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Obsidian's ideas for a new Kickstarter (3rd Part RPS interview)


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“There’s something we’re talking about that I think would be really cool, but it’s not an original property,” he says. “It’s a licensed property. But it’s not Alpha Protocol! It’s something we can still do a ton of creative stuff with, though. And then the other thing is an original property. Also, there’s a third thing that somebody approached us with, but I really don’t think that’s going to work out.”

 

 

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Bleh, barely any of that sounded appealing, beyond just the general idea of more Kickstarter games.

 

I'm skeptical of an episodic open-world game. Doesn't it defeat the whole purpose of an open world if you break it up into small chunks? I suppose they could make it so that the episodes each just introduce new areas and factions that integrate seamlessly into a complete game.

 

Don't like the idea of licensed stuff, or of doing too many spinoffs too soon within the Pillars of Eternity world either. More original properties please. Pillars of Eternity already looks better than Forgotten Realms, so I would prefer that they just make an original ripoff/homage of whatever they're thinking of licensing.

 

My ideal idea of a second Obsidian Kickstarter project would be a phase-based isometric scifi game, with party-based fighting as well as FTL-like ship combat. Picture FTL meets Frozen Synapse meets Mass Effect. Barring that, just anything original or weird (I'm not saying the sci-fi idea is weird. It's a pretty obvious route to go).

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My personal hope is that Obsidian (and xile, larian, ...) make enough money from these kickstart games that they can produce equivalent of aaa work without publishers.

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That's not to ssay they should abandon kickstart per sey (they might actually enjoy the immediate feedback and crowd support to gauge interest in an idea and pool of people for alpha/beta testing) but I am hopeful that this route reduces the influence of publishers on 'big' games (or big rpg) as well as typical publisher requirement that games be titled towards consoles (which for me is not relevant since I do not play consoles and am tired of interfaces being handicapped).

 

Having said this i'm not sure if Eternity will be a great game (will learn more when it becomes available) as I have a few (serious?) concerns about some of the chosen mechanics. Still hopefully it will earn enough after kickstart that they have a pool of cash to help with future developemtns (kind of wonder how that works - if they will take funds from kickstart games and use them to help with future 'fan' style games or if ithey will sort of evaporate but I am getting ahead of myself as it remains to be seen what the post kickstart earnings wil entail).

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So the Eternity team would roll over to the new non-Eternity Kickstarter? wat ? What about the Expansion ... and the sequel ;)

 

Can't say I'm interested in the 'more for the masses' ideas. I'd love to see Josh get a chance to do his historical RPG, even if it was just a small one. I'd also like to see a Wuxia-style RPG (Ancient China style). An Obsidian space opera / sci-fi would also be interesting depending on what the concept was. Can't say I was too big of a fan of that Backspace one or whatever.

 

Definitely keep the 2D background style though pls :azncuteface:

Edited by Sensuki
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Hmm... yeah, I don't see how you could do an episodic, open-world game. I mean if they can pull it off, great, but it seems conceptually problematic (although I'm not a designer, so who knows what they could come up with). I guess we'll find out what they decide some time next spring. 

Edited by eimatshya
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So the Eternity team would roll over to the new non-Eternity Kickstarter? wat ? What about the Expansion ... and the sequel ;)

 

I wondered about that too. That part didn't come with a direct quote though, so maybe its just RPS assuming.

Edited by C2B
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Just posted this in the other thread but I'll repost here

 

Generally speaking my initial reaction is meh.

 

I like open world games but its become too much of a buzz word lately.  Obsidian proved to me with New Vegas they know how to do an open world + good dialogue and story though.

 

I also hate the idea of episodic content.   Yes it has worked in the past for some games, but I'm the type of guy who wants to experience the whole game not sit and wait a few months for chapter 2 because I'm done with chapter 1.

 

There's honestly not much in there to comment on.

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What struck me most about this interview is how all or most of it seems like stuff suited to pitching to publishers. Everyone's eager to replicate the successes of Skyrim, so

 

  1. It seems like Obsidian should be able to find a publisher to fund such a game.
  2. Even if they get rejected by everybody, there's not much reason for us gamers to care since we'll have plenty of choice in this genre as everyone seeks to make a Skyrim killer. The Witcher 3 in particular will probably be better than anything Obsidian attempts with a Kickstarter budget.

The same applies to a lesser extent for licensed titles and episodic gaming. If you're going to ask the crowd for money, give us something different from what publishers are expecting.

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What struck me most about this interview is how all or most of it seems like stuff suited to pitching to publishers. Everyone's eager to replicate the successes of Skyrim, so

 

  1. It seems like Obsidian should be able to find a publisher to fund such a game.
  2. Even if they get rejected by everybody, there's not much reason for us gamers to care since we'll have plenty of choice in this genre as everyone seeks to make a Skyrim killer. The Witcher 3 in particular will probably be better than anything Obsidian attempts with a Kickstarter budget.

The same applies to a lesser extent for licensed titles and episodic gaming. If you're going to ask the crowd for money, give us something different from what publishers are expecting.

 

 

Exactly wasn't the whole point of kickstarting Eternity, Tides, and Wasteland 2 because it was something publishers had no interest in.  I think a publisher may serve Obsidian better if they want to make a massive open world game.

Edited by ArenCordial
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So the Eternity team would roll over to the new non-Eternity Kickstarter? wat ? What about the Expansion ... and the sequel ;)

 

I wondered about that too. That part didn't come with a direct quote though, so maybe its just RPS assuming.

 

No. The biggest thing will remain preproduction and most of the team is not involved in that. They can work on preproduction for the new game while the main body(all the programers and so on) work on the expansion or finishing Pillars of Eternity.

 

That's exactly what inXile is doing....it's not like Torment is on hold until they finish Wasteland 2.

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What struck me most about this interview is how all or most of it seems like stuff suited to pitching to publishers. Everyone's eager to replicate the successes of Skyrim, so

 

  1. It seems like Obsidian should be able to find a publisher to fund such a game.
  2. Even if they get rejected by everybody, there's not much reason for us gamers to care since we'll have plenty of choice in this genre as everyone seeks to make a Skyrim killer. The Witcher 3 in particular will probably be better than anything Obsidian attempts with a Kickstarter budget.

The same applies to a lesser extent for licensed titles and episodic gaming. If you're going to ask the crowd for money, give us something different from what publishers are expecting.

 

 

Exactly wasn't the whole point of kickstarting Eternity, Tides, and Wasteland 2 because it was something publishers had no interest in.  I think a publisher may serve Obsidian better if they want to make a massive open world game.

 

Not really, you're missing the point entirely, they get none of the profits if a publisher is involved and they don't own the IP. They only get paid their wages and costs to produce the game for the publisher and that's it....maybe a bonus but not always(they never got a bonus for new vegas).

 

An idea that would appeal to a larger audience is important and no, they would sure as hell not go to a publisher if they can avoid it. I'm in complete support of them getting the profits for the games they make as well as them retaining ownership of the IPs.

Edited by Darth Trethon
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What struck me most about this interview is how all or most of it seems like stuff suited to pitching to publishers. Everyone's eager to replicate the successes of Skyrim, so

 

  1. It seems like Obsidian should be able to find a publisher to fund such a game.
  2. Even if they get rejected by everybody, there's not much reason for us gamers to care since we'll have plenty of choice in this genre as everyone seeks to make a Skyrim killer. The Witcher 3 in particular will probably be better than anything Obsidian attempts with a Kickstarter budget.

The same applies to a lesser extent for licensed titles and episodic gaming. If you're going to ask the crowd for money, give us something different from what publishers are expecting.

 

 

Exactly wasn't the whole point of kickstarting Eternity, Tides, and Wasteland 2 because it was something publishers had no interest in.  I think a publisher may serve Obsidian better if they want to make a massive open world game.

 

Not really, you're missing the point entirely, they get none of the profits if a publisher is involved and they don't own the IP. They only get paid their wages and costs to produce the game for the publisher and that's it....maybe a bonus but not always(they never got a bonus for new vegas).

 

An idea that would appeal to a larger audience is important and no, they would sure as hell not go to a publisher if they can avoid it. I'm in complete support of them getting the profits for the games they make as well as them retaining ownership of the IPs.

 

 

I have nothing against them owning the IP and the profits. My point is that "Hey, we're making the same thing as everyone else, except this way we get to keep more money!" is not a great Kickstarter pitch. The trends for what works on Kickstarter are very different from what works with the wider audience. That's why you don't see many FPSs or TPSs, MMOs, mobile games, etc. on there. They're already being made without consumers having to fork up money ahead of time. If Obsidian want a game that will be successful on Kickstarter and that they can own the IP and profits of, they should leave Skyrim-type games to the publishers.

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How many people here were early adaptors of "Telltale's Walking Dead"?

Before anyone states the obvious by the way ("But walking dead is an adventure game!!!!"), an Episodic Release is not a genre, it is a formula, a solution, a business model and a marketing tool. Great for any company, and hypes fans or gamers or enthusiasts as well if successful.

I am curious because I want to know how many experienced the wait for the next episode in the game. And what they felt about it, what they talked with their friends about it and how they handled the eagerness and frustration of "I want the next episode naow!". And the most important question: Did you think it was worth the wait for the next episode?

EDIT: Isn't this in the wrong forum by the way? Obsidian General "Have a news tip, question, or comment about Obsidian Entertainment? Post it here!"

Edited by Osvir
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I have nothing against them owning the IP and the profits. My point is that "Hey, we're making the same thing as everyone else, except this way we get to keep more money!" is not a great Kickstarter pitch. The trends for what works on Kickstarter are very different from what works with the wider audience. That's why you don't see many FPSs or TPSs, MMOs, mobile games, etc. on there. They're already being made without consumers having to fork up money ahead of time. If Obsidian want a game that will be successful on Kickstarter and that they can own the IP and profits of, they should leave Skyrim-type games to the publishers.

 

Like "everyone" else? Who's everyone? What's wrong with open world games? I don't think there's anything remotely similar between New Vegas and Skyrim. Aren't you spazzing a bit early here? We literally know nothing about the game so calm down.

 

There's nothing wrong with talking popular base concepts to crowdfunding games as long as there's enough originality to them.

Edited by Darth Trethon
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Like "everyone" else? Who's everyone? What's wrong with open world games? I don't think there's anything remotely similar between New Vegas and Skyrim. Aren't you spazzing a bit early here? We literally know nothing about the game so calm down.

 

There's nothing wrong with talking popular base concepts to crowdfunding games as long as there's enough originality to them.

 

 

Well, The Witcher 3 and Dragon Age: Inquisition are the two upcoming ones off the top of my head, but http://lmgtfy.com/?q=open+world+rpgs+2014

 

Also please don't do that thing where you paint anyone who's remotely critical of something as spazzing, raving, frothing at the mouth, etc. This is just my early feedback. Their final pitch may look vastly better. If so, great! And if you like what we've heard so far, that's cool too. I merely disagree.

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Like "everyone" else? Who's everyone? What's wrong with open world games? I don't think there's anything remotely similar between New Vegas and Skyrim. Aren't you spazzing a bit early here? We literally know nothing about the game so calm down.

 

There's nothing wrong with talking popular base concepts to crowdfunding games as long as there's enough originality to them.

 

 

Well, The Witcher 3 and Dragon Age: Inquisition are the two upcoming ones off the top of my head, but http://lmgtfy.com/?q=open+world+rpgs+2014

 

Also please don't do that thing where you paint anyone who's remotely critical of something as spazzing, raving, frothing at the mouth, etc. This is just my early feedback. Their final pitch may look vastly better. If so, great! And if you like what we've heard so far, that's cool too. I merely disagree.

 

I simply see no point to heavy criticism at this point. Hell I'd argue The Witcher and Dragon Age are vastly different, the gameplay itself as well the stories are extremely different. And I'm not sure about inquisition but the other Dragon age games weren't open world. You can point to a billion shooter clones but there really isn't any of that for open world games.....they're all unique and vastly different. Look at the latest AAA open world: Assassin's Creed IV.....it's nothing like any of the others. This is true for all of them. Even Skyrim is not even close to the Dragon Age games so far.

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I simply see no point to heavy criticism at this point. Hell I'd argue The Witcher and Dragon Age are vastly different, the gameplay itself as well the stories are extremely different. And I'm not sure about inquisition but the other Dragon age games weren't open world. You can point to a billion shooter clones but there really isn't any of that for open world games.....they're all unique and vastly different. Look at the latest AAA open world: Assassin's Creed IV.....it's nothing like any of the others. This is true for all of them. Even Skyrim is not even close to the Dragon Age games so far.

 

 

Dragon Age: Inquisition is supposed to be open world, perhaps as a response to Skyrim's popularity. And sure, there's still room for variation even within the confines of open world fantasy RPGs. But it is still a niche that is being served without anyone having to pledge money for it, which makes it a less certain Kickstarter idea.

 

I think my isometric sci-fi suggestion is both safer from a fundraising and production standpoint (PoE will provide them with a tech base and show potential backers what can be accomplished for a few million dollars) yet bolder from a creative standpoint (a space opera type of sci-fi setting is hardly obscure, but how many party-based tactical RPGs of that type are we seeing?).

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If they do Skyrim, I hope it's more civil war and less dragons. In fact, I'd love more of a war concept or focus for an RPG where there aren't really correct choices, just your choices. Something like New Vegas I guess, where we ditch the supernatural and just focus on good characters. No ancient evil doodads. I think we tend to default more toward those things because invoking character drama through game mechanics is a lot harder.

 

As for episodic content... not for open world. That format works really well for linear experiences full of setpieces, but I think just opening new areas or making a world static until the next content pack might feel... weird. I'm not opposed to the idea on principle, though.

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If they do Skyrim, I hope it's more civil war and less dragons. In fact, I'd love more of a war concept or focus for an RPG where there aren't really correct choices, just your choices. Something like New Vegas I guess, where we ditch the supernatural and just focus on good characters. No ancient evil doodads. I think we tend to default more toward those things because invoking character drama through game mechanics is a lot harder.

 

As for episodic content... not for open world. That format works really well for linear experiences full of setpieces, but I think just opening new areas or making a world static until the next content pack might feel... weird. I'm not opposed to the idea on principle, though.

I like that in the first paragraph Wolfenbarg :D

 

As for Episodic Open World~ well... this is just an idea.

openworldepisodicconcept_zpsd45c3dbd.jpg

 

Episode 1, Starting Point

Episode 2, Expansion in all directions

Episode 3, Expansion in all directions

etc. etc.

 

I should really have put a map or w/e underneath it to illustrate it better but I think you get it.

 

EDIT: Here's an idea for immersion ^^ not pretty, I made it in like 2-3 minutes :p

 

FPS Concept 1: Equipping a helmet

FPS Concept 2: Checking the Inventory

FPS Concept 3: Enemy ahead

Edited by Osvir
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Have to say I'm not keen on another skyrim like game. I mean haven't we heard this all before?

 

"our new mmo is going to be better than wow!"

 

"our new open world is going to be better than skyrim!"

 

You don't beat the likes of wow or skyrim, all you can do is imitate like countless mmo's that have attempted to copy wow.

It would be much better if they came up with an idea that the market isn't currently satisfying, that way they get first mover advantage.

Did anyone know, apart from old-school pc gamers, that the infinity engine games were an untapped niche?

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