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Pre-E3: The Rules of Combat Are About to Change (Shadowrun)

CountZeroInt

Banned
Dec 27, 2005
778
0
0
Redmond, WA
I am soooo excited to finally see and play this game next week. I'm a huge fan of the guys at FASA and I've been crossing my fingers that this game will finally become a reality.

For folks who don't know about Shadowrun http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shadowrun is a good start.

Some history:

The world of Shadowrun is obviously a shameless ripoff of William Gibson's work such as the great book Neuromancer. Instead of being flattered he was somewhat offended and thought the addition of magic was silly. But that's what really makes it different from traditional cyberpunk: this world combines the best of science-fiction and the best of fantasy and mixes them together. You can be a troll magician fighting a dragon with guns and magic arrows.

The first Shadowrun video game was created by Beam Software and published by Data East for SNES and came out in 1993. This was an isometric RPG game that is fondly remembered for ahead of its time real time shootouts and magic battles. Beam Software would become Melbourne House, still one of Australia's only software houses.

The second Shadowrun video game was created by BlueSky Software and Sega and came out in 1994. http://www.skygames.com/ This game was even more unique in that it captured the feel of the pen and paper RPG by allowing you to distribute "karma points" to specific attributes, something which would later be copied by games like Duex Ex but with more of a "Grand Theft Auto" style addiction for running quests to earn more karma points to run that much faster/shoot that much quicker/take more of a beating. It was a free roaming world and part-RPG part-action part-adventure game. It's no wonder people are so eager to see this franchise rise from the ashes 12 years later!

The third Shadowrun video game was released only in Japan for Sega CD by a largely still mysterious Group SNE. It was more of a Where is Carmen Sandiego clone than an RPG, and wasn't very successful, but fans of Snatcher or Policenauts would probably dig it.

The fourth Shadowrun video game is where things start going awry. FASA was successful in working with Zipper on MechWarrior 3 so ended up handing them Shadowrun: Assassins intended to be released on Win98 PCs in about 1997 or 1998. What was the most popular game in 1997? Tomb Raider. What did the game turn out to be? A Tomb Raider clone, complete with a female lead. It wasn't a very good clone either, because tombs tend to be more interesting than corporate hallways. The game wasn't looking or playing very good so it got abrubtly cancelled, even though it was starting to generate a lot of hype and games like Quake 2 were also rising in popularing. I still have a flyer from GenCon where they handed out announcements about it (nice thing about being a fan of PC games for 10+ years you tend to keep stuff like that and Monkey Island wheels).

It's been a long time since then, and FASA for the most part seems to have been focusing on Mech games instead - there is a huge and stable fanbase for MechWarrior and MechCommander and these folks were kept happy. Rumors about a Shadowrun Xbox game started to pop up several years ago when Xbox was gaining popularity. This rumor continued to pop up about every E3 since then. Most people thought this was just a ridiculous rumor, but hey! Where there's smoke there's fire.

You can assume that FASA has been working on Shadowrun for a long time now, but also remember that Microsoft Games Studio has also gone through some major growing pains over the last 4 years.

If you've seen it there's an infamous video of the Crimson Skies team getting hammered by Ed Fries and other top management. It seems like there was a shakeup and that things are a lot better since those days, but during that shake up several teams and projects were undoubtedly affected. It's in a way a miracle that a Shadowrun game is still alive when a whole studio with a long and successful history like Digital Anvil got shut down. What happened was that Microsoft realized they needed to focus on a fewer set of titles, and pump out the best quality Triple AAA titles and nothing else. So with a background of publishing things like Sneakers and Blood Wake it's obvious they wanted to pick and choose a few franchises to make their big blockbuster franchises.

Why Shadowrun? Why indeed. It's 12 or 13 years old, the RPG itself has faded in popularity along with all pen and paper RPGs (most of those fans are currently living inside one or more of MMORPG worlds). Continuing popularity in Europe (especially Germany where fanpro.de is) and a loyal fanbase of nostalgic Genesis/SNES Shadowrun fans aside, there has to have been folks inside and outside the company who believe it is a world that hasn't fulfilled its potential.

If it is a FPS (and all signs and signals are pointing it to being anything but an ordinary FPS) you have to put some faith into the folks at FASA who believe in the Shadowrun world and want to reignite it. If the game is as big of a hit as I think it will be, it would be a no brainer to expand into RPG and MMORPG spaces with the franchise. Since all MGS teams are working on triologies it would be stupid to assume that this will be the only Shadowrun game ever.

If you're a fan of the game world my recommendation would be to suck up your personal expectations about the game you've been imagining for 13 years and try to imagine how fun it's going to be to see the Shadowrun world come back into popularity. If it's fun enough to become popular, and it's in the Shadowrun world, that's good enough for me, and I'm about as die hard of a fan of the Genesis game as they come.
 

NeXuSDK

Junior Member
Mar 5, 2006
861
0
1,045
36
Sweden
www.dice.se
GhaleonEB said:
And you are...?

A video game journalist. I write for Scandinavias biggest gaming magazine, Gamereactor (Gamereactor.dk/.no/.se)...

I also just got official confirmation on Alan Wake as a MS title and Halo 3, Fable 2 and Forza Motorsport 2...
 

krypt0nian

Banned
Jun 9, 2004
43,960
1
0
Orlando burbs



mmmmm......
 

GhaleonEB

Member
Jun 7, 2004
77,906
3
1,490
Oregon
NeXuSDK said:
A video game journalist. I write for Scandinavias biggest gaming magazine, Gamereactor (Gamereactor.dk/.no/.se)...

I also just got official confirmation on Alan Wake as a MS title and Halo 3, Fable 2 and Forza Motorsport 2...
Are you not bound by NDA's on this kind of stuff?
 

NeXuSDK

Junior Member
Mar 5, 2006
861
0
1,045
36
Sweden
www.dice.se
GhaleonEB said:
Are you not bound by NDA's on this kind of stuff?

One would think, but this one apparently slipped. It wasn't an official confirmation per say, but the confirmation was part of a biography of a MS profile... :)
 
Jan 28, 2005
20
0
0
To the guy that questioned the Dwarven decker:

I'm pretty sure the new rulebook (released over last summer, if memory serves) combined the rules for rigging with the rules for decking in an effort to simplify. Can anyone confirm? I haven't played the new edition.
 

krypt0nian

Banned
Jun 9, 2004
43,960
1
0
Orlando burbs
Ollie Cromwell said:
To the guy that questioned the Dwarven decker:

I'm pretty sure the new rulebook (released over last summer, if memory serves) combined the rules for rigging with the rules for decking in an effort to simplify. Can anyone confirm? I haven't played the new edition.


Totally true. Rigging is decking (and decking no longer requires a physical "deck")
 
Aug 24, 2005
6,518
0
0
I can see it now; a straight-up FPS where the only thing that passes as "role-playing" is choosing your character at the beginning: do you want to play as the big slow guy with a powerful gun, the quick and agile girl with the sniper rifle, or the dude with the sword? :/
 

krypt0nian

Banned
Jun 9, 2004
43,960
1
0
Orlando burbs
Confidence Man said:
I can see it now; a straight-up FPS where the only thing that passes as "role-playing" is choosing your character at the beginning: do you want to play as the big slow guy with a powerful gun, the quick and agile girl with the sniper rifle, or the dude with the sword? :/

I can see far more interesting things.
 

Mrbob

Member
Jun 7, 2004
63,747
6
0
I don't know much about Shadowrun (DON'T HIT ME >__<), but I'm really interested in how this turns out.
 

Maximilian E.

AKA MS-Evangelist
Feb 17, 2006
2,383
0
1,325
41
CountZeroInt said:
I am soooo excited to finally see and play this game next week. I'm a huge fan of the guys at FASA and I've been crossing my fingers that this game will finally become a reality.

For folks who don't know about Shadowrun http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shadowrun is a good start.

Some history:

The world of Shadowrun is obviously a shameless ripoff of William Gibson's work such as the great book Neuromancer. Instead of being flattered he was somewhat offended and thought the addition of magic was silly. But that's what really makes it different from traditional cyberpunk: this world combines the best of science-fiction and the best of fantasy and mixes them together. You can be a troll magician fighting a dragon with guns and magic arrows.

The first Shadowrun video game was created by Beam Software and published by Data East for SNES and came out in 1993. This was an isometric RPG game that is fondly remembered for ahead of its time real time shootouts and magic battles. Beam Software would become Melbourne House, still one of Australia's only software houses.

The second Shadowrun video game was created by BlueSky Software and Sega and came out in 1994. http://www.skygames.com/ This game was even more unique in that it captured the feel of the pen and paper RPG by allowing you to distribute "karma points" to specific attributes, something which would later be copied by games like Duex Ex but with more of a "Grand Theft Auto" style addiction for running quests to earn more karma points to run that much faster/shoot that much quicker/take more of a beating. It was a free roaming world and part-RPG part-action part-adventure game. It's no wonder people are so eager to see this franchise rise from the ashes 12 years later!

The third Shadowrun video game was released only in Japan for Sega CD by a largely still mysterious Group SNE. It was more of a Where is Carmen Sandiego clone than an RPG, and wasn't very successful, but fans of Snatcher or Policenauts would probably dig it.

The fourth Shadowrun video game is where things start going awry. FASA was successful in working with Zipper on MechWarrior 3 so ended up handing them Shadowrun: Assassins intended to be released on Win98 PCs in about 1997 or 1998. What was the most popular game in 1997? Tomb Raider. What did the game turn out to be? A Tomb Raider clone, complete with a female lead. It wasn't a very good clone either, because tombs tend to be more interesting than corporate hallways. The game wasn't looking or playing very good so it got abrubtly cancelled, even though it was starting to generate a lot of hype and games like Quake 2 were also rising in popularing. I still have a flyer from GenCon where they handed out announcements about it (nice thing about being a fan of PC games for 10+ years you tend to keep stuff like that and Monkey Island wheels).

It's been a long time since then, and FASA for the most part seems to have been focusing on Mech games instead - there is a huge and stable fanbase for MechWarrior and MechCommander and these folks were kept happy. Rumors about a Shadowrun Xbox game started to pop up several years ago when Xbox was gaining popularity. This rumor continued to pop up about every E3 since then. Most people thought this was just a ridiculous rumor, but hey! Where there's smoke there's fire.

You can assume that FASA has been working on Shadowrun for a long time now, but also remember that Microsoft Games Studio has also gone through some major growing pains over the last 4 years.

If you've seen it there's an infamous video of the Crimson Skies team getting hammered by Ed Fries and other top management. It seems like there was a shakeup and that things are a lot better since those days, but during that shake up several teams and projects were undoubtedly affected. It's in a way a miracle that a Shadowrun game is still alive when a whole studio with a long and successful history like Digital Anvil got shut down. What happened was that Microsoft realized they needed to focus on a fewer set of titles, and pump out the best quality Triple AAA titles and nothing else. So with a background of publishing things like Sneakers and Blood Wake it's obvious they wanted to pick and choose a few franchises to make their big blockbuster franchises.

Why Shadowrun? Why indeed. It's 12 or 13 years old, the RPG itself has faded in popularity along with all pen and paper RPGs (most of those fans are currently living inside one or more of MMORPG worlds). Continuing popularity in Europe (especially Germany where fanpro.de is) and a loyal fanbase of nostalgic Genesis/SNES Shadowrun fans aside, there has to have been folks inside and outside the company who believe it is a world that hasn't fulfilled its potential.

If it is a FPS (and all signs and signals are pointing it to being anything but an ordinary FPS) you have to put some faith into the folks at FASA who believe in the Shadowrun world and want to reignite it. If the game is as big of a hit as I think it will be, it would be a no brainer to expand into RPG and MMORPG spaces with the franchise. Since all MGS teams are working on triologies it would be stupid to assume that this will be the only Shadowrun game ever.

If you're a fan of the game world my recommendation would be to suck up your personal expectations about the game you've been imagining for 13 years and try to imagine how fun it's going to be to see the Shadowrun world come back into popularity. If it's fun enough to become popular, and it's in the Shadowrun world, that's good enough for me, and I'm about as die hard of a fan of the Genesis game as they come.

ohh shit!
Awesome text dude..
 

Zaphod

Member
May 13, 2005
2,456
0
0
Heart of Gold
I pissed myself when I saw that teaser pic. I knew exactly what that was. All the old art in this thread brings back very fond memories. I can now not freaking wait any longer till E3. Oh and Oblivion style Shadowrun would make me so happy. This is about all I can say right now without bursting into Isamu type hysterics.
 

LuCkymoON

Banned
Apr 7, 2005
6,018
0
0
41
Dallas
For those of you who don't know the history of FASA:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FASA said:
FASA Corporation was an American publisher of role-playing games, wargames and boardgames from 1981 till 2001. Originally the name FASA was an acronym for "Freedonian Aeronautics and Space Administration", a joking allusion to the Marx Brothers film Duck Soup, though in later years the letters of the name did not actually stand for anything.

FASA first appeared as a Traveller licensee, producing supplements for that GDW role-playing game, especially the work of the Keith Brothers. The company went on to establish itself as major gaming company with the publication of the first licensed Star Trek RPG, then several successful original games. Noteworthy lines included Battletech and Shadowrun. Their Star Trek role-playing supplements and tactical ship game enjoyed popularity outside the gaming hobby as, at the time, official descriptions of the Star Trek universe were not common, and the gaming supplements offered details the fans craved. The wildly successful Battletech line led to a series of video games, some of the first virtual reality gaming suites called Virtual World (created by a subdivision of the company known at the time of development as 'ESP,' an acronym for 'Extremely Secret Project') and a Saturday-morning animated TV show.

Games published by FASA included:

Star Trek
BattleTech (MechWarrior)
Shadowrun
Renegade Legion
Earthdawn
Crimson Skies
VOR the Maelstrom
Crucible
Doctor Who
FASA unexpectedly ceased active operations in early 2001, but still exists as a corporation holding IP (intellectual property rights) which it licenses to other publishers. Contrary to popular belief, the company did not go bankrupt. Allegedly the owners decided to quit while the company was still financially sound in a market they perceived as going downhill.

The BattleTech, Shadowrun and Earthdawn properties were licensed off to WizKids, who in turn licensed their publication to FanPro LLC. However, the Earthdawn license was recently returned to FASA. Living Room Games publishes Earthdawn (Second Edition) while RedBrick Limited now holds a license to continue publishing First Edition material. Crimson Skies was originally developed by Zipper Interactive under the FASA Interactive brand in late 2000 and used under license by FASA; FASA Interactive had been purchased by Microsoft, so naturally the rights for Crimson Skies stayed with Microsoft. Rights to the miniatures game VOR the Maelstrom reverted to the designer Mike "Skuzzy" Nielson, but it has not been republished in any form due partly to legal difficulties.

Retrieved from "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FASA"
 

human5892

Queen of Denmark
Jun 8, 2004
6,999
1
1,415
Oh snap, it's for the PC too?

Not like my PC could play the game, but it's still good to know...
 

trmas

Banned
Mar 12, 2005
2,464
0
0
Need a third person option like Oblivion. I can't handle another FPS... especially from a license with such promise.
 

cbrotherson

Member
May 27, 2005
553
0
1,245
London
cbrotherson.blogspot.com
I'd love to see an Oblivion style open world in the Shadowrun universe. The 16-bit games were ahead of their time anyway - I remember walking into a bar in the SNES version and 'accidently' executing a bar fly. Just pulled out my gun, and blew him away. Didnt think it was allowed, given all my previous RPG experiences didnt let you interact like that with NPCs.

Then rounding up a posse and going on a rampage around the docks.

The dialogue and clue system... the Matrix hacking for cash and data... jesus. So good. And still stands up today.

It could look like an Xbox game for all I care - just make the game as open-ended and intelligent as it was back on the SNES and Megadrive. And not the weak ass follow-ups.
 

krypt0nian

Banned
Jun 9, 2004
43,960
1
0
Orlando burbs
MightyHedgehog said:
Street samurai FTW! Though, I'm more interested in see some mage/shaman artwork. And I'm stealing your avatar, krypt0nian. :D


Yes and yes.

And these underwear are about to change after seeing the clearer pics!
 
Jun 7, 2004
21,700
3
0
48
NM USA
krypt0nian said:
And these underwear are about to change after seeing the clearer pics!

I don't think I'm gonna change mine this whole week. What's the point? I'm gonna soil myself with happiness or disappointment either way. :lol
 

KyanMehwulfe

Member
Aug 26, 2004
10,844
195
1,540
Huntusk
www3.telus.net
Jun 7, 2004
21,700
3
0
48
NM USA
WHAT THE FUCK, MS! Why are you motherfuckers so lazy? I can't believe you fucks are going to fucking turn this shit into a god damned fucking CS-clone? FUCK! Such a great universe with lots of potential to be much greater than something as standard as a team-based fucking shooter! FUCK! I especially hate you fucks for putting the Shadowrun name on it. FUCK YOU! Now I'm going to end up buying in on name alone. FUCK.