Unborn To Shadowrun

File under What Could Have Been. Robert Olson was Art Director at FASA, and after Crimson Skies started work on… well, Shadowrun. As fond as I am (i.e. Slightly) of the eventual Shadowrun multiplayer FPS, the game which was cancelled before it. The original plan? “They wanted a new Shadowrun, one that was real in the way Peter Jackson made the “Lord of the Rings” universe real. They wanted an IP that would satisfy the hard core Shadowrun fans but appeal to a new and younger audience,” explains Olson. There’s a few more thoughts on what was presumably called Shadowrun: Awakening – because that’s what the URL says – over at the page, plus shots from an early demo. No ‘elf packs are visible.


  1. Inigo says:

    It looks like the HL2 mod Neotokyo. Minus the constant BSODs.
    …Or was that just me?

  2. Hug_dealer says:

    man, i would give any non vital organs away for a legit shadow run rpg.

    i had a blast on the old sega/snes shadowrun. Wasnt quite TT, but it was also a blast.

  3. Nick says:

    I want to live in the alternate universe in which this was made and not the stupid waste of an IP MPFPS.

  4. Plyskeen says:

    @ Hug: Me too! :(
    I recall that a fan group of funs started a proof-of-concept Shadowrun online, just to request a MMORPG from Microsoft… only to be shut down by a cease and dessist.. :/

  5. Diogo Ribeiro says:

    I’m going to pull off a Cloud.


    With that out of the way, the thing I enjoyed the best in the SR FPS were the powers. The abilities, the synergy, all felt meaty and in place. The price was overwhelming and the content was subpar, though. I’ve longed for a “proper” SR game. I’ve had it as close as possible, of course – the Sega Genesis version is such a slap in the face of those who think consoles are ill designed for this kind of games, and that they managed to do a great job on a 16-bit machine is further testimony of that. Of course, it wasn’t without pitfalls and some areas that needed some focus.

    But then, probabilities that this ever gets a “proper” conversion, a proper vision and gameplay on PC are close to none. One can always dream, though.

  6. Jacques says:

    It’s a real shame FASA never got to make a really good Mechcommander sequel.

    • Heliocentric says:

      Was that a jab at mechcommander 2? Because i loved that game.

    • Jacques says:

      A little bit of one, probably because I played the original Mechcommander when I was 10, so I’ve got some rose tinted goggles, but man, that game was HARD, the second game just seemed too easy.

      I can’t recall any missions in #2 that were as good as some of those in the original, missions like the one where you started out with an APC, deep in enemy territory, having to find a Masakari mech, and then using that one mech to take out an enemy base. Or how about the mission at the oil refinery, where just one stray shot could ruin everything. It must have taken me over a week to get past Operation 1 Mission 2, and I can’t recall how many times I played through Op1 Mi3 to salvage that Mad Cat, at the expense of some of my other mechs.

  7. Brant says:

    I thought the Shadowrun FPS was a great multiplayer shooter. Many of the reasons it did poorly were completely unrelated to the quality of the game itself, which is a damn shame. (Examples: The console version launched next to the Halo 3 multiplayer beta. The price was $20 higher than what it should have been for a multiplayer-only shooter. The PC version was locked to Vista during a time period when few gamers had upgraded, even though the engine didn’t use any DX10 features.)

    I completely understand how a lot of Shadowrun fans were angry over the (mis-)use of the license, but the game underlying the 3D elves and trolls was solid.

  8. Gott says:

    A fully featured Shadowrun Team based RPG could be incredible.

    It would however, be practically very difficult. The number of game mechanics involved would make Blood Bowl look simple and intuitive to pick up, while the vagaries of team make up and over/underspecialisation potentially rears its head in a modern social engineering and stealth based crime game, while SR vets would less than overjoyed with a straight slash ’em up.

    It’s a complex game that even on tabletop causes issues with conceptual, rather mechanical issues. The game could be great, but gamer’s may not like it.

  9. Harlander says:

    I always thought a vaguely Neverwinter Nights-esque approach would work. Not the single-player, but the multiplayer ‘modules’. With a good GM, those were closest I’ve come to the openness of tabletop in a PC game, and to really shine Shadowrun needs the same kind of openness. I can’t think of a good way to make it work with the ‘traditional’ MMO style. You need to be in a group all the time…

  10. mootpoint says:

    Oh, a real Shadowrun RPG would have been superb, but as nice as those screenshots were (and the thought of what could have been) I'm almost more enticed by this little tidbit under "Current":

    I am currently employed as an Art Director at Mad Doc Software working on a next generation squad based tactical shooter using Unreal Engine 3. The details of the title have not yet been announced so I can't say much more than that. Just in case you didn't know, Unreal Engine 3 is absolutely amazing.

    Mad Doc Software is now Rockstar New England. Rockstar working on a squad based tactical shooter? Tasty!?

  11. LaundroMat says:

    Sometimes, when reading about APB (Sony’s MMO), it makes me reminisce about ShadowRun. Add some cybernetics and magic, and you’re close to the kind of ShadowRun campaigns we used to play back in the days.

  12. GGX_Justice says:

    As a huge fan of Shadowrun and the Sixth World in general, it’s always been disappointing knowing we haven’t had a decent video-game translation.

    Although to be fair, as other RPS’ers have pointed out, it could be very difficult to hit the sweet spot.

  13. bill says:

    While a Shadowrun RPG would be awesome, I’ve always had a secret wish for a Rainbow-6 style shadowrun game.

    Not the current R6 of course, the old style on. Mix in a bit of Mechwarrior: Mercenaries and a little System Shock and it’d rock. Choose your missions from fixers. Hire your runners. Equip them with weapons, gadgets, cyber-upgrades, etc. Have your runner hack in and look at the building layout and through the security cameras. Plan your mission on the computer map. Send in your team.

    They could keep the realism of R6, but things like subdermal armor would make it a bit less sudden-death. Upgradeable weapons and team members would make it more varied, and the money aspect would make choosing your team and equiping them a challenge.

    Just my little dream….

    • Count Zero says:

      That sounds really good. It’s neat to see I’m not the only one who liked the planning phase of the original Rainbow Six. I think I spent more time planning the missions and setting way points than I did actually playing it, and I would love that same experience again.

  14. Chaz says:

    For saying those screen shots are nearly 5 years old, they don’t look half bad.