Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Shadowrun Online : Everything you need to know

"Shadowrun Online - is a cross-platform, online PC, Mac, Linux(see FAQ), iOS/iPad, Android Tablet and Ouya based tactical turn-based RPG set in the award winning world of Shadowrun. Create one account and play your game across multiple devices in whatever way you prefer!"
The aim of this article is to provide one neat and shiny place for all the information about Shadowrun Online. I will be updating this as often as I can, but I am just one guy, admittedly a kick ass guy but nevertheless just one guy so a few things may slip through my net so please feel free to point me in the direction of any new information in the comments at the bottom of this page.

Friday, 10 August 2012

Numenera - Monte Cooks New Project

If you are reading this and don't know who Monte Cook is then you must be some evil hellspawn (and even then you don't really have an excuse). Either that or your just new to the hobby, either way all you need to know is that he designs games, and he is awesome.

After leaving the D&D Next R&D group Monte started work on his latest project Numenera a Si-Fi - Fantasy RPG with a heavy focus on the story.

Monte has gone to Kickstarter to fun the project and before the first day was up he had already made double of the original goal of $20,000 and he has already released what he will do with the game when higher goals are met.

The game is described as,

"Numenera is set a billion years in the future. Civilizations have risen and fallen on Earth. Even though the current inhabitants live at about a Medieval level of technology, the leftover remnants of these advanced societies lie all around them. Some of these are extremely helpful: advanced tools, valuable means of communication and learning, transportation, defenses, and weapons. Others are dangerous: genetically altered monstrosities, flesh-warping radiation, creatures transplanted from distant stars, and clouds of out-of-control nanobots, just to name a few. This setting, called the Ninth World, provides all manner of opportunities and challenges to those that call it home."

There isn't much information about the game yet, but it's setting and promise of story driven gameplay has already got me excited about this. I will be pledging my money to it as soon as I get paid. $60 dollers will get you a hard backed full colour printed version of the corebook, plus PDF's of the Player's Guide and corebook and a character creator app, easilly worth the money in my opinion.

Or if you have a lot of money to throw around how about dropping $10,000 to have Monte Cook himself fly to your house and run a game for you.

I will be keeping up-to-date with this project and will be covering how it progesses. So far it certainly looks promising.

**UPDATE 11/08/2012**
Today Numenera achieved its first reach goal at $60,000. That's three times the original goal. Needless to say people are very excited about this game. With this goal reached Monte has said that the book will be extended from 300 to 400 pages, adding new setting material. Here is the full description:

"At $60,000, I will expand the main rulebook. I had been thinking about 300 pages, but we'll make it 400 pages. This means considerably more setting material, creatures, NPCs, and, of course, more gorgeous art.REACHED!"
**UPDATE 12/08/2012**
Funding is still going strong with another $10,000 gained and another goal reached. This time around Monte has promised to write a 32-page illustrated adventure that will be available as a PDF and print on demand. Here is the full description:
"At $70,000, I will personally write a 32-page adventure for Numenera. This will be released as a PDF and print-on-demand book, softcover, with art and maps--the whole shebang. I'll add the pdf in for free to anyone who gets THE REAL DEAL and the print adventure at all levels $180 and above."
Hopefully the funding will keep on coming and Monte and his team can come up with something truly special for us all.

**UPDATE 14/08/2012**
In just two days Numenera has gained another $20,000. Meaning another two stretch goals have been reached. Meaning Monte will be completing his trilogy of adventures to be released along side Numenera. Below are the descriptions:
"At $80,000, I'll write another 32-page adventure and distribute them into the existing reward levels as described above. REACHED!"
"At $90,000, I'll complete the trilogy of adventures and do the same. Just to be clear, this means that everyone ALREADY getting the THE REAL DEAL will get a 96 pages of adventure for no extra charge. The same is true for people selecting THE ULTIMATE EBOOK FAN level. Those contributing $180 or more will get them as print adventures.  REACHED!"
There are only two more stretch goals to go now, but with over a month left more may be needed if the this enthusiasm keeps up. 

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Shadowrun Online - Will it happen?

Some of you may have heard of a little game called Shadowrun. If not, you are truly missing out. It mixes Fantasy with Sci-Fi with amazing results. A popular pen and paper RPG for over 20 years, it has had a few forays into the realm of video games with mixed results. Recently Jordan Weisman, credited as one of the creators of Shadowrun way back in 1989 started a project on Kickstarter called, 'Shadowrun Returns' and it was a huge success, getting over 4 times it's original goal. Following this success Weiseman is trying Kickstarter again. This time to fund 'Shadowrun Online'.

If you are a fan of Shadowrun chances are you have already heard of this project and hopefully you are excited about it. Excited enough to pledge some money. The game is described as

"a cross-platform, online PC, Mac, Linux(see FAQ), iOS/iPad, Android Tablet and Ouya based game, with deep, rich story, sleuthing intel called "legwork", tactical single playerco-op, and player vs. player role-playing action, plus large in-game community hubs, all set in the unique and persistent world of Shadowrun."

It will feature a free-to-play, no money upfront game using micro-transactions and a premium subscription service, plus an optional one off payment for access to a 'Campaign Server' where all in-game items are free and no extra costs. 

It certain seems like they are trying to cater for everyone here. Personally I think this is a great idea, free-to-play seems to be the way to go today if you want to reach a wide audience, but there is a lot of stigma surrounding this pricing model and free-to-play micro-transaction ridden games can often be ignored by gamers. So offering a more tradional option as well is a great move.

You can check out the prototype footage for the game below.

Well I've got to say, this game looks pretty awesome. In fact I'm so excited about it I actually pledged money on Kickstarter for the very first time to help get this project made. The problem is though, it only has (at the time of writing this) 10 days to go and it hasn't reached the half way point yet. As each day goes by it is looking more and more likely that Shadowrun Online won't be funded. This of course doesn't mean the game will never be made, they have clearly made a good start on it already. But it will certainly delay the project for a good while. If your love Shadowrun or just want to play a new, interesting game set in a rich setting then consider pledging some money. I would happily thank every single pledge if the game is funded and that isn't enough for you, how about some cake?

Find out everything about Shadowrun Online right here.

Check out my review of the Shadowrun: Runners Toolkit