Posts Tagged ‘Star Wars: Knights of The Old Republic’

The RPG Scrollbars: The Fall Of Tyranny

Kickstarter’s been pretty good for RPGs. We may not have seen the next big leap yet – Divinity: Original Sin 2 is looking pretty damn special, mind – but it’s certainly breathed new life into the classics. Wasteland and Pillars of Eternity are both returning. Numenera went down well, despite a little over-promising. Divinity was superb.

Have I left anyone out? (Oh yeah, don’t forget Taz.)

Oh. Yes. Tyranny. If you thought that game kinda landed and faded quickly, you’re not alone. Despite being a very solid half of a game, even Obsidian/Paradox have admitted that when it came to it, “everyone was hoping that it would do better.” I think it deserved to. The thing is, I’m not sure this should have been a huge surprise.

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A New Hope? Unreal-Powered KOTOR Fan Remake

Feels like it’s far too soon to be remaking Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic but a) they’ve rebooted the Spider-Man movies 48 times in 18 months and b) KOTOR is, in fact, 13 years old oh god I’m so ancient how did this happen help help. So maybe the time isn’t too un-wrong for someone to take a crack at making one of the most beloved 3D-accelerated Star Wars games look a whole lot more modern. Waitaminnit: isn’t this just like George Lucas and his bloody Special Editions? SHUT IT DOWN SHUT IT DOWN SHUT IT DOWN.

The fans making Apeiron carefully classify it as a mod rather than a standalone project, in the hope that Ian Disney won’t force-choke it to death. It’s a remake of KOTOR in the Unreal 4 engine, and while it’s a million parsecs away from completion, or even from showing how it will function as a game (including an apparent move from third- to first-person blasting), we do get a look at some extremely pretty and really quite Star Warsy environments.

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Goodbye-O-Ware: Writer David Gaider Leaves BioWare

After seventeen years in the scribbler’s hotseat, writer and designer David Gaider has left BioWare. Gaider joined the RPG-builders back in 1999, putting in some time on Baldur’s Gate 2 before moving onto Knights of the Old Republic. His contributions to the Star Wars universe include snarky murderous human-hating droid HK-47 (a terrifying vision of our machine-doomed future presented as comic relief) and Carth Onasi, a sad space-man. Gaider’s greatest contribution to CRPGs came as lead writer on Dragon Age: Origins, the beginning of the series that, along with Mass Effect, has come to define modern BioWare.

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The 10 Best Games Based On Movies

trololololol

I had twin criteria for this. The first was ‘is it a decent game?’ and the second ‘does it meaningfully evoke the spirit, themes or characters of the movie in addition to having Quite Good Guns And Graphics?’ The second saw quite a few games which would otherwise qualify ruled out. This year’s Mad Max, for instance, was an agreeable murder-romp but it’s much harder to argue that it nails the desperation or oddness of the films it’s based on. Star Wars: Battlefront, meanwhile, is an OK online shooter with marvellous graphics, but it’s too mechanical to ‘feel’ like Star Wars once you get beyond the spectacular presentation. Ah, ‘feel’. That’s the thing, isn’t it? Does a movie game make you feel like you’re a part of that movie’s wider world, or is it just wearing its skin?

It’s that question which most informed this list. I don’t disagree that there are, in some cases, better games-based-on-movies if ‘game’ is the foremost criteria, but these, in no particular order, are the ten games which most understood and even grew my appreciation for their subject matter, rather than simply piggy-backed it. (Additional FYI: I decided not to include any superhero games, reasoning they’re really their own thing rather than innately movie-based).

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The RPG Scrollbars: Pants On Parade

Since the dawn of RPGs, two things have remained constant: heroes require armour, and players will always want to find out what happens if they strip it all off and run around. Some would call it a secret test of a game’s devotion to world simulation – that if characters react, it says good things about the developers’ devotion to detail. Others just think it’s really funny. (To be clear, it’s very rarely even close to sexy.)

This week then, a random sample will answer the question the world has been waiting to realise it should have asked – objectively speaking, which RPG is the best? Specifically, if they all forgot their PE kits and had to go quest in their pants.

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Sithprise! Knights Of The Old Republic 2’s New Patch

You meatbags did what?

Obsidian’s Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II doesn’t quite reach the level of Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines on the Oh Gosh Imagine If It Were Actually Finished-o-meter, but it has folks who go to bat to it. Like Bloodlines, for a decade KOTOR 2 has relied on fans to fix bugs, restore and finish cut content, and improve support for modern systems. Unlike Bloodlines, KOTOR 2 apparently still has some sort of official support.

Yesterday brought a new KOTOR 2 patch on Steam, adding native support for widescreen resolutions and controllers, Steam Workshop for mods, and more.

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The 50 Best RPG On PC

An entirely objective ranking of the 50 best PC RPGs ever released. Covering the entire history of computer role-playing games is a daunting task and attempting to place the best games in such a broad genre in any kind of order is even more daunting. Thankfully, we are equal to all tasks and below, you will find the best fifty PC RPGs of all time.

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The RPG Scrollbars: The Worst Parts Of RPGs, Vol I

Hmmm? Sorry, is there something in my teeth?

As wonderful as RPGs are, some tropes and cliches and just general bloody annoyances really do spoil the fun. Some of them might only crop up occasionally, others just won’t go away. Some, you might think, are just petty irritations. But no! All these incontrovertible sins must be destroyed at once! Here’s a few of my least favourite offenders. What others would you add to the cursed list?

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Why Star Wars Makes For Better Games Than Films

Star Wars started as cinema and ended up as something else – lots of things, from pillow cases to theme park rides. But chief among them, the form that best captures the core of Star Wars now, is games. The last Star Wars I enjoyed watching was released two years after I was born, in 1983, but since then games have given me dozens of dogfights, blaster battles and lightspeed adventures layered with the nostalgia, hope and acceleration that is essentially Star Wars.

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There Will Be A Bargain: The Humble Star Wars Bundle

I guess I'll be able to immediately recognise the Dark Forces box art until the day I die

Hey cats, it’s hip to like Star Wars again rather than feeling dirty every time it’s mentioned. Of course, once JJ Abrams releases two hours of lens flare and nonsensical deus ex machinas it will be deeply uncool to like Star Wars again, so make hay while the sun shines. Star Wars videogames certainly are: first we get GoG re-releasing a bunch of previously out-of-print titles, and how the latest Humble Bundle is all about games from A Long Time Ago. For whatever you want to pay, you get KOTOR, Jedi Knight 3 and Dark Forces, which ain’t a bad set. There are more games if you want to pay more, but Republic credits are no good out here.
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Obsidian Hoping To Work With EA/BioWare On Star Wars

We now live in a world where The Sims: Star Wars or Need for Speed: Tosche Station could become things. I’m not saying it’s likely (though the former would not shock me in the slightest), but Star Wars is under new management, so who knows? For now, all we can say for sure is that BioWare, DICE, and Visceral are actively adding their own chapters to the space opera, but we won’t see results from those initial efforts until at least mid-2014 – and much later, in all likelihood. You’ll remember, however, that Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II developer Obsidian also has a rather ambitious idea floating around, and – last we heard – it was about to lay it before the greatest Sith Lord of them all: Mickey Mouse. So then, what happened there? And where does Obsidian’s new Star Wars RPG end up now that EA’s pulling the strings? I got in touch with Obsidian CEO Feargus Urquhart to find out.

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Obsidian’s Avellone On Torment, KOTOR 2, Alpha Protocol

Well, it’s official: Chris Avellone has joined the Torment: Tides of Numenera team. Kickstarter’s overwhelming monetary might has pushed another old band back together again, and now this one’s ready to give belabored brain birth to another tale for the ages. And dimensions. And whatever other creative gravy giblets they can fit into their twisted turducken of a setting. But Torment’s hardly the only thing on Avellone’s increasingly busy mind, as he’s also got both Project Eternity and Wasteland 2 to worry about. Oh, and let’s not forget that exceedingly tantalizing Star Wars pitch Obsidian CEO Feargus Urquhart was so thrilled to discuss. It’s tough, then, to imagine that Avellone has even a spare second these days, but he somehow managed to shove aside a few for a chat, so we used it as wisely as humanly possible. To discuss kindly stick figure knights and giggle at bad naming jokes, of course. Also, all of the above, Avellone’s role on Torment, and what an Alpha Protocol sequel would look like in a post-Walking-Dead world. 

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Obsidian’s Urquhart On The Future Of RPGs

Obsidian’s a company that’s always stricken me as bizarrely restless. Despite its near-legendary Black Isle legacy, the Project Eternity and South Park developer’s rarely had an easy time finding a comfortable place in the industry. But then, when you think about it, that’s not entirely surprising. Both RPGs and storytelling in games – Obsidian’s wheelhouses – have spent countless years in constant flux. And though recent times and a massively successful Kickstarter have given the developer some solid ground to stand on, the eager hands of change are once again threatening to yank the rug out from under it. Uncertainty’s permeated the entire industry as of late, but Obsidian CEO Feargus Urquhart has no intention of blindly following the future. His plan? To redefine the whole RPG genre. During the recent DICE Summit in Las Vegas, he and I chatted about that.

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New Republic: Obsidian Actively Pitching More Star Wars

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II was utterly masterful. Sure, it had more rough edges than a Sarlacc Pit who’s also a door-to-door woodchipper salesman, but the underlying tale mixed oppressive darkness, moral grays, and an eye for exactly what makes Star Wars tick to stirring effect. Personally, I think it far outstripped KOTOR 1, but to each their own. Naturally, though, I nearly grinned my face in half when Obsidian CEO Feargus Urquhart told me his Black-Isle-based collective is lobbying heavily to develop a new Star Wars RPG. “I would say it’s within the top three pitches we’ve ever come up with,” he told RPS during a recent interview. But wait, what about the EA-shaped Death Star hovering over The Old Republic? Well, Obsidian’s new tale is set in a very, very different time period.

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The Fixer: How To Restore Knights of the Old Republic II

Obsidian’s legendary/notorious Star Wars RPG is currently on a daily deal sale 75% at £1.74/$2.49 off until Friday 6pm GMT/Saturday 10am PST, likely the cheapest it’ll ever be on Steam. For that reason, today I’ll be providing a guide to getting the Steam edition of Knights of the Old Republic II – The Sith Lords working well on modern machines.

Widescreen resolutions, extra content, crash-dodging – this will make the infamously unfinished but ambitious and wonderfully-written RPG look and play far better than it did upon release.
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Get These: KOTOR 2 And Its Restored Content Mod

But are you *sure* you're doing the right thing by killing the monster that's attacking you right now, Kreia? Are you? I mean, it's not like I'd know. YOU'RE THE EXPERT.

Vaguely controversial statement time! I far prefer Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic 2 to KOTOR 1. I mean, BioWare’s original Death Star laser blast into a rather bland Star Wars gaming scene is a classic for a reason, but KOTOR 2 – for all its flaws – showed sparkling glints of actual brilliance. Unfortunately, a lot of people skipped it due to BioWare’s lack of involvement, bugginess, and an ending that sort of, well, didn’t exist. But that was then, and now – as of today – KOTOR 2’s finally on Steam. So I’m going to show you how to turn it into the game it should’ve been all along.

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Bastard Of The Old Republic: Part Two

The galaxy's biggest dick, in his look-at-me-I'm-a-dick goggles.

Talking of Knights of the Old Republic, part two of my adventures as Simon Evil, the galaxies most evil Jedi, is up on Eurogamer today. After the squirm-inducing antics of Part One, Simon Evil’s continuing douchebagging his way around the planets seemed to become slightly easier. Perhaps too easy…

“Get over it,” I told Mission, the 14-year-old Twi’lek who had joined my party. She was confiding in me about the horror of her home planet being utterly destroyed. The Sith had completely obliterated the population of Taris, countless millions had been slaughtered, and everything she had ever known or loved, beyond one Wookiee, was gone. Move on, whiny child.

It continues here.

Bastard Of The Old Republic, On Eurogamer

Simon Evil, and his especially evil goggles.

As mentioned in the last podcast, for Eurogamer I decided to perform the horrendous task of playing the original Knights of the Old Republic, making all the most awful dialogue and action choices available. The first part of this story, covering Simon Evil’s actions on Taris, is now up. It begins like this.

“There’s something you need to know about me. I’m a good guy. I’m a generally decent person. I have my many faults, and certainly my large share of means to be irritating, rude, and bothersome. But ultimately, it’s fair to say I’m a kind, reasonable individual. I’m not the sort of person who, for instance, would usually be found mocking victims of bullying, endorsing racism, or murdering victims of sexual assault.”

And continues here.

That KOTOR MMO: Big Reveal Soon?

Oddly, the story we ran four months back about EA letting slip that Bioware were working on a Star Wars: Knight of the old Republic MMORPG is one that continues to pick up sporadic comments even now. Seems there’s a lot of very, very strong feelings about KOTOR, with a lot of people concerned that it moving online means they’ll never see another single-player outing or have the various dangling plot-threads resolved. Even without any details whatsoever, there was a lot of spitting, expletive-filled fury about the game’s mere existence, much of which we removed in the name of peace, harmony and not having this site be the number one Google hit for “F*CK YOU EA!!!!!!!”

Sounds like we’ll soon find out whether folks’ fears are justified, as ‘orrible UK tabloid The Daily Star has blared that it’s off to see the game in San Francisco. Details and screens soon then, hopefully. Will it be Galaxies 2, WoW in space or will a rejuvenated Bioware – going on what we’ve seen of Dragon Age so far – come up with something new and distinct? Via CVG.