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There's a false dichotomy going on here that's bugging me.It goes like this: "An old, isometric game you could NEVER sell to a publisher because, uh... it's old! So make that, Obsidian!"Except, to the contrary, an isometric, old-school, traditional RPG with low costs and low risks (to the niche being sold to) would have no trouble finding a publisher. I mean, look at the success GoG have had. If a developer approached a group of publishers asking them to sell such a game, they'd probably end up with more than a few offers.

 

I think you might be wrong in that - Tim Schafer wanted to make a point and click adventure game for 400 grand. In the grand scheme of things, not a ton of money... and to be sure, Obsidian is in a better state than Doublefine, especially after New Vegas outsold Fallout 3 (I believe?). It's very possible that they're getting stonewalled by publishers who look at the genre and think to themselves "nobody's made a game like that for over a decade, there must be a reason for that, let's stick with the game with explosions. People still like explosions right?"

 

I think character-driven (as in, beyond "if you say nice things to them throughout the game you might get to see a bra"), story-heavy (as in, "there might be thirty minutes to a few hours without an explosion or a bunch of dead bodies"... I really liked the Citadel section in Mass Effect 1, for the record), thoughtful (as in, beyond "red dialogue makes people mad at me, but I look really cool, while blue dialogue has less people die") RPGs really are at a premium. I don't even have to make a case in point, because other than The Witcher, I can't really name anything in recent memory that Obsidian hasn't made.

 

Speaking of The Witcher, by the way, something I've always found fascinating in games is when you're personally discriminated against. It's one thing to say "oh yes, elves are heavily distrusted and treated poorly in urban centers", but it's another thing to have an elf player walk into a town square and have a bunch of shops close up, and maybe somebody tries to shank you on the way to the can in the local bar. Another game I think emphasized this really well was the original Deus Ex (Human Revolution did this too, come to think of it). Near the middle of the game, when Icarus was screwing with your circuits and talking about how he could make your heart explode in a few hours if you didn't stop him, and he was completely serious, it had a profound effect on me (and I'd think other people). It was a weakness that was uniquely yours, and your enemies were actively exploiting it. It's a nice change of pace to be the giant enemy crab, I guess.

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um, I'm not really interested in seeing people's planescape: torment fanfictions in game form. please do your own original thing, obsidian. (not directed at anyone in particular)

Sir, given that the author of this blog is the writer that created the story of Planescape: Torment I don't think the term "fanfic" can be applied to any future work he might do to the story he originally created.

 

We can make arguments ala George Lucas that he shouldn't retouch it after so much time, but a fanfic it is not.

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Seriously people. As much as you or me would like a new game in Planescape setting, it ain't going to happen. Same goes for Arcanum 2. Some of the commenters have already posted reasons why but I will quote one of the latest.

 

To everyone saying 'Torment 2', 'Kotor 3', 'BG3' etc. Think about it. The point for the whole kickstarter thing is to have Obsidian maintain 100% autonomy on the project they are making. If they are tied to existing IP, the people holding those licenses would hold a large amount of control over this project, ruining its purpose. Additionally, the surge of sequels we've seen in the past few years is due to publishers wanting relatively safe returns on their investments. Though this only seems to work for Activision and Zenimax (sometimes), it is still the course that most studios are going to take. Why not use this to free up a studio to completely buck that trend and use creativity and innovative to get sales - not rehashing.

 

Second reason why we won't have another Planescape game is that I think WotC discontinued Planescape a few years back so I don't think they would allow Obsidian to use it's licence anyway.

 

As for people asking for a remake, no. It doesn't need a remake.

 

Original IP as a spiritual successor for Planescape or something like that would be nice (I like the idea of 'Torment in space') but Obsidian should make a game that they want to make.

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I honestly think making another game in Planescape universe is a great idea - It doesn't have to be Torment, it just needs to be polished, immersive, with lots of dialogues (like Torment! Not less), creative and it should make player wonder about philosophical/ethical stuff.

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I would like to see something that injects fantasy into history, like the PSP game Jeanne d'Arc. Maybe a conqueror like Napoleon or Alexander the Great gets his hands on a magical force or something.

 

If the gameplay is old-school, that's great. However, what I don't want to see is something where there's a conscious effort to make it look and sound old. I'm not asking for great graphics, but on the other hand, don't make it look dated. I don't know if I would call it a trend, but there have been some games in the last few years that deliberately look like a lost NES or SNES game. Examples of this are games like Cave Story, Soul Caster, and Cthulu Saves the World. Even Capcom got into it with Mega Man 9 and 10. I see these games as having imposed annoying limitations on their look and sound for an attempt at playing on nostalgia. The problem for me is, I don't get nostalgic about old graphics; I get nostalgic about old GAMES.

 

I don't expect something on the level of Trine, but I don't think it's too difficult to produce a game that looks modern on a budget. Something like Bastion would be terrific, although even that game sets a high bar with its art.

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Registered just to be able to post in this!

 

There's already been enough talk by the looks of it (if 17 pages are anything to judge by), so I'll try to keep my own thoughts brief. Firstly, I think this is a stellar idea - and a big nod to your fans, it reminds me of the way game developers used to conduct business back in the beginning of the century. Direct contact with the playerbase, as opposed to dry, corporate walls of text.

 

While one of my dreams has always been to see a Planescape 2, Baldur's Gate III or, heck, NwN 3...I have to say, I fully realise they are quite unrealistic. Those games are in the past and I think that's where they should be left, let's have something new and different. I'm not going to comment on the IP, I think that's for Obsidian to decide for themselves, but as long as it's something in-house, they don't risk problems with rights, publishers and setting restrictions.

 

What I think many people here can agree on, is that the game should be a tip of the hat to all those games that made up the late 90's and early 2000. Back to the roots, as it were, I fully believe that's the way to go about it.

 

I have to say something though, seeing that a lot of posters are saying "make it something ground-breaking, pushing the envelope, etc, etc" - that's not likely to happen. Whatever sum of money we gather from this project, it will definitely not be nowhere near what a full-fledged company can provide in terms of financial backing. So let's keep it simple, yeah?

 

I'm quite keen on the idea of a 2d isometric, tactical turn-based RPG. I think it is a very solid decision - not only does it have that nostalgia factor many of us desire, but it also cuts back on production costs a lot. By all means, I'm no professional, but if you don't have to spend time and money on all those graphical fluff games seem to fall for nowadays, a game with deep storyline and interesting mechanics is quite possible. Even with limited funds. I don't how how popular this will be, but I also say - do away with most of the voice acting. Let's see the return of the good ol' richly detailed text, as opposed to pointless one-liners.

 

If this is a fan-funded project, then don't go down the route of corporate interests - with their flashy trailers, PR bombardment, "amazing" graphics and little to no gameplay. Keep it simple, so the complexity can be allowed to surface. (I realise that sentence makes no sense)

 

So to sum it up, definitely going to support this. And as long we get a worthy spiritual successor of those old school RPG's I'll be happy and consider this a historical moment for RPG fans as a whole.

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Ok, for in case it wasn't mentioned in the last 17 pages, i will just quote from Obsidian's Wikipedia Page:

 

 

Obsidian Entertainment

 

 

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 

 

Wheel of Time (in development)[16] (Windows, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3)

 

 

What is the question again??!!

 

Whether it plays like Neverwinter Nights or Planescape..... just do it!

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Honestly I would prefer something new and completely unlike anything on the market like many of your games but I trust you guys to make the right decision so if you do this you have my money no matter what choice is made.

EDIT: Also a bit of advice I would wait until may at least if you were going to do this at all. Between Tales of Graces F< Mass Effect 3, Xenoblade Chronicles and The Witcher 2 Enhanced Edition for Xbox 360 RPG fans will have a lot on their hands and may heavily decrease how many people will invest in your kickstarter. This is all hypothetical granted but still I do think it would be smart to wait for people to not have so many releases coming up.

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A fantasy RPG set in the "New World" where you're encountering native tribes and unknown monsters and such, and what you accomplish through the game affects how your "home colony" develops. For instance you could secure resources which would grow the population and make more money available, you could war on or sign treaties with local tribes which would mean different things depending on the treaty or how the war goes (Treaty could mean increased trade with limited expansion, while war could mean the colony gets pushed to the brink or unfettered expansion depending on how well equipped or populous the colony is, etc.) You would also be dealing with rival or allied colonies, hostile creatures based on north/south american mythology, etc.

 

It would be like 1600s tech level with firearms and the more slender weapons and such. Basically more swashbuckly with pirates and sashes and big hats and such instead of huge fantasy pauldrons.

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As long as Chris Avellone and the other writers at Obsidian get to tell an awesome story through a game that is on par with Planescape: Torment and Mask of the Betrayer without having publishers or franchise holders demanding creative control or rushing the product for some target release window, I will chip in and I will play it, whatever it is.

 

However I do have some ideas that I would love to see considered for whatever game comes out of this. Ideally I would like to see it be some sort of 2D top down open world party based RPG, and as follows are some of my ideas for such a game.

 

- Setting wise I prefer Fantasy for open-world games, as it is much easier to get the sense of exploration that you should from a society with limited means of travel as opposed to Space games where you have a space ship and yet cannot go about the galaxy landing on and exploring any area of any planet like you think you should given the setting, and its understandable why not, development time. Fantasy settings are much easier to let you feel like you are exploring somewhere new and aren't being boxed in by restrictions. However I would prefer something Not Tolkienesque. Stuff like Arcanum(minus the standard fantasy races), Asheron's Call, Planescape, but fully of Obsidian's creation.

 

- Classless character system. Something with a variety of skills or skill trees to purchase or invest in and able to mix and match to make the character you want.

 

- Large open world to explore. The bigger the better, preferably with some degree of randomness to improve replayability and sense of exploration. Multiple continents, with control of a naval vessel(bonus points for naval combat being included) to sail between them and search for and explore small uncharted islands found throughout the worlds oceans. Think stuff like Skyrim and Fallout: New Vegas combined with The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker but on a much larger scale. This is primarily why I would prefer a top-down 2D game, as without having to worry as much about the Z axis, two things occur, development time speeds up, and randomly generated areas appear more believable through more easily implementable algorithms for them, just look at how bad the random environments were in Hellgate: London, 3D gameplay and Randomness are hard to pull off right.

 

- Randomly generated loot. I love loot. I can't get enough of loot crawls like Diablo and Titan Quest, and my favorite MMO was Asheron's Call where quest items were not the best items in the game, but the rare hard to find randomly generated stuff was highly sought after. But you don't typically see loot systems like these in strong story-based RPGs, and I am not sure why.

 

- New Game +. Some form of way to continue after completing the main story with all your levels and loot intact, so you can continue leveling and searching for better loot, either through continued exploration of the open world, or resetting the main story and side quests and bumping up the difficulty.

 

- More dialogue options. No self-limiting 'Dialogue Wheel' cutting down to the number of responses you have to someone. Throw in as many condition-locked dialogue options as you can that appear or not appear based on different factors including but not limited to having a particularly high stat, a particularly low stat, or having different skills/perks/feats or anything of that sort.

 

- Time Travel! Nothing potentially plothole inducing like you see in movies and TV shows like Terminator and Heroes, but limited short-length time control, combining mechanics seen in Prince of Persia: Sands of Time and The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask. Time control during combat would simply let you rewind to change tactics when things go wrong. However the more complicated side of Time control would be like Majora's Mask. Some story factor(s) would limit the length of the game to an arbitrary number of in-game days(such as the 72 hours in MM) that depending on your actions could either be lengthened(Or shortened if you totally screw the pooch). NPCs and side quests would be on a schedule that stays the same each time you start over at Day 1(barring any triggered events from your actions during your current timeline). Basically just like Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask. I've always liked the concept, but have wanted to see it done in a game with actually interesting characters and side quests.

 

This could even change dialogue options, talking to someone and getting information out of them could open up new dialogue options the next time you reset the timeline and talk to them again, with your character knowing things that NPC has not told them. At the very least it could be used to humorously mess with characters heads, but a more interesting example could involve tortuing information out of someone, going back in time to talk to that NPC again and lieing about where you got that information in order to get some sort of new response out of the NPC, such as say, implying to a member of some organization that their organization has a leak, to make them paranoid and end up doing something new oustide of their normal routine. I feel like there could be lots of possiblities with this concept.

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Make an epic western RPG (no, not like Red Dead Redmption which was lacking on the story and interesting charcters even) with Clint Eastwood as the main character and a story on par with The Good, the bad and the ugly.

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I've been a massive fan of everything Black Isle ever made, or were involved in, (including Lionheart). My formative years were spent adventuring in the vast endlessness of the Wasteland, exploring dungeons in the Forgotten Realms. I just need to get this out of the way first; thank you. Thank you so much.

 

Anyway, moving on (and to echo everyone else's sentiment)...make what you want. It's your choice. Without a publisher breathing down your neck, you can attempt to create whatever you wish and won't be forced to add unnecessary elements, such as the temple at the beginning of Fallout 2 - just the idea of you guys not being held to certain expectations/deadlines by THE MAN is appealing.

 

...but I can understand that this probably isn't very helpful, just as much as when everyone you go to lunch with at work goes "Oh, I don't mind where we go/what we eat!" To add another echo, ehm; yes, I'd love a new isometric RPG. That'd be brill. Don't much care if it's real-time (with pause) or turn-based, but attempting to implement a system that incorporates both methods will likely end up flawed *COUGH* FALLOUT TACTICS/ARCANUM *COUGH*. In terms of a predefined setting/story, Knallfix's suggestion of Elric of Melnibon

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I posted earlier saying that I wanted to see something in the vein of Fallout (turn-based combat, classless SPECIAL-like char system, open-ended, choice packed) but in a modern setting of your own creation.

 

But seeing as there are a lot of people who want a fantasy-based game, I figure there might be some nice ideas in there as well. Specially if you do something like the old Infinity Engine games (which people here obviously really want). But you could pair them with some of the awesome ideas you've implemented in Storm of Zehir. Mainly:

  • full party creation (+ NPCs along the way)
  • skill-based party conversation system
  • overland map

And pair all this with an intricate crafting system and an austere world economy (it's the new rave man!) that forces you to make do with what you've got. No getting stinking rich after about a quarter of the game. Actually, no getting stinking rich ever. ;)

 

Also, do it using your new engine. I loved how it looked in DS3, and it also ran very smoothly.

 

Peace!

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I mean, look at the success GoG have had.

 

Hi Wulf

 

GOG is a small operation with very few mouths to feed out of the money they generate. None of the developers of those old titles see a penny from the game sales, the profits from sales go to CDProjekt and the publishers who own the IPs. That (beyond the GoG team themselves) no ones livelihood is wholly dependent upon their sales is why it is a 'success'. That it exists as an operation doesn't necessarily equate to there being a massive market for an old skool RPGs I'm afraid.

 

Certainly there's probably some market, but whether it could be mined profitably is another matter entirely, as not only is it a case of keeping your overheads low, but also selling your product at a price point that is going to be attractive to customers.

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Also registered just to answer here. I think we (as in, gamers) shouldn't post complete scenarios and setting ideas, instead we should focus on gameplay elements. Because honestly, the preferences with regards to the former are just so varied that it's almost impossible to form a coherent "community response". Please don't expect Obsidian to do the tale YOU would like to see - another thousand of players want their own.

 

That being said, I'd like the game to have following elements/features:

- Deep, meaningful story where every move would contribute somehow to the "greater picture". I don't like/want an open world - Torment wasn't open and it played well. Just bring up a story this good and I'll be pleased. I won't request great characters cause I know these are already in Obsidian standard package :)

- Rich world. Well, I believe you guys wouldn't make anything else, but I just want to express how I appreciate learning all the lore. Mass Effect for example has a medicore story, but it's world is well-thought and quite original.

- I don't even need character stats or anything. You could make an action or adventure game, as long as above requirements are reached.

- But if you do character stats: please make real-time, optionally pausable combat. Many people above expressed that they would prefer turn-based combat, but as much as I like this kind of cRPG's for their scenarios, I prefer non-tb combat as more lively and more realistic. If you would like to please both sides, a mix like Arcanum would do, but please polish it a little bit more cause real-time in Arcanum was practically unusable for me :(

- NOT being constrained by publisher's funding/deadlines/IP. If an IP comes with any sort of strings attached - don't buy it and make your own.

- Graphics are not really an issue - they can be 2D isometric, 2.5D or 3D as far as I'm concerned. You guys are doing good in every kind of environment. Though I would prefer TPP-esque model, as in, don't try to copy Might & Magic or Wizardry...

- Multiple endings and romanceable characters would be nice.

- Additional props if you make the game moddable.

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Like many others I have just registered to contribute sth. to this topic.

 

I would really enjoy another old school RPG like Baldurs Gate.

Additionally, I would be very glad to see it in the Forgotten Realms scenario of the DnD universe. It goes without saying that this would mean a complex battle system based on the DnD rules and a deep story with nice characters etc.

From my point of view you could just use the old NWN2 engine or even 2D graphics to create a nice isometric game.

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Just want to add.

I'd to support any old-style (the best way isometric) game. Preferably Forgotten Realms, Eberron or some other elaborated setting.

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"Knights of the Old Republic 3"! That would be a dream comming true. Even if the graphics stay the same, just no bull**** like SWTOR(it is an insult for a fan like me). Just needs a new story and a few extras. More planets to explore. More sidequests, larger areas and implement a better pod racing mini game. Like the Pc Game Star Wars Pod racers.

 

Another game id be interested in would be "Alpha Protocol 2". But you need to implement more skills and different paths through the leves.

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I want Planescape Torment 2, and I was really looking forward to the Aliens RPG that was discontinued.

And please make sure that you don't relese the game too soon, get rid of those nasty bugs first...

Otherwise just do a game that you really want to do! Keep up the good work...

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I would pay for a turn base medieval game that works in the theatrical map like medieval 2 total war and in the battle map like mount and blade warband. That would be the ultimate medieval game ever made. The political strategically complexness of the total war series and the adrenaline pure battles of warband. It will also allow coop campaign and other players can take control of any unit on the battlefield during another player s battle so no one gets bored. Fighting would earn experience points that would give players special abilities to the type of unit they control.

 

Also I would pay for a RTS game that lets you customize your technologies (like warzone 2100) and lets you chose how to build your units and structures according to your strategy. You would be able to bring those units and structures to battle with friends, either vs or coop. That would be the best RTS because since you can create your own units from the technologies that the game gives you (or better lets you research them), there wouldn

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Main character shouldn't be a white straight male(or an analogue of such), how about a game in setting where those word have little meaning, have a society with a colourful bisexual androgynous populace, why not have the majority of the population be non-human, some sort of original humanoid (and not an ethnic stereotype in fantasy/sci-fi guise).
Great idea, let's focus on the story and setting on abnormal sexuality. Bioware has blazed the trail on this by publishing several high profile RPG/dating sims. Obsidian just needs to take it to the next level and abandon all pretense of story beyond who gets to bang who! /sarcasmAlright, that might have been a little bit harsh. Point being, sex should not be the main focus or even a heavy element in RPG's. Leave that to the dating sims.

 

by no means did I want sex to the main focus, it'd be nice if there was a game capable of talking about sex and relationships in a mature meaningful manner, that wasn't from atlus, but I don't think obsidian are capable of that.

 

No, I just want a game where the protagonist isn't the same standard character as every other video game, I'm only asking for a bit of diversity.

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Having read a bit more and understood that there is little to no chance of doing a Planescape game or any other sequel without going into the same problems you are hoping to avoid via kickstarter, I'd like to just note the bare crux of the matter, what most people agree is what we want.

 

An oldschool, isometric, story-heavy, well written RPG, if possible with a proven-to-work combat system (whether from a p&p RPG, or wherever else you can find one.) I think we can agree on this, no? And frankly the details are better left to, y'know, people that do this for a living.

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So in my opinion you should be careful about how much money you are expecting out of this. If you're lucky, you can repeat the success that Double Fine had. But still you probably should not put in a number such as 1 million dollars to start with.It's clear that Double Fine aimed too low with 300.000 for the game (+100.000 for the documentary), but you have to remember that you don't usually see numbers this high on Kickstarter. You should probably aim for a game that you can make with a few people and a low budget of something like 500.000 dollars.So from the technical side something old school without voice acting and probably with 2D art.And then the idea of this entire thing is to fund a game that wouldn't get made through the classical publishing process. And I do believe that your chances of Kickstarter success are highest if you do something like that.That being said I would like to play a truly fantastical game again. As in a game outside of the boring elves'n'dwarves fantasy worlds. And I would like to play something that is really heavy on story. Which doesn't necessarily mean that there has to be a lot of story, but rather that the story is very important to the game.Otherwise I'll trust you to do something awesome. :)

 

I very much agree with you on that point, switching to Alpha funding once they've got that initial kick start, would probably be a big help towards giving the game a bigger budget, plus it'd help involve the community all the more.

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