Posts Tagged ‘Obsidian Entertainment’

Wot I Think: Pillars Of Eternity – The White March Part 1

It’s been nearly half a year since we devoured Pillars Of Eternity. Now Obsidian are back with another great big chunk, in the form of the first half of The White March [official site]. Does the expansion give good reason to return to the Dyrwood? Here’s wot I think.

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Striding Forth – Pillars Of Eternity: The White March Out

It’s been five months since Pillars of Eternity [official site] was released, which is categorical proof that the wheel of time has spun completely off its axis and is careering down a hill toward a cliff edge. Before we’re all plunged into the abyss, there’s another big chunk of RPG from Obsidian to delve into, in The White March Part 1, a snowy expansion for the main game.

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The RPG Scrollbars: A Dip Into… Skyforge

It takes quite a lot to get me to download a new MMO these days. When I hear good rumblings though, I listen, and so yesterday I decided to check out the Skyforge Open Beta. [official site]. This is not a review, so it’s not intended as a sweeping look at all systems. Think of it as dipping a toe into the water – did it catch my attention, and was it at least worth the whopping client download?

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Open Skies: Skyforge Enters Open Beta

Ah yes, I’ve just checked and it is a day ending in y, meaning a free to play MMO has entered open beta. This go round on the roulette wheel is Skyforge’s [official site], made chiefly by the lot behind Russian MMO Allods Online, Allods Team (formerly Astrum Nival). Obsidian, of Pillars of Eternity among various others, are oddly also involved (hey, we all have bills to pay).

Skyforge is set on the world of Aelion and you play gods attempting to protect it from alien invasion. It’s full on hammy sci-fi fantasy, but looks just eye-catching and interesting enough in class design and art direction to dispel some of my cynicism. Come see details on the beta and the latest trailer:

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Giveaway Co-Developed By Obsidian

Win One Of 750 Beta Keys For MMO Skyforge

Skyforge [official site] is an in-development free-to-play MMO, the core hook of which is the ability to change your class at any moment without having to re-level your skills from scratch. It’s being developed by My.com (thems what made Allods Online) in partnership with Obsidian (thems what did Pillars of Eternity and lots of other games). If you’re interested in hopping into the game’s open beta early, step below for the chance.

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Pillars Of Eternity 2.0: Better AI, Less Rubbish Stealth

The main reason I stopped playing Pillars of Eternity is because I’d need a month-long holiday to make meaningful progress through it, but though I liked it, a host of minor annoyances played their part too. Retro-for-retro’s sake UI, a conscious aversion to brevity which I felt sometimes undermined rather than supported its world-building, overly micro-managey combat, and most of all, janky stealth. I always play a rogue if I can, mostly because I’m a kleptomaniac in RPGs, but in Pillars stealthing one person involved stealthing the whole party, whether or not they were any good at stealth. It looked silly, it got fiddly, it wasn’t very effective in combat and it felt wrong.

Fortunately, stealth is one of several areas of Obsidian’s RPG which is due for an overhaul in the upcoming 2.0 patch, which adds some of the White March expansion pack‘s features to the core game.

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The White March Is Pillars Of Eternity’s First Expansion

Pillars Of Eternity [official site] looks set to live up to its name with even more playable hours being added to the game in the near future. An expansion, titled The White March: Part 1 is “coming soon” according to its announcement trailer, was revealed last night. Set after the events of the first game, it not only begins a new storyline but also includes new companions to recruit.

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Go It Alone: Chris Avellone Has Left Obsidian

RPG maestro and human stretch goal Chris Avellone probably isn’t planning to go solo but earlier today he confirmed that he’ll be leaving Obsidian. The studio’s most recent title was the superb Pillars of Eternity, on which Avellone worked as a narrative designer, but both he and Obsidian, the company that he co-founded, have a proud back catalogue. Obsidian is still home to some of the finest minds in the RPG business, not least Eternity lead Josh Sawyer, so my main interest here is not what happens to the studio he’s leaving but what Avellone does next.

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Further Thoughts On Pillars Of Eternity: Animancy & Faith

Now that people have had a weekend to spend with Pillars Of Eternity, it feels a bit more appropriate to offer thoughts on parts of the game that would otherwise have been spoiling revelations or moments within the opening few hours. Not core plot events, or twists that may occur, but just the basics – basics I wanted to leave out of my review because it felt like stealing. Stealing the blank slate experience I had from you, in my effort to describe the game.

So here are a first couple of extended chunks I would have liked to have included when expressing and explaining my enthusiasm. Assume big spoilers for themes of the game.

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Wot I Think: Pillars Of Eternity

Oh thank goodness. After 77,000 backers, $4 million raised and nearly three years in development, Obsidian’s Pillars Of Eternity [official site] is here, and it’s just stunning.

This is the RPG I’ve been craving since Planescape: Torment, the first to win my absolute love since Dragon Age: Origin. It’s a vast, deep and wonderfully written game, malleable to how you want to approach the genre, replete with companions, side-quests, an enormously involved combat system, and lasts a solid 60 hours. Here’s wot I think:

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Pillars Of Eternity: The First Half Hour

I have spent most of the last week doing little else but play Obsidian’s Pillars Of Eternity [official site]. But I cannot yet tell you wot I think, as such brainthoughtss are under embargo. I can, however, stream or “let’s play” the first fifteen hours of the game. But I’m not going to do that, because it would be the most awful shame for you to have such things spoiled.

Instead I’ve videoed and chatted over the first half hour, from the character creator to the opening scenes, stopping right before the plot kicks in. Because you don’t want to know the story before you play an RPG, because you’re not a complete clot.

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Adventure-o! Watch An Hour Of Pillars Of Eternity

'venture!

What are adventurers’ bags and coats made of? I ask because watching an hour of Obsidian’s Pillars of Eternity (which now has a release date: March 26th), I notice an awful lot of tongues being ripped out of dead monsters’ mouths and wings ripped from backs then stuffed into pockets, pouches, packs, and purses. I’d give a wide berth to anyone dripping with, and reeking of, old blood and flesh. You’ll see a whole lot more of isometric RPG adventuring in that hour, sure, but I can’t stop thinking about reaching into my pocket for my wallet and pulling out an old tongue.

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Not So Long: Pillars Of Eternity Release Date Is March 26th

The beta of Pillars of Eternity has been available to backers of its hyper-successful Kickstarter projcet since August last year, but now the frugal wait-and-sees (like me) know when the game will be finished: March 26th. There’ll also be a livestream from project director Josh Sawyer tomorrow at 9pm GMT/1pm PST to show some of the recently added and revised content.

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