might be polished, but I’d take a few extra bugs if they’d spent a bit of time fixing the awful camera instead.

      • b0unty1234 says:

        I don’t see what point 3 has to do with your argument. The point is that Obsidian, rightly or not, has a reputation for how buggy its games are. Extenuating circumstances surrounding their games notwithstanding, that’s the measure by which we have to judge them.

        • InternetBatman says:

          His argument is that judging based on reputation for bugs is somewhat silly when big companies with highly anticipated games get passes for bugs. Skyrim / Bethesda is a fantastic example, because reviewers were handing out the 90s and 100s while there are widespread system-crashing and ri-goddamn-diculous bugs in it like backwards flying dragons and horses that climb up mountains.

        • SkittleDiddler says:

          Yet somehow companies like Bethesda or Arrowhead get away with it.

      • TsunamiWombat says:

        For a long time I did indeed hate Obsidian for what they did to Kotor2 and NWN2, though these days I realize it wasn’t their fault. Especially with the realization that the publisher does QA.

        Reguardless of that I feel they definativly redeemed themselves from their image as “biowares retarded little brother” with their work on New Vegas, which was far and above superior to Bethesda’s Fallout 3 (which i’m not saying was bad, either!)

        • Jason Moyer says:

          Bioware’s retarded brother managed to make sequels to KotoR and NWN that surpassed them in nearly all aspects.

      • Lobotomist says:

        Obsidian are not great developers, perhaps its because they lack polish and commit to brief projects.

        But I think people also dont give them due credit. NWN2 – which i absolutely hated (as hardcore NWN1 fan) is in retrospect “project impossible” made true. Most complete D&D 3E rendition complete with multiplayer, editors and whole stuff NWN1 had. And they did it in minimal time.

        But then when it comes to RPG – story , Obsidian are like Sergei Bubka – so good they are outside of competition.

        • Wizardry says:

          Most complete D&D 3(.5)E game? That would be Temple of Elemental Evil and even Knights of the Chalice.

          • killias2 says:

            ToEE was designed by Tim Cain.

            Who works at Obsidian.

          • Wizardry says:

            I know this, but what does that have to do with anything? He had nothing to do with Neverwinter Nights 2 because he only joined Obsidian recently. In fact, I don’t think he’s been credited to any of their games yet. What’s your point?

          • Jason Moyer says:

            ToEE is complete in every regard except for actual role-playing, which is why people put up with the various D&D rulesets to begin with.

          • Wizardry says:

            You do know that combat is a part of this mythical “role-playing” that’s supposed to exist in RPGs, right? You can fight like a fighter, thief, mage, priest etc.

          • Lobotomist says:

            Sorry i would have to disagree.
            TOEE and to much much smaller amount KOTC (even mentioning it means you have not much knowledge of D&D) did implement turn based system very faithfully. But most of 3E rule set is unimplemented. Missing even basic things like many races or even base classes.

            On other hand NWN2 is maybe using “pause” combat system. But it has implemented great majority of D&D rules + plethora of additional supplementary rule books, areas , majority of monsters + prestigue classes. Really immense material.

            You really have to be into D&D to understand the amount of job needed to do that

          • Wizardry says:

            Implementing real-time D&D rules is as good as not bothering at all. This is why Neverwiner Nights 2 or any other real-time abomination could never be compared to even Knights of the Chalice’s three character classes.

          • Lobotomist says:

            I agree with you on that.
            But Obsidian didnt have no choice because NWN2 was a sequel and they dint choose the format.

            Still it does not make their volume of work put on NWN2 D&D rule-set conversion any less impressive.

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            Big Murray says:

            Wizardry only argues about this on here because the comments page is a turn-based combat system.

          • LionsPhil says:

            Does that mean that he won’t argue it in a continual stream of conversation down the pub, even if people stop to quaff from their pints after every sentence?

        • Bhazor says:

          How can you like NWN 1? Even Bioware said they through that shit together at the last minute just to sell their construction set.Now if you’re talking about the construction sets then they’re both very similar with the NWN2 kit actually being a bit more powerful if harder to learn.

        • InternetBatman says:

          I’m really just curious. I’m not being a troll.

          What’s so great about NWN1? I’m not going to complain about all its flaws, because every game has a ton of flaws. The biggest thing that stuck out for me though, was the three at most party. D&D is really optimized for groups of five, and the system just gets weird below four and really unwieldy above six. I really felt the system was more hacked together in NWN 1 and lacked some of the depth. This is just my opinion, and only as valuable as all such opinions are, but what did it do better? (Other than the difference between Mysteries of Westgate and Darkness over Daggerford.)

        • NathanH says:

          NWN1 is a really terrible game. It is by many leagues the worst Bioware game I’ve played.

        • Bhazor says:

          OK a very simple question Wizardry.

          What about real time D&D combat automicatically ruins it for you?

          • Wizardry says:

            Sorry mate but I’ve explained it in nearly 100 comment threads on RPS so far. I don’t feel like adding to it. Just do a quick search to find my reasons. I’d rather talk about Wasteland and Obsidian right now. Thanks for understanding.

          • Werthead says:

            I remember Wizardry offering a good critique of the real-time Infinity Engine’s problems, particularly the way the player could ‘cheat’ using the real-time system to avoid combat consequences that you would suffer in the (sort-of) turn-based pen-and-paper system (i.e. running off the edge of the map to trigger a load and avoid being hit by a spell).

            However, I don’t recall much of a reason being given beyond that. It should be remembered that the reason pen-and-paper D&D combat is turn-based is because the Dungeon Master cannot simultaneously run through all of the player and NPC actions that is happening in combat. It’s a rationalisation of combat that is required by the medium, and the D&D P&P combat system makes it very clear (certainly in 2nd-4th editions) that the actions are ‘actually’ (from the game world’s POV) happening simultaneously, with initiative determining in what order combat proceeds and which person has an edge over another. A CRPG is not so limited. In most D&D games that use real-time systems (with pausing or whatever), you can see the initiative orders and other elements being handled as they would be in the P&P game anyway.

            Overall, it comes down to aesthetic preference, and certainly it is not an objective fact that turn-based games are better than real-time or pause-based. In fact, I’d argue both mediums have benefits and disadvantages compared to the other.

          • aepervius says:

            I can’t answer for wizardry but I can give my own answer as a 3 decades various RPG and D&D player.
            A turn based game offer roleplay and strategy. If you make it real time you are making it twitch based. Let me clarify.
            In normal RPG, be it D&D or other , the DM offer a description of the situation basically and ask input from player. The input especially during fight is given sequentially, as DM being human. The SAME problem happens when you are a single human on a CRPG, western style : you handle a team, but can only concentrate on a few problem at a time, seeing and reacting. If you have a team of 6 chars, says Icewindale 1 or 2 , and it is in real time, then YOU the player will be missing details. That thief getting sluahgtered bottom right of the screen you miss ? Well that is because of real time. That opportunity you missed by sending a fireball into a grease area on the top left ? Again real time. You are abandonning a strategy layer, because you CANNOT as a single player handle all the opportunity and stuff happenning just like the DM above mentionend did the player sequentially you are also (as an average human) not able to handle all you player at a time, you can only do it sequentially, either by itnroducing yourself a pause, or by having ruler which auto-pause , in which case you are actually using a bastardised and bad version of turn based gameplay. But what if the other player are the AI ? Nope. Still no good. See in a RPG, I expect that all the action I can do , are the one my player character through his stats or role can do, and all which are forbidden to me are the one my PC cannot do. What does that means ? That means that my high dex super duper hasted char to be able to react much better than my poor human can with a mouse. If I miss something because I cannot react quick enough with the mouse that utterly break the roleplaying. And that is LIKELY to happen in real time. There are other similar example where by switching to real time , you introduce the human player habilities where they should have no place. Dexterity, speed, vision accuracy, distraction, etc… All those should have NOTHING to do with a RPG because they are not your character property, but YOURS. Which is why I have a similar opinion as wizardry. Gimme turn based any time you want to RPG.

      • grundus says:

        I haven’t played KOTOR2, Alpha Protocol (even though I do own it) or that other game you mentioned (I can’t find your comment now), but I’m currently embroiled in my second New Vegas playthrough after I accidentally left my first for about two months and forgot who everyone was, and may have even wrangled the game into an unfinishable state by killing everyone. Now I’m taking it far more seriously and apart from murdering the economy by taking everything from everyone I kill and selling it all to this one woman who gives me the full value for stuff (I have something 45,000 caps at the moment and that’s after buying a load of Gun Runners’ Arsenal weapons at 19-25k each), I can’t help but absolutely fucking love the game. I liked Fallout 3 (after I got it on PC, it was a travesty on PS3 (shockingly)) a lot but New Vegas took everything it did and made it better.

        It’s pretty clear that FO3’s DLC was testing stuff for New Vegas, like how Alien Epoxy became weapon repair kits and the ammo press = reloading bench (got to love making your own ammo), but the feel of the whole thing is just, to me, a lot better than it was in FO3. Maybe it’s because there’s a more well-defined border system for factions and creatures and such, like Black Mountain being where the Super Mutants that want to kill you can be found, or north of Sloan is full of Deathclaws, and off towards one of the Vaults (can’t remember which) is just full of Cazadors, then there’s the Legion east of the dam and NCR spotted around… It’s just a great game and I love Obsidian because of it.

      • derbefrier says:

        does everyone forget the horrid controls of dungeon siege 3 when it was released it was unplayable unless you used a controller.not to mention the bland gameplay and shitty leveling system. bad console port was bad. still pissed i wasted 60 bucks on that

    • dontnormally says:

      Brian Fargo should have no trouble finding actual, money-having, profit-expecting investors since he already has $1.7m (remember he said he’d kick in $100k himself).

      I’m very, very excited for this project.
      But c’mon.

    • deke913 says:

      I have to agree. While I respect Chris for his work on Torment, Obsidian has not been my “go to” choice for games for some time. I still detest what they did to Neverwinter Nights 2 and will have a hard time forgiving them for that.

      • Anguy says:

        I still haven’t played NWN2 but always wanted to (don’t know when, but soon) so I would be interested in what exactly Obsidian did to the series there.
        Would you mind elaborating that point a bit further?

        • Bhazor says:

          Obsidan made it into a much better game is what they did. I have seriously never understood how anyone could like NWN1.

        • Hug_dealer says:

          Nwn2 is without a doubt one of the best rpgs ever made. The story, the characters, everything about that game screams i am more than a game. The plot is so woven around 8 different groups, and all thier actions effect other actions. Take group from that game and the plot would have fallen apart.

        • deke913 says:

          I guess what ticked me off was the fact that it wasnt NWN. It was similar to the way they did Dragon Age, in that the 2 games are not the same. You had one character in NWN not a party (though you could have one companion). The camera angles were a pain to deal with, and the dialogue was garbage.(imo) I could not get the original game to run at all until months later when the first expansion came out and they changed some things. This is my opinion and I’m sticking to it.

          • Bhazor says:

            You’re right, they weren’t similar.

            Main difference being that NWN2 was a good game.

          • deke913 says:

            Simple enough to compare the two games. Just go count how many mods there are for NWN1 and are even still being made. Then go count the ones for 2. You don’t get that kind of community support for a crap game. Granted it may not be everyones cup of tea, but it was the right tea for me and many many others as well. I am sure some people hated Dragon Age and loved DA2. To each his or her own.

          • Bhazor says:

            And millions of people play Farmville and paid to see Transformers.
            Many people are idiots is what I’m saying and popularity doesn’t equate to quality in any way.

          • LionsPhil says:

            NWN1 also got a fair bit of culty nerd following for being released for Linux.

            NWN2 wasn’t.

        • Gilead says:

          My view on it is that Obsidian tried very hard to listen to the complaints people had about Neverwinter Nights when it was first released.

          People said it had a terrible single-player campaign, so they made a much better one. People were upset it wasn’t party-based, so they made it party-based. People didn’t like the tile-based terrain, so they removed it. People didn’t like the radial GUI, so they removed that.

          Unfortunately, many of these changes feel bolted on and clumsy. I don’t think they ever really worked out how the camera was supposed to work, so they just threw every option possible in there. (Three full pages of camera controls, Obisidian? Really?)

          And by the time Neverwinter Nights’ second expansion came out, most people had gotten used to all those original issues and realised that the main strength of Neverwinter Nights was its excellent toolset and potential for creation of multiplayer persistent worlds and single-player campaigns.

          The creation of which Obsidian then made much more complicated and impractical, with far too steep a learning curve and technical issues that made persistent worlds unsustainable.

          Effectively they created a reasonable single-player RPG that still isn’t exceptional, while killing the unique qualities the first game actually had.

          • Bhazor says:

            So having options for multiple camera styles is now a bad thing? You were never forced to change camera set ups.

            Yes the NWN2 kit was harder to use. It was also more powerful but by the time it came out modders had moved on or didn’t want to learn a brand new system.

            But if you’re using the kit as the measuring post for quality then Oblivion is the greatest RPG ever made. Do you think thats likely?

    • zbeeblebrox says:

      What makes me ambivalent about it is that, while Brian Fargo has a VERY impressive history – his recent past has been full of nothing, interspersed with random mediocre titles. And it seems like this is par for the course with the whole group. I wish them all the best, but I’m doubtful.

  3. Meat Circus says:

    …ALL OF MY MONEY…

  4. Enzo says:

    I pissed myself.

  5. lordcooper says:

    …mother of god

  6. Beelzebud says:

    Oh please let this happen! If the gaming community can get this to actually happen, my faith in humanity will be restored 110%.

    I’m almost tempted to clear out my bank account.

  7. JackDandy says:

    Sweet mother Mary…

    I put in 65$. I just hope it will be enough.

  8. Whiskey Jak says:

    That’s great news, although I’m not sure how 2M can be sufficient to fund a game made by two studios in this day and age, presuming that more than 1 or 2 people at Obsidian will help.

    Also, was it intentional and I’m missing a pun, or did Alec misspelled Obsidian three times?

    • Timthos says:

      Possibly Fargo and Avellone are fronting some cash for development. Also I’m sure they expect to sell the game beyond just the Kickstarter funding.

    • Dana says:

      The goal was 900k only.

  9. Premium User Badge

    tikey says:

    Ok, ok, I’ll give you my money. You had me at Obsidian

  10. Ninja Foodstuff says:

    Take my microsoft points!

  11. Beelzebud says:

    Keep this in mind, folks: Tim Cain – The guy who coded the original Fallout engine, and was a major factor in it turning out the way it did was recently hired by: Obsidian Studios.

    Interesting times, indeed. Holy shit I’m excited!

  12. Cerius says:

    What?

    The minds behind Fallout and Planescape are already at Obsidian. Nobody at Inxile actually worked on Fallout except Jason Anderson but they are “only” using old material by him.

    • Havok9120 says:

      Brian Fargo doesn’t count?

      EDIT: Oh, I just read further down the page. You seem bitter about….something. Might want to get that looked at.

      • Cerius says:

        He was the CEO. Didn’t actually work on it except for suggesting some things.

        I’m not bitter. Just a bit disappointed.

        I’m all for W2. I would be even more for W2 AND another new game like Fallout and Arcanum were.

        • Wizardry says:

          Did you play Wasteland? It was like Fallout, just with a multi-character party.

  13. wccrawford says:

    So long as Obsidian is helping with the story, and not the programming. Their track-record supports that role.

    Edit: The new update says that Obisidian will be helping with writing and design only, not programming. So everything is peachy. :)

    • Premium User Badge

      HermitUK says:

      Actually, while Dungeon Siege 3 was hardly unique, the game itself was very solid, and pretty bug free for something from Obsidian. They’ve put a lot of work into their in-house engine. And it even does isometric pretty well.

      • Blackcompany says:

        Just had the same thought: If they get Obsidian on board, they have not only the writing but most probably, an Isometric-ready game engine to boot. DSIII engine could to this, and honestly do it pretty well, too. Would save oodles of dev time if they don’t have to build an engine for this game.
        .
        I am considering contributing more than I have already. Just to help this happen. After all, if we get there it might also save Obsidian from the doom Bethesda basically consigned them to. That alone would be worth it for me.

        • Havok9120 says:

          Its not just the engine. The dialogue and other dev tools are also worth getting excited over if this happens.

        • deke913 says:

          I would have no problem with this if they would fix the camera. Otherwise the engine is indeed pretty solid.

  14. Cerius says:

    And this isn’t that good news for Obsidian. They would have made more with their own Kickstarter.

    • Beelzebud says:

      Cerius, when you’re passionate about something “making more” sometimes takes a back seat.

      • Cerius says:

        And they wouldn’t be passionnate on their own ideas? Really?

        I mean its great that they work on it but I’d rather have something original created by Avellone/Tim Cain and so on.

    • Bremze says:

      Also, working on Wasteland 2 doesn’t mean they can’t create their own Kickstarter project later on.

    • Alec Meer says:

      Doesn’t mean they won’t do something of their own afterwards, does it?

      • Cerius says:

        Afterwards? Its still takes a while till this gets released. And by then the sympathy bonus they would have gotten now is up and away.

        • Volrath says:

          This might just be where Fargo’s kick it forward idea will come into play.

    • Wizardry says:

      Why say this when Wasteland is by far a better RPG than anything that Obsidian has created? The more talent that goes into Wasteland 2 the better. Obsidian’s own project would most likely be story heavy drivel.

      • Vinraith says:

        See Wiz, now you’re trolling. While I agree with you on this topic, pretty much top to bottom, “better” is not something objective. Clearly a lot of people enjoy what you and I would consider “story heavy drivel,” and as long as they’re talking about putting out a separate project (rather than undermining a current one, like Wasteland 2) let them have it.

        • Wizardry says:

          Well, I did say “far better RPG” and not “far better game”. Those are two very different things.

          • Vinraith says:

            True, but there’s nothing in the OP’s statement to imply they care whether it’s a “better RPG,” only that it’s less the kind of game they like.

      • LionsPhil says:

        “Story-heavy drivel” is what Obsidian are regarded for. Either you like that, and would rather they could focus on it, or don’t like that, and wish they would keep it out of Wasteland 2.

    • b0unty1234 says:

      Obsidian needs to concentrate its resources on the South Park game and Wheel of Time, if that’s still in development. I’d rather they focus on those projects than lending a hand to another developer.

    • InternetBatman says:

      I don’t know if that’s true. A lot of Obsidian’s fans probably already pledged Wasteland and they could have had some legitimate fears about splitting the market. This could also give them some immediate breathing space, which they need after the layoffs and the big cancellation.

  15. povu says:

    That’s exactly what my mind did.

  16. Dances to Podcasts says:

    The title of this post is pronounced ‘chk chk chk’. Apparently.

  17. Tuimic says:

    Tim Cain works at Obsidian. Tim Cain. Brian Fargo. This must happen… TAKE ALL MY MONEY!!!

  18. Hoaxfish says:

    How much money do they need to get Obsidian onboard AND bug-testing?

  19. iZen says:

    What do you say about too many cooks in the kitchen again?

  20. Wizardry says:

    I don’t want Planescape: Torment/Knights of the Old Republic II/Alpha Protocol stuff infecting Wasteland. Having said that, if Tim Cain’s on board then that would be good.

    • USER47 says:

      I want Torment/Kotor 2 stuff infecting anything in the world:).

      • Wizardry says:

        Well personally I don’t want my Wasteland 2 featuring walls of text and I certainly don’t want to come away from the game thinking so and so was a well written character with an interesting personality. I don’t play RPGs for the same reason I read books.

        • Bremze says:

          This is a silly concern. While it’s true that Wasteland worked so well do to great atmosphere, not writing, I can’t see how having both would be detrimental.

          • Wizardry says:

            It’s simple. The more hand written content a game has the less flexible it is. When you have more content governed by scripts and dialogue choices the less the player gets to interact with uniform game mechanics. Invulnerable NPCs, less freedom of exploration and the inability to treat NPCs equally are some of the pitfalls of “narrative focused ” cRPGs.

          • Bremze says:

            All those issues come from a particular implementation. New Vegas was much better at the whole unkillable npc deal than Fallout 3 for example. What’s more, better writing doesn’t instantly make a game story-based, does it?

      • Zeliard says:

        “I certainly don’t want to come away from the game thinking so and so was a well written character with an interesting personality.”

        Someone actually wrote this sentence, and without a trace of sarcasm or irony. Fairly incredible.

    • Vinraith says:

      Seconded. This actually makes me wary of the whole project, honestly. Something like Wasteland is functionally at the opposite end of the RPG spectrum from something like Planescape. The appeal of the former is drastically greater than the appeal of the latter.

      • Wizardry says:

        Indeed. I wouldn’t mind if people like Chris Avellone writes individual quests or encounters for Wasteland. This could only be a good thing. But Wasteland’s old-school freedom is the opposite of the tightly scripted and narrative heavy games like Alpha Protocol, Knights of the Old Republic II and of course Planescape: Torment.

        • Vinraith says:

          Yup. I can’t help but take this as an indication that, despite having well over a million dollars in hand, they don’t have any idea what kind of game they want to make.

          • Doesn'tmeananything says:

            Brian Fargo has repeatedly stated what kind of game he’s making and for whom. I think there’s really little danger of the game straying from its preset path. But since it’s quite a venture, it’s understandable that he wants more experienced people working on a project which would serve as a further guarantee for the overall quality of the game.

          • God is Dog Backwards says:

            And bear in mind, Chris Avellone worked pretty heavily on Fallout 2. And Tim Cain, the guy behind Fallout 1, is also at Obsidian now.

        • Bremze says:

          I don’t want Wasteland to become story-driven, but writing and the Dungeon Siege 3 engine can only help. I guess I agree with you when I think about it like that.

        • Bhazor says:

          …………………………………………. so you want quests but you don’t want story? I have literally no idea what you actually want.

      • killias2 says:

        They’re also the people that made Fallout 2 and Fallout: New Vegas and were working on the original Fallout 3.

        Hell, Tim Cain works there, and he created Fallout. They basically have every major figure who worked on either Wasteland or Fallout. This is totally good news.

        • LionsPhil says:

          Fallout 1 and 2 are also heavily scripted talky-story. The stupid run works not because there is some generic algorithmic approach to making NPCs less useful to you based on your INT, but because a huge swathe of the dialogue was special-cased for a certain INT threshold.

          It is a different kind of game design.

          • killias2 says:

            I think the idea that Wasteland was entirely algorithmic is silly. I mean, there’s pretty much a set number of things you do in a general order. It’s no more dependent on ‘emergent’ gameplay than Fallout.

            I think the big departures for Wasteland->Fallout are: 1. Less emphasis on party/more on individual, 2. Very different battle system

            I guess your character’s background is more set in Fallout 1 than WL, but it’s not really a big part of the story. It’s not like you ever explore your character’s motivations or history or relationships to other characters or anything. It’s mostly a blank slate.

            I expected Wasteland 2 to maintain the party emphasis of Wasteland 1. I also expect a battle system that somehow meets in the middle. Other than that, I expect a setting and tone more in keeping with Wasteland, but with a basic systems approach similar to Fallout.

          • Havok9120 says:

            I believe you’re in the wrong forum if you’re campaigning against a new Fallout 1/2 redo under a different license. At least if you want more than a dozen people to agree with you.

            In fact, I’m not sure a forum exists where that kind of argument would gain a ton of support. Even at RPG Codex, and they’d be less polite than we will.

          • LionsPhil says:

            I am not arguing that. I consider Fallout 1 to be a high point of CRPGs and one of the best games ever made.

            It is different to what I believe Wasteland to be, though, and can see why Wizardry and other Wasteland die-hards may be put off by a change that tugs it in a different direction.

          • Wizardry says:

            @LionsPhil: I agree with that.

            To anyone who doesn’t understand, ask yourself why there isn’t unique dialogue for every single point of intelligence, from 1 all the way to 10. You’ll realise quickly that it would require a monumental amount of dialogue writing on the part of the developers. Now ask yourself why each point in an attribute like strength affects how much damage you do in melee. You’ll realise that strength plays a part in a mathematical formula and thus scales without the need for additional work.

            The problem with a heavy dose of dialogue writing and scripting can be pictured in a simple scenario. Imagine if each individual enemy in the game shouts out a line of dialogue for each point of damage you inflict upon them. So enemy A needs a unique line for 1 damage, 2 damage, 3 damage etc. Enemy B will also need a unique line for 1 damage, 2 damage, 3 damage. As you can see this doesn’t scale at all. The more grunt work an RPG needs in terms of content (dialogue) creation, the more restrictive the gameplay will be and you end up with magic numbers like 4 points in intelligence or whatever.

            Having said all that, Wasteland did do things the Fallout way. A lot of skill checks were binary things scripted into quests as “quest solutions”. In fact, that’s why Wasteland was so influential. It was one of the first cRPGs to actually have scripted multiple solutions to quests. It was this aspect that inspired games like Fallout the most, even more so than its post apocalyptic setting. Having said that, Wasteland worked so well for the same reason the Fallouts worked so well. You still had freedom to do what you wanted and the freedom to do things in any order.

            The big decline happened after Fallout anyway. Fallout suffered massively from being a single character game, but it was BioWare that pioneered the narrative heavy gameplay where you can’t run from the end of the game to the beginning of the game due to “story progression” that locks you in to certain places at certain times.

          • Premium User Badge

            Lambchops says:

            @ Wizardry

            If you or anyone else could correct me for any wrong assumptions I make here (what with having not actually played Wasteland) then I’d be grateful. I’d just like to question this bit of your post

            “but it was BioWare that pioneered the narrative heavy gameplay where you can’t run from the end of the game to the beginning of the game due to “story progression” that locks you in to certain places at certain times.”

            Surely Wasteland locks you into certain places at certain times. As I said above I haven’t played it but before backing the project (which I eventually chose to do because Fargo said in an interview they were planning on improving the tactical combat as allowed by computing advances. Which is good because the combat in the original looks like it would make me want to bash my head against a brick wall). I did a bit of reading and funnily enough the game locks you to doing certain things at certain times by having enemies that outpower you! Fancy that! I know you’re not a big fan of story-driven constraints in games and that’s fine, but I honestly struggle to see what the massive difference is between blocking your progress by saying “you can’t go in here yet as you haven’t found magical maguffin number 3″ or by having Bruiser McHuge (or as I saw it in one playthrough recollection, a bunch of bunnies!) slaughter your party the instant you walk in to a certain area.

          • Wizardry says:

            Well, the game does lock you in that way of course, just like every cRPG I can think of. But it also locks you out of certain end game zones until you gain access to them. But the majority of the game world is open to you and you don’t have to do many things in any particular order. Some people go to some places earlier than others, for example. It means that the player themselves has to discover what they can and can’t do. It’s up to the player to make the decisions about where it’s safe for his or her characters to venture.

            But my point is that it’s still a fundamentally different design than a story based game. In Wasteland (and Fallout) the developers didn’t consciously lock you in to a set of zones one after the other, with plot progression taking place in a fixed sequence. You were instead constrained in other less artificial ways such as the lack of information or your characters’ levels. This is far more flexible. For example, imagine being able to sneak in to a high level area early on in a game with a character that is good at sneaking. You can’t sneak in to Baldur’s Gate city in Baldur’s Gate until it’s opened up in a later chapter due to story reasons.

            It’s basically scripting a game experience so that it follows a narrative versus giving the player goals and telling them to beat them in any way they can think of. Wasteland was sort of half and half in many respects, which is why it’s so well regarded. Same deal with Fallout. I just don’t want to see Wasteland 2 go the BioWare route, which, incidentally, is a route many of Obsidian’s and Black Isle’s later games went down. As much as I dislike the game for being an FPS, New Vegas actually did things the right way as it follows the Bethesda model that was conceived back in the early 90s when things were less crap.

          • LionsPhil says:

            And, indeed, going to areas in the “wrong” order is a time-honored Fallout speedrunning tactic, and if you get a bit lost or confused, generally wandering around the world map may well see you doing it by accident. It’s up to you to have the intuition to run away from the lumbering great brutes with miniguns if you don’t think your patches of cowhide and semiautomatic pistol will be a match.

            Which also makes it all the sweeter when you can go back there with power armour and plasma rifles.

          • Wizardry says:

            Right. But in Fallout, Wasteland, literally all the Might and Magic games and many other old-school RPGs there wasn’t a correct order as such. You tend to find a bunch of zones open at the beginning and perhaps one or two revealing themselves or opening themselves up near the end of the game, but out of the initial zones you’re free to pick and choose. Some zones may be harder than others, but by the time you’ve done one of many of the easier ones you’re usually strong enough to handle at least part of one of the ones sitting at the next level of difficulty, but at the same time you could be doing another one of the easy ones. In other words, the game just provides a world to you and lets you figure things out. You aren’t forced to go to A before B before C due to a progressing story.

            Lothering in Dragon Age: Origins is a typical example of modern game design. You can only go there after Ostagar and before the rest of the game world. It’s a one time quest hub because for story reasons you can’t go before or after your first and only visit. Compare this to the first Might and Magic game, for example, where you can literally get to any of the towns in the game and subsequently any of the towns’ dungeons and surrounding wilderness areas within minutes of the start of the game. You won’t win the game quickly though, despite having access to most of the game world from the very start.

    • Infinitron says:

      How about Icewind Dale or Storm of Zehir stuff?

      • Wizardry says:

        Those games were nothing like Wasteland, especially not Icewind Dale.

        • Infinitron says:

          But they weren’t “story heavy drivel” either.

          • Wizardry says:

            That’s actually arguable. Baldur’s Gate might seem more story heavy than Icewind Dale but which one locked you into a set of linear zones?

          • Infinitron says:

            Moving the goalposts, MMXI? ;)

          • Wizardry says:

            That’s the third time I’ve seen 2011 in Roman numerals brought up in response to my posts here. Am I missing some sort of in-joke?

    • Beelzebud says:

      Fallout 2 was a fully “hand written” game, and I’ve never met anyone that would describe it as inflexible. You just haven’t played a well designed RPG in so long you’ve forgotten how they were.

      • Wizardry says:

        Fallout 2 came out 14 years ago. What’s your point?

        • Beelzebud says:

          No, what exactly is your point? Torment came out 12 years ago.

          You’re the one claiming that an RPG can’t be good if it’s too heavily scripted, and yet some of the best RPGs of all time are heavily scripted. Running around in a sandbox doesn’t make a great RPG, which is why even after 14 years I’d rather play Fallout 2 again, than Fallout 3.

          • Wizardry says:

            I didn’t mention Fallout for a reason. Planescape: Torment is a very different game to Fallout. Go play Wasteland, go play the similar game Fallout, and then go play Knights of the Old Republic II or Planescape: Torment. You’ll notice a completely different type of design. I have no issue with Fallout 1 and 2 (other than not having full party control).

          • killias2 says:

            But those games you mention and like were -also- by the people employed at Black Isle. That’s why we’re bringing these games up.

          • Wizardry says:

            Tim Cain only recently joined Obsidian. I even pointed out my enthusiasm for him joining the project:

            Having said that, if Tim Cain’s on board then that would be good.

    • Premium User Badge

      drewski says:

      Some days I’m really, really happy that you hate modern games.

    • Bhazor says:

      I would argue with you but you’re just so… wrong. I don’t even know how to broach the subject. It’s like you’re arguing a fish is actually an airplane.

      Your opinion is just so wrong.

      • JackShandy says:

        It’d be nice to see someone make a legit critique of Wizardry’s ideas that stands up to scrutiny, instead of pages full of responses like this.

    • rawrty says:

      I agree…I was absolutely excited for this project when it was announced. As long as Fargo retains control and keeps it like the original that’s great.

      If Obsidian gets their scripting and whatever else involved and the final game plays like Planescape/kotor/etc, then I’d like my kickstarter funds back please.

      • DClark says:

        If Obsidian comes onboard they will do whatever Brian Fargo tells them to do – he will be their boss and he will be telling them what he wants.

        A lot of the criticisms laid at Obisidian’s feet should be equally or moreso laid at the feet of the specific game’s publisher rather than the developer (who developed the game based on the publisher’s requests, and as noted in that Brian Fargo interview at Ripten a few days ago it’s the publisher who is responsible for QA so if a game ships with bugs it’s because the publisher chose to ship it with bugs).

    • bladedsmoke says:

      as soon as you said that you disliked planescape torment for having interesting characters and a good story, you lost the right to have an opinion about anything. you must earn this right back through hard labour and sincere contrition.

  21. Icarus says:

    Mine countenance whereupon.

  22. Optimaximal says:

    So if the Kickstarter is 1% off its target, will Fargo *not* recruit Obsidian?

  23. Joe The Wizard says:

    I just got a boner. Is that weird?

    • Chmilz says:

      No, that is the perfectly acceptable response to this announcement. What’s weird is that I got a boner when I heard about your boner. Unless you’re into that.

  24. Cooper says:

    I hadn’t funded them. Now I have.

    InExile’s output is not really, well, encouraging. Obsidian onboard is more so.

  25. Tiax says:

    Reading this moved my pledge from 15 to 115 $

    • TailSwallower says:

      I salute you sir!

      I did what I could – upped my pledge from $15 to $30.

  26. Tuor says:

    The power of Christ compels us!

  27. Prokroustis says:

    That right there is the reason for everybody to up their pledge. Right now.

  28. Ironclad says:

    Your mind just exploded like a blood sausage

    Can I have another one?

  29. xGryfter says:

    How is this a good thing? All the talent at Obsidian left years ago, now they just make games with more bugs than game play… unless they piggy back on some one else’s game then there is just as much game play as there are bugs. I’m sorry but I’d like to actually be able to play Wasteland 2 when it comes out and not have to wait 6 months for a fan made patch to make it playable.

    I think I’ll go post this on the Kick starter page as well.

    • Meat Circus says:

      How is your mum a good thing?

      I think I’ll go post this on the Kick starter page as well.

    • Cerius says:

      You have no idea what you are talking about, right?

      What talent? The talent is still there. It has gotten bigger even.

      • xGryfter says:

        Have you people actually played any of their games?

        They are an idea studio, they have good ideas but lack the talent and or drive to successfully pull them off and their games are consistently some of the most buggy games of the AAA dev houses. Even more so than Bethesda and Obsidian’s games are a quarter of the size.

        Maybe they would do better with better management but until they can prove me wrong my opinion stands.

        • Volrath says:

          Kotor2 was better then Kotor
          NWN2 was better then NWN; hell Mask of the Betrayer was better then anything Bethesda and Bioware have done in over a decade
          Alpha Protocol: eh, not my style. Still had more C&C then all Mass Effect games combined
          New Vegas was leagues better then Fallout 3. Seriously, it makes Bethesda look like a bunch of amateur modders when it comes to writing, quest design and world exploration
          Dungeon Siege 3: never played it, but I heard it was a very solid and polished experience.

          I notice a trend here…

          Talent currently working at Obsidian: Avellone, Sawyer, Ziets, Tim fucking Cain!!!

        • killias2 says:

          Honestly, just Fallout NV proves you wrong. That game is one of the best RPGs released in years. Even RPG Codexers actually deign to speak positively about it. And, as far as I can tell, they hate every single RPG made after 1994, so that’s saying something.

    • Bremze says:

      You know how I said I’ll blame ignorance? Mind-eating worms is the only explanation for this post.

    • Jason Moyer says:

      Brian Mitsoda was all of their talent, apparently. And by all of it I mean “did he work on anything there besides an early version of AP that was never going to get finished if Chris hadn’t taken over”.

  30. Kucd says:

    Words, why do you fail me now?!

  31. Jenks says:

    Excellent, everything Obsidian touches turns to gold.

    …ugh, who am I kidding. Can I withdraw my Kickstarter pledge?

    • Havok9120 says:

      You could, but you’d risk eternal damnation.

      Your choice I suppose.

      • Jenks says:

        Does eternal damnation save me from playing crappy, unfinished sequels of fantastic games made by real developers? That sounds like a bargain.

  32. pligas says:

    Is this real life?

    It’s like my dream of Black Isle returning from the dead to smite the modern pseudo RPGs come true.

  33. MrStones says:

    It’s fun that we’re all in a way sorta-publishers now.

    I DEMAND that this game gets released yesterday and has moar style/tits/explosions/bugs than substance/plot/gameplay (that’s how you “publisher” right? still trying to get the hang of it)

    EDIT: Forgot always on internet and crippling DRM, I still have much to learn

    • Ironclad says:

      This game requires 500 [press “E” to continue]Quick time events; and awesome moments should be in cutscenes rather than done by the player. Especially chase scenes.

      Male Armour should be as bulky and muscle-enhancing as possible. Female Armour should be a thong and two coconuts on a string.

  34. FLYBOY611 says:

    This just got real serious real fast. I might consider upping donation…

  35. catmorbid says:

    Fuck me, if I wasn’t a piss poor student, I’d stuff my euros at their face like never before, right fucking now… I mean, I have to eat and get drunk, right? What’s left after that? Not much. So, there you go. I’ve already given my not much, but I do support this endeavour with all my heart! If I manage to get a job soon and get paid before the time runs out, I’ll promise to rise into the hundreds league though! It’s a promise! Srlsy! A pledge to teh whole interwebz. Srsly who the fuck am I talking to? O.o

  36. Pugiron says:

    Be affraid! The million bugs of the Obsidian empire are upon you! Our bugs will blot out the game!

  37. wodin says:

    To many cooks comes to mind. This is going from an Indie game with all of the delights that may hold to a AAA RPG game.

    Now lets watch the whole game change slowly but surely into something else with a dodgy 3D look and terrible camera controls etc etc.

    • Premium User Badge

      drewski says:

      An AAA RPG game costs $50m+, not $2.1m.

      This is going from an indie game to an indie game some of the guys from Obsidian are going to work a bit on.

  38. Premium User Badge

    DrScuttles says:

    Best news of the week for me; Obsidian have some great writers. Sure, they’ve received a fair share of criticism for Alpha Protocol and KOTOR 2, but I really enjoyed them both.
    AP was clunky, but the dialogue system was good and I felt like my choices actually affected the game. And that boss fight with Turn Up The Radio made me grin heartily. My major complaint would be that you practically had to use a gamepad to play the game.
    KOTOR 2, which I only played with the restored content mod, was great. In my opinion better than the original… but maybe too long. But that could just be how I play games.

    From what I understand, most of Obsidian’s problems are somewhat publisher-related (though perhaps they could organise themselves better? Not entirely sure how these things work).
    So yeah. I’m happy.

  39. 2late2die says:

    I’d go bump up my backing amount right now if it wasn’t already fairly substantial. I love Obsidian, bugs be damned. NWN2 was great, Kotor 2 was awesome, New Vegas is better than Fallout 3 and, despite what everyone says, I loved Alpha Protocol. So those guy are alright in my book.

  40. D3xter says:

    I’m going to have to hunger for a few months I see…

  41. Premium User Badge

    Lars Westergren says:

    Well, upped my W2 pledge to $500 + shipping.

    • Oof says:

      Considering doing this, too… Well, not upping. I hadn’t donated yet. But now… … … !

  42. Ghoulie says:

    LET’S MAKE IT HAPPEN.

    I was cautiously optimistic before (inExile hasn’t made anything too noteworthy for a while) but if they get Obsidian on board Wasteland 2 will officially become my most anticipated game.

  43. dehumanized says:

    (TNO voice)

    Updated my pledge.

  44. InternetBatman says:

    The two companies have a lot they can gain from each other. Obsidian gains some system designs, extra programming, bug-testing, a known franchise to work on, and probably some much needed funding while they secure a new project. Fargo gains access to a prebuilt engine with a small library of existing assets, a much better team of writers, a larger profile studio, and greater credibility to bank on

    I was feeling a little wary about my initial pledge just from how juvenile the Wasteland updates are because of sentiments like: it feels like the guys who picked on us in highschool are in charge now, and this makes me feel better. It’s a smart decision that might benefit inXile more than Obsidian, but will probably ensure a solid game and bolster both their reputations.

  45. bsones says:

    Ugh… I can’t stand Obsidian’s games, and would never have backed an Obsidian project. Sorry, Mr. Fargo, but: pledge canceled. :(

    • Yuri says:

      Now that’s just plain silly.

    • Volrath says:

      Do you hate good games by any chance?

    • Havok9120 says:

      That is…unfortunate. Illogical too. And I’m not even going to touch your dislike of all Obsidian games because I disagree so much.

      Did you also dislike the output of BlackIsle? Interplay? The current crew is more akin to them than to Obsidian, what with the people running the show not BEING Obsidian.

      • bsones says:

        I disliked a lot of the Black Isle stuff, yeah. Fallout was great, and Planescape Torment was good. The Icewind Dale games were bad. though, and Lionheart was awful. PST is really the only game that has a direct connection to the Obsidian crew, though, and I have disliked every game of theirs that I have played since they split off and formed Obsidian (KotOR 2 was mediocre, NWN2 was awful, Alpha Protocol was bad, Dungeon Siege III was bad, New Vegas was mediocre).

        As for being illogical: why would it be logical to pledge money to a developer that I don’t like? I already gave Obsidian a chance to show me how good a job they could do with a post-apocalyptic RPG by buying New Vegas. Which I didn’t like. After that, I decided that was was finally done buying Obsidian’s games. I’d be willing to reconsider if they put out something decent, but after a decade of trying, I’m not going to hold my breath. And I’m definitely not fronting them money *in advance*.

        • Havok9120 says:

          Because Obsidian isn’t running the show? That’s probably the biggest one. If new hires (which is effectively what this is) is enough to throw you, then you probably should never have supported it. Consulting and lending design tools is hardly them calling the shots and turning it into an Obsidian game.

          • RakeShark says:

            I’m certain there are many people who would react in the same way if, say, Orson Scott Card were to suddenly be brought on to help write Wasteland 2.

            And bsones did say this doesn’t mean he won’t buy the game should it be good, it just means he’s not pre-ordering/funding it.

        • Jerykk says:

          Wait, what? You loved Fallout but disliked New Vegas? Is that even legal? I thought that the only people who disliked NV were console gamers whose first Fallout was Fallout 3.

          Really, though, New Vegas is awesome. Best RPG since Fallout 2. Possibly even more open-ended than Fallout 2. Almost every quest had branching paths and the writing was great all around.

          • Wizardry says:

            Come off it. Plenty of people dislike New Vegas for valid reasons, such as being a first person shooter.

          • Premium User Badge

            Llewyn says:

            If you’re going to insist that NV is a FPS then I think you’re forfeiting any right to tell other people what isn’t an RPG. Or are you intentionally being a hypocrite?

          • Vinraith says:

            Of course NV is an FPS, it’s a first person game in which the vast bulk of your time is spent shooting things.

            It may also be an RPG ( a term so often redefined as to be functionally meaningless these days), but it’s undeniably an FPS.

          • LionsPhil says:

            New Vegas is an FPS. Player aiming skill is a huge, huge modifier on character damage output. If firing weapons cost action points—sorry, “VATS” points—regardless of if you let the computer aim for you or not, they could have fixed that. But they didn’t, because they wanted to make something that felt like an FPS.

            It’s an FPS with gubbins, and those gubbins are RPG-flavoured and quite extensive, but at its core the main meat of the gameplay is shooting stuff from a first-person perspective. (Or third, if you’re Wrong.)

          • Chris D says:

            The important thing to remember is that being an FPS in no way disqualifies it from being an RPG as well.

          • Premium User Badge

            Llewyn says:

            Most games that Wizardry dismisses as not being RPGs are ones in which most of your time is spent roleplaying. Apparently that’s not sufficient.

            I’d agree with you in general, Vinraith, that NV is a first-person shooting game (although I played a fair bit of it in third-person and use VATS heavily) but we’re dealing with a genre-fascist here. And by his measure of RPGs NV is assuredly not a FPS.

            @LionsPhil: I think you missed my original point. Most of us use genre definitions in a common sense way, in which case I’d agree with you. Wizardry does not where RPGs are concerned, and I don’t think he should be switching between an ultra-rigid definition of his preferred genre and a relaxed definition of others, especially when that is solely to dismiss a game that’s not to his tastes.

            And now I’ve written far more words about an irritating throwaway comment than I would have preferred to. Alas.

          • Vinraith says:

            Most games that Wizardry dismisses as not being RPGs are ones in which most of your time is spent roleplaying.

            Pray tell, what games are those? I’m not aware of any game in the history of the industry that fits that description.

          • Chris D says:

            @Vinraith

            Let’s go with Mass Effect, Skyrim, Dragon Age 2 and the Witcher for starters.

          • Vinraith says:

            @Chris D

            Why did you give me a list of games where the bulk of your time is spent in combat?

          • Chris D says:

            Vinraith

            If that’s what I was doing I could easily have added D&D to the list. But they’re also games where 100% of the time is spent playing a role, the proportion of combat doesn’t affect that.

          • Unaco says:

            @Vinraith,

            He didn’t. No where near 90% of your time is combat in any of those games (maybe DA2, I am not familiar with it).

          • Vinraith says:

            Oh, we’re going with the “watered down to meaninglessness” definition or role playing, eh?

            I enjoyed that great classic RPG, Super Mario Brothers, where I played the role of Mario.

            If we can’t even agree on terms we can’t really have a conversation, which is why every discussion about RPG’s spirals down into this particular hole.

          • Chris D says:

            I’m going with the loose defintion of taking on the role of a character and making decisions accordingly whether they’re in narrative or combat. I’d go on to add that to be an RPG the game system should support and facilitate this in some way, probably by providing a system to differentiate one character from another and with some element of character progression.

            What’s yours?

          • NathanH says:

            Not a worthwhile comment, removed.

          • JackShandy says:

            So now we’re back to “Wizardry thinks RPG’s are THIS crazy thing, when in fact they are (your personal definition here).”

            All someone has to do to escape from losing an argument around here is go “Well, the important thing to remember is that Wizardry is wrong about RPGs.” So Llewyn uses it in the middle of being told that New Vegas is definitely an FPS, and now everyone has to go on talking about that for half the comments section.

          • NathanH says:

            Haha, good point JS. Another important thing to remember is that Wizardry’s definition of RPGs and Action-RPGs is pretty good, successfully classifying almost everything you’d consider an RPG as one of the two, and almost everything you wouldn’t as not one. Wishy-washy alternative definitions people try don’t do as well, admitting very few games as RPGs or far too many games.

            It’s also worth remembering that choosing options in dialogue trees is quite far removed from roleplaying in the traditional P&P sense, and often works in completely the opposite way. (you could say that dialogue trees are the world forcing a response from you, whereas roleplaying is you forcing a response from the world. That’s a big vague but it seems like a good start.)

          • Chris D says:

            @NathanH

            Well, that’s the thing. Wizardry’s defintion excludes a whole lot of what I’d consider to be RPGs and games that have historically and popularly been called RPGs. It also entirely ignores the reason why many people play and enjoy RPGs. And so here we are.

          • NathanH says:

            I can’t think of a single game that could be considered an RPG that Wizardry’s classifier doesn’t classify as an RPG or action RPG. Can you provide an example?

          • Premium User Badge

            Llewyn says:

            @JackShandy: No, I didn’t.

            What I did say is that Wizardry takes a very purist approach to defining RPGs (I didn’t say anywhere whether I agree with him or not; in practice, I don’t greatly care whether something is defined as an RPG or not) while taking a far more relaxed approach to defining genres that he doesn’t care for. NV is not an FPS purist’s FPS any more than it’s an RPG purist’s RPG.

            Short version: I don’t care about genre classifications, I do care about inconsistency that borders on hypocrisy.

          • Chris D says:

            NathanH

            I don’t remember Wizardry’s actual definition offhand and do not wish to put words in his mouth, if you can remind me I can give a more specific response.

            Generally I’d refer back to the examples I already gave and also New Vegas. I’d also consider it more useful to think of action RPGs as a subgenre of RPGs as a whole rather than a separate entity. It’s also not so much the defintion I have a problem with, although I still disagree, and more the dismissive way it’s used.

          • NathanH says:

            Roughly speaking it goes as follows (my interpretation so mistakes may exist), an RPG is a game in which

            1) The player character is significantly defined by the player, usually through things like stats.
            2) The world responds to the player character according to these stats (or whatevers)
            3) Player skill operates only on a higher level to character skill. For example, player skill can involve selecting a strategy, character skill determines the outcome of this strategy.

            If you compromise on 3, allowing player skill to determine the outcome of the strategy, then you have an action RPG. You could instead call games satisfying 1 and 2 RPGs, with 3 determining whether it is an action-RPG or an old-school-RPG. I don’t think it makes a big differences, but I see the sense in doing it the way Wizardry does (why should action-RPGs be a subset of RPGs rather than a subset of action?)

          • Chris D says:

            @Nathan H

            Ok. I don’t particularly have a problem with any of that, though in that case I am surprised at the regularity at which Wizardry seems to declare something “Not an RPG” if this is the basis for it.

            I think perhaps the difference is that, as far as I can tell, Wizardry thinks an RPG should have this and nothing else whereas I would say that if a game contains the minimum requirements to be an RPG it can contain anything else it likes. Generally, if success at a game depends more on reflexes than on RPG decision making then it’s more useful to think of it as an action game but until that point it’s an RPG as far as I’m concerned. That’s really more of a guideline, though.

            I’m also perfectly happy to consider Action RPGs a subset of action games as well as RPGs. I don’t think game genres are discreet boxes, I’d see them as being more like a venn diagram.

          • NathanH says:

            Well, when you consider that Wizardry’s favourite genre or subgenre or whatever is busy dying and then you get people telling him how the stuff he likes is old fashioned and is just worse than the more modern ideas, you can understand why he regularly rides out to war.

          • Chris D says:

            I think thing has been that generally(but not always) Wizardry starts out in a thread about another game with something like “This sucks because it does not conform to my defintion of an RPG” (paraphrasing)which tends to get people’s backs up.

            If he started out by saying stuff like “I really like turn based RPGs”, “Turn based RPG’s are awesome because…” or “We need more turn based RPG’s” he’d find a whole lot more people willing to be allies. I would be one of them.

          • Wizardry says:

            Wow. This got out of hand quickly, and then sorted itself out thanks to some cool heads.

            The problem with saying “I like turn-based RPGs” is that I don’t just like turn-based RPGs because they have turn-based combat. I like turn-based RPGs because they fit closest to the standard pen and paper derived definition of what RPGs are. I like RPGs, and just because they happen to not be real-time action games shouldn’t require me to stuff a “turn-based” qualifier in front. At least that’s my reasoning.

            And on the topic of action RPGs being a sub-genre or a hybrid genre, just ask yourself what you think about action adventure games. Is Zelda in a sub-genre of games like Zork and Monkey Island? Do you really think that Zelda fits into a subgenre of a genre containing Space Quest? I don’t. They share many of the same elements (in this case progression based on problem solving and item acquisition) but one also has a dose of action game elements (whether hack and slash, platforming, first person shooter, whatever). Action RPGs are the same. If you strip out statistics from Gothic II, for example, or Skyrim, or Mass Effect, or Deus Ex, what are you left with? Suitable games that fit existing genres. Gothic II would be a sort of third person hack & slash game, Skyrim would be an open world Dark Messiah type of game, Mass Effect would be a Gears of War style cover shooter and Deus Ex would be a standard FPS. Take the stats out of any of the classic RPGs like Pool of Radiance and Wizardry and you’re left with these turn-based combat game things that could only be described as simplified small scale wargames, which is exactly the genre RPGs came from in the first place.

  46. Yuri says:

    I was immediately beset by an epic case of goosebumps as soon as i read this news post.
    Not so much because of the game itself, but by the sheer effect Kickstarter has on independent projects such as this one.

    More please. Kickstarter is LOVE!

  47. Dominic White says:

    To any and all of the folks going ‘UGH, OBSIDIAN!’, this is why you should be hoping they get on board with Wasteland 2:

    http://i.imgur.com/mAENC.jpg

    This is an incomplete (seriously, there’s a few options it doesn’t show) quest completion flowchart for a single side-quest in Fallout: New Vegas. Just look at how many ways you can complete that one sidequest, and how options open up depending on character, rather than just dialogue choice.

    That kind of writing/design is exactly what Wasteland 2 needs. And don’t say that Obsidian make buggy games – they get fucked over by publishers who won’t let them do proper QA. The last game they made – Dungeon Siege 3 – was *super* polished, and is evidence of what happens when they’re actually given the time and budget they need to make something.

    • Volrath says:

      :brofist:

      I haven’t been this excited in years. I’m already imagining Sawyer and Cain discussing gameplay mechanics with the people at InXile, Sawyer and Ziets writing dialogue for quests…

      This is like 1999 all over again.

      • LionsPhil says:

        Awesome; that means the good version of Unreal Tournament is getting released this year.

        • InternetBatman says:

          I was just thinking that! Although 2004 was pretty damn solid. Needed a ripper though.

    • D3xter says:

      I think this one is more to the point and self-explanatory.
      http://www.abload.de/img/rpgseckqr.jpg

    • JackShandy says:

      I remember that quest. I drugged their food, then everyone in the hotel turned hostile and I had to punch my way out after running out of ammo. Ted Gunderson didn’t survive.

  48. pakoito says:

    Well I don’t want this tbh. I want a 2D game on a 3D engine and handpainted prerenders. If Obsidian comes along it will be crappy 3D that will only run on big laptops or desktops.

    • Jason Moyer says:

      I thought it was going to be a third-person Gears of War reinterpretation of Hexen.

      • rawrty says:

        I was hoping for more of an Assassin’s Creed-like gameplay but with less action and more story.

        • KillahMate says:

          No way man, they’re doing it street style! Literally. I mean they’re licensing the FIFA Street engine from EA.

  49. tentacle says:

    I’d like to also point out to people that Wasteland 2 is going to be an old-school top-down RPG created in an indie “when its done” style, instead of under the thumb of publisher deadlines and demands.
    The latter being the primary reason for most of the bugginess or suckage you may have seen in recent obsidian (and other) games. Everything is very different when the guys are a smaller team, doing it probably for less then their usual pay, as a labor of love.

  50. Havok9120 says:

    Fargo, Stackpole, Pavlis, Anderson, St. Andre, Morgan, and now Avellone & Cain.

    Mark me a happy man.