Posts Tagged ‘Harebrained Schemes’

Shadowrun Devs Delay Co-op Roguelikelike Necropolis

Shadowrun Returns gang Harebrained Schemes will not, as previously announced, release their stylish roguelikelike Necropolis [official site] in March. No, if you want to go hacking through dungeons with your chums, you’ll need to wait until summer. In short, Harebrained have landed a publisher to release Necropolis on consoles too and say they needed to launch straight into working on that, so the PC version wouldn’t get the attention it deserves if they stuck to March. Sure, I’ll happily wait for this one.

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Shadowrun: Hong Kong Now Running Bonus Campaign

Shoot shoot, bang bang.

Hey, you! Yes, you in the plastic trenchcoat and plastic elf ears. You liked Shadowrun: Hong Kong [official site], right? Call it a hunch. Good news to you (and folks whose fondness for cyberpunk fantasy is perhaps more private): the RPG’s Extended Edition is now out as a free update. Along with a good hour-and-a-half of director’s commentary, the Extended Edition adds the new bonus mini-campaign which was a Kickstarter stretch goal. And hey, if you’re short on Nuyen, the game’s on sale right now too.

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Shadowrun: Hong Kong – Extended Edition Coming Soon

You can hang up your cool leather jacket and grow out your sloppy neon haircut, oh I know, but part of you will always want to yell “HACK THE PLANET!” and stick it to the megacorps. Harebrained Schemes just can’t stop slipping back out into the grimy streets of our cyberpunk future. They revisted Shadowrun: Dragonfall with a Director’s Cut, and now they’re returning to Shadowrun: Hong Kong to expand it a bit with hours more stuff to do. What they’re working on is a bit vague for now, but the important bit is that it’ll be free.

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Shadowrun Devs’ Roguelike Necropolis Out In March

Harebrained Schemes don’t only create remakes of olden meatspace games, you know. They only do that when they want to raise millions of dollars on Kickstarter. In between last year’s Shadowrun: Hong Kong and next year’s Battletech do-over, they’re realising a ‘procedural death labyrinth’ (a roguelike, then) called Necropolis [official site], to which they’ve just announced the addition of four-player co-op. The thing’s also due out in March, and some of you may be relieved to hear that it’s skipping the whole early access thing.

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How BattleTech Hopes To Do Giant Mechs Justice

There is no shortage of classic MechWarrior games for PC. MechWarrior 2 was one of the defining 3D action games of the 90s, and MechCommander remains a beloved tactical game among the people who remember it. But you could argue that there’s never been a real BattleTech game, one that faithfully recreated both the tabletop tactical games and the kind of warfare portrayed in in the sourcebooks. The PC games set in the MechWarrior universe all had to make drastic departures.

Now, over thirty years after he created BattleTech, Jordan Weisman is finally getting around to making a PC wargame that does it justice. After successfully reviving the Shadowrun franchise on PC, his company has brought BattleTech to Kickstarter. It’s a descended from the boardgame in ways that the other PC MechWarrior games never could be. I spoke to Weisman about why things would be different this time.

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Shadowrun Returns Devs Bring Back BattleTech, Is Successfully Kickstarted Almost Immediately

Edit: now at over $800k after less than a day. Lawks!

BattleTech is/was the setting for the beloved MechWarrior series, but began life as a 1984 tabletop wargame, long before it was a mech combat sim. Though MechWarrior pops up again now and then (usually involving some tortured development process), the BattleTech name itself didn’t get a whole lot of use when it came to videogames – although Command & Conquer creators Westwood had a go at one. But now it’s getting its first non-spun-off time in the PC gaming sun since 1994, as a new turn-based mech tactics game being developed by Harebrained Schemes, of Shadowrun Returns fame.

BattleTech reached its $250,000 Kickstarter goal within around an hour of announcement. Blimey. However, the game won’t have a singleplayer campaign unless it reaches one million dollars. Wait, what?
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Wot I Think – Shadowrun: Hong Kong

Shadowrun: Hong Kong [official site] is the third-and-a-half time around the block for this cyberpunk-but-with-elves roleplaying series, and by now there’s a routine and a rhythm. You build a Shadowrunner, a secretive mercenary who can fight with technical or mystical powers (or a combination of the two), leading a team of fixed-spec allies with big personalities through real-time exploration and turn-based action. This time, the setting is one of the touchstones of 80s cyberpunk, and we’re dealing with Triads, social segregation and city-wide nightmares in addition to the usual gang war, troll mercenaries and magic-assisted corporate espionage.

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BattleTech Returns: Shadowrun Studio Preparing Mech Combat Kickstarter

Shadowrun has enjoyed a triumphant return and after the superb Dragonfall, I’m as excited about the the upcoming trip to Hong Kong as I am about almost any other game coming up in the second half of the year. Harebrained Schemes love a good return though and now they’re preparing to help another series step back into the limelight.

BattleTech is back. Or at least it will be if an upcoming Kickstarter is successful. Details below.

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Travel to Hong Kong With First Shadowrun Screens

Now that some Shadowrun: Hong Kong [official site] screenshots have finally been released, we’re allowed a first glimpse at what life for our Runners will be like in the Far East. In short, pretty similar to what we’ve encountered so far in Seattle and Berlin, but with a more Eastern twang. Shanty street markets, dimly lit docks and rooftop hideaways all scream Shadowrun. As does the now familiar art style, which looks like Harebrained Schemes have taken an ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ approach. And rightly so.

There’s a teaser trailer too, but it shows absolutely nothing and gives us no clearer indication of when we’ll get our hands on the game beyond “summer 2015”.

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Death Is Beautiful: Shadowrun Devs’ Necropolis Looks Ace

Certain games, you know the ones, give you that straight up “YES. THAT. PLEASE.” reaction. Something about the aesthetic, the animation, the developer – something makes you disregard any possibility other than finding a way to get it onto your hard drive as soon as possible. For an example, please see above.

Necropolis [official site], first revealed late last year as the next game from Shadowrun Returns devs Harebrained Schemes, is a semi-procedurally generated Zelda-like with big, brutal combat. It’s stunningly pretty (or “in vogue” as Alec called it, smartypants) and promises a darkly humourous tone. Until this very moment there hasn’t been any footage. Until now.

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Harebrained Schemes On The Future Of Shadowrun

Last week I ran the first half of an interview with three-time Kickstarter winners Harebrained Schemes, in which they fielded my own questions about their upcoming cyberpunk-with-magic RPG sequel Shadowrun: Hong Kong. This time, they’re fielding your questions – including what they’ve got planned for the future of the series, cyberpunk’s Asian influences, how the stories are becoming increasingly less linear, avoiding Eastern stereotypes with the new setting, and improving the game’s pace.

Oh, and at the time writing the Shadowrun Hong Kong Kickstarter has now brought in $750,000. They’d asked for $100,000. They’ve now unlocked 12 stretch goals, and promise an additional mini-campaign if they hit $1 million. There are still 19 days to go. *blinks*.
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Shadowrun Devs On Hong Kong, Kickstarter, Fans & Story

Shadowrun just keeps on returning. The cyberpunk RPG has has various game adaptations over the last few decades, but it was the Kickstarted Shadowrun Returns which most nailed the concept. Narrative and choice expanded in excellent follow-up campaign Dragonfall, which then saw a further improved Director’s Cut, and after all that devs Harebrained Schemes had a loyal enough fanbase to pull off their third successful Kickstarter, even in an age where there’s a lot of worried muttering about the future of crowd-funding for games. No such worries for Harebrained co-founders Jordan Weisman and Mitch Gitelman, whose upcoming Shadowrun: Hong Kong was funded in less than two hours and now has over $600k pledged – six times what they’d asked for. Blimey.

Earlier this week, I talked to the pair about why they went back to the Kickstarter well, what they’re doing differently this time, how they’ve been able to make story an increased focus, what the community’s up to with the Shadowrun editor and being sent free pizza.
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That Was Quick: Shadowrun Definitely Returns Again

They say lightning doesn’t strike twice. But they weren’t talking about one studio being able to pull off multiple successful Kickstarters when they said that, so it’s irrelevant. What is relevant is that Harebrained Schemes join the likes of Double Fine and inXile in getting a second [edit – third, in fact: they also had Golem Arcana, which I think makes them the crowdfunding leader?] game crowd-funded into existence. There’s lots of anxiety flying around about the Kickstarter era of videogame development winding down, but Shadowrun: Hong Kong flew in the face of doomsaying by getting itself funded within hours of the campaign launching.
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Reprise Of The Triads: Shadowrun – Hong Kong

Shadowrun is returning. Again! I’ve already covered the basics of Shadowrun: Hong Kong, Harebrained Schemes’ next step into the world of fantastical cyberpunk, but the Kickstarter has just gone live so there are plenty of details to wrap that bundle of wires you call a brain around. The video below contains the first glimpse of the game’s isometric interpretation of the setting, unless you count the concept art above, in which case it’s your second glimpse. After the great success of Dragonfall, I’m eager to take another trip into this particular vision of our electronic future.

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Shadowrun Returns Heads To Hong Kong, Via Kickstarter

Shadowrun Returns is returning to Kickstarter. Later this month, developers Hare-Brained Schemes will launch a crowdfunding campaign to raise dosh for their proposed Hong Kong setting. The artwork above is the only detail released so far. but the inclusion of neon lighting, streetfood, rain and a brolly is enough to convince me that this is Legit Cyberpunk. My interest in Shadowrun has peaked, following a Turkeymas break spent in the company of the excellent Dragonfall expansion, which is an absolutely smashing RPG campaign, packed with interesting characters, choices and missions. More of that, please.

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Shadowrun Return Devs Return With Necropolis

Monument Death Valley

‘Necropolis’ is a word which is surprisingly meaningful to me. This is because I was raised in the city of dead, sent out into the wretched world of the living to spread decay and despair. And also because Necropolis was the first-ever Judge Dredd story I read (in fact I came in halfway through) and my tiny mind was blown by the discovery that comics could be so bleak and sinister and amoral and, well, grown-up. The X-Men, my staple diet until then, suddenly looked like clowns.

…Must resist the urge to just bang on about Judge Dredd for three thousand words. Today I was startled to see the word ‘Necropolis’ pop up in a brand new context, that being a “brutal” dungeoneering game from the makers of Shadowrun Returns.
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Shadowrun: Dragonfall Now Has Standalone Director’s Cut

Shadowrun Returns returns! Or rather, its expansion Shadowrun: Dragonfall is returning, this time as a standalone release called Shadowrun: Dragonfall Director’s Cut. To justify the title, the cyberpunk RPG expandalone is being expanded further with five new missions, a re-designed interface, new endings, new music, and a bunch more. There’s a trailer below which details the biggest of the changes, and it seems there’s good news for both new players and old.

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Wot I Think – Shadowrun Returns: Dragonfall

Now that’s more like it. Choice! Side-missions! A hub! A strong supporting cast who are up for a bit of a chat! Little-to-no mandatory decking sequences! A mother-lovin’ save (almost) anywhere system! Shadowrun Returns: Dragonfall being ‘just’ DLC for last year’s cyberpunk/fantasy mash-up RPG is bittersweet, because it may well be that only existing Shadowrun Returns owners give it a spin. Really, though, this is the point where new players are best off getting involved – a new, superior campaign with no ties to the last one, and quite a few of the major problems dealt with. Now’s the time to play Shadowrun Returns, basically, but please, start with this.
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Shadowrun Returns Not Quite Returning Just Yet

Much as I thought last year’s opening salvo pulled a few too many punches and didn’t offer anything like enough freedom of choice/movement, I could really go for some Shadowrun about now. Offbeat world, reasonably strategic battles, option to be a bit of dick to everyone… Take me, cyberpunk/fantasy roleplaying mashup, I’m yours. Sadly plans for first official expansion Dragonfall to launch this month have been nixed, though a more concrete release date of February 27th has been pinned to it. I’ll probably have changed my mind about wanting to play it by then. I’ll probably want to play something with horses or chefs or chefs on horses in instead.

Anyway: trailer, features, exaggerated descriptions below.
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