Shadowrun's been away since time immemorial. It hasn't had a videogame in ages - well, except 2007's bizarrely out-of-character multiplayer shooter revival, but we don't talk about that. As a result, however, The Rules dictate that Shadowrun's next digital dalliance constitutes a return, and so it is with Shadowrun Returns. The technomagical role-player looks positively fantastic, so we at RPS are awaiting it with baited breath. That's right: we're actively making our mouths smell more appealing so as to lure it into grasping/maybe-licking range. And clearly, it's worked, because Harebrained just announced that it'll be out next month - and fully editable on day one, to boot.
It's coming to Steam on July 25th, and - slightly problematic nature of that fact aside - this is exciting news! Plus, it's shipping with a seriously powerful editor, and Harebrained is opening up the entire campaign to all aspiring tinkerers from the get-go.
"Beyond its successful community funding, Harebrained Schemes is encouraging its community to share by releasing the game's game editor, a robust set of tools for anyone to use to create their own stories in Shadowrun’s rich and vibrant shared universe. While other games offer editing tools, Harebrained Schemes is going one step further by releasing the entire Shadowrun Returns campaign in the editor format."
Welp, time to rewrite the script to be entirely about RPS, then. Or maybe some kind of heavy handed sociopolitical commentary. I've always found that Orks and Street Samurais are the best means of communicating weighty topics in a straightforward, relevant fashion. Third alternative: cyberfuturistic Buffy The Vampire Slayer fan fiction. Discuss.
Anyway, this is - to my knowledge - the first multi-million dollar Kickstarter game to actually launch, which is a pretty big deal on a number of levels. Will it be good? Can it be good enough? Can it possibly live up to all of backers' expectations? Should it? Will people who weren't backers even care enough to buy it? Does it even matter if they do at this point?
The questions, they are numerous - like plague-ravaged Devil Rats slinking between grime-encrusted sewer grates. There's quite a bit of weight on Shadowrun's shoulders, though I'm hesitant to take any conclusions it comes to as definitive. In the end, it's just one game. As for what comes after, well, we'll see when we get there.