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Shadowrun Returns Kickstarter Update #68: Released on GOG + Dragonfall Interview with Mitch Gitelman

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Shadowrun Returns Kickstarter Update #68: Released on GOG + Dragonfall Interview with Mitch Gitelman

Game News - posted by Infinitron on Tue 10 December 2013, 16:58:18

Tags: Harebrained Schemes; Mitch Gitelman; Shadowrun Returns; Shadowrun: Dragonfall

Having finally gotten rid of the DRM requirements in their licensing agreement, Harebrained Schemes have fulfilled their promise and released Shadowrun Returns on GOG, DRM-free. It's available at a 40% discount until Thursday, though to be honest, even at that price, it might be worth waiting for the Dragonfall expansion to be released next month so you can get them together for $25. The game's latest Kickstarter update has further information:

HBS is happy to announce that as of today, Shadowrun Returns is now available for Windows and Mac on GOG.com!

And please let all your friends know they can purchase the game at the special release price of $11.99 through tomorrow, 12/11/2013. Here’s the link: http://www.gog.com/game/shadowrun_returns

The DRM-free version of the game will continue to be fully supported and you'll be able to download all game patches, use the Shadowrun Returns editor and experience user-generated content downloaded from third-party sites such as Nexus. If you are a Kickstarter Backer or pre-ordered the game, we are happy to send you a GOG key if you contact us at info@hbs-studios.com.

We are also pleased to let our Linux-loving fans know that they’ll soon be able to access the game through the Humble Store. We’ll let you know about it as soon as possible.

Shadowrun: Dragonfall, the expansion for Shadowrun Returns, will also be available on GOG and the Humble Store when it’s released in January.​

Speaking of Dragonfall, Game Informer interviewed HBS producer Mitch Gitelman about it last week. Here's an excerpt:

Shadowrun Returns has been out for a few months now, and you’ve probably had the chance to get some feedback on how the game was received. What criticisms and praise have you taken to heart, and how will that be reflected in the new Berlin project?

We’re pretty passionate about our jobs and tend to take everything to heart: the good and the bad. Shadowrun: Dragonfall reflects quite a bit of feedback we received since the launch of Shadowrun Returns.

First and most important, Dragonfall has a more flexible story structure than the original Dead Man’s Switch campaign. Players will have the ability to choose which runs to complete first and a larger assortment of side missions to select from. In addition, you can complete optional objectives for factions in the story with their own agendas.

We felt that the Seamstresses Union location in the Seattle campaign provided an effective base-of-operations for the player, but it also wound up feeling restrained and a bit claustrophobic. In Dragonfall, we're providing the player a full Berlin kiez, or neighborhood, to operate out of. You'll be able to explore and interact with a variety of residents and merchants in the area, head to the street doc's office for some new chrome, or retreat to your hidden safehouse to plan your next move.

To support the new structure of the Berlin campaign, and in reaction to audience feedback, we’ve expanded the save game functionality to allow you to save your game at any time.

One of the things we really enjoy in RPGs is interacting with a team of interesting, nuanced characters throughout the campaign. This was something we didn't get to do as much as we wanted to in Dead Man Switch, though we were happy with where we were able to take a couple of characters, such as the bartender & aspiring shadowrunner, Coyote. In Dragonfall, we're introducing a full team of runners with their own backstories and motivations that players can get to know and choose for specific runs, rather than hiring random mercenaries who feel disposable. Each of the characters has a unique set of skills, abilities, and equipment and is designed to play a role on the team.

Overall, we received the highest praise for the look, the writing, and the tone of Seattle, which many players told us was what they’d always seen in their heads. With Dragonfall, our goal is to make Berlin feel like a new and distinctly European location with its own vibe, yet clearly set in the world of Shadowrun and consistent with the themes of the Berlin tabletop RPG sourcebook. To that end, Dragonfall features new environment art, a large new cast of characters, and a new soundtrack.

And, of course, we can’t ship an expansion for a tactical RPG without some new weapons like a sniper rifle, a grenade launcher, or a stun-inducing taser.

Beyond what we talked about above, what gameplay and technical features are changing in the new game?

In addition to the new story campaign and enhanced saved games functionality, Shadowrun: Dragonfall features enhancements and improvements to several character archetypes, new outfits, new character portraits, and new enemies - including new magical creatures. Plus, Dragonfall expands on and extends our game editor feature set, based upon feedback from the user-generated-content community, which allows for a host of new options for designers. These features appear in the Berlin campaign, and while they sound like relatively humble improvements, in a clever designer’s hands, they can have a powerful impact on the play experience - things like being able to keep track of objectives in the main game UI, exploding barrels, and the ability to enter keycodes and custom text strings in conversation.

What can you tell us about the storyline of the Berlin scenario? Who do you play? Who are some of the characters you meet? What sets it apart from the Dead Man’s Switch campaign?

Storywise, the Berlin campaign should provide a very different experience from the Seattle campaign. Where Dead Man’s Switch embroiled you in a noir-like mystery - a lone runner with a job to do - Dragonfall places you at the head a team of runners caught in a dangerous plot, and struggling to stay alive in a European city rife with conspiracy and intrigue. You’ll take jobs running against ruthless megacorporations, furthering the goals of shadowy factions with their own agendas, and coming face-to-face with some of the deadliest opponents the Shadowrun setting has to offer.

Forty-two years ago, the Great Dragon Feuerschwinge was shot down over the SOX, an irradiated wasteland between Germany and France. This event - the Dragonfall - has been all but forgotten by the world at large. But now, the people of Berlin are about to receive a grim reminder of the past, and with it, one of the greatest threats of the Awakened world.
Nothing new here, really, but let's hope it turns out as good as it sounds.

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