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Preview New Bard's Tale revealed

Saint_Proverbius

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Tags: Bard's Tale (2005); InXile Entertainment

<a href="http://www.gamespy.com/">GameSpy</a> serves up a <a href="http://www.gamespy.com/previews/september03/bardstalemulti/index.shtml">preview</a> of <b>Brian Fargo</b>'s new company's first title:
<br>
<br>
<blockquote>The game, which is using an improved version of the <i>Baldur's Gate Dark Alliance engine</i> (the one now being used in <i>EverQuest: Champions of Norrath</i>), is being developed <u>primarily for the PS2</u>, although a PC version is also in the works. "Console RPGs are too linear, Fargo said. "We plan for the game to be so involved that it will be physically impossible to see and do everything if you play through only one time."</blockquote>
<br>
<br>
Oh boy, decades of waiting and Bard's Tale fans get a console port! Won't they be thrilled!
<br>
<br>
Thanks to <b>Jiles</b> for the head's up.
 

Diogo Ribeiro

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Fargo said:
"Console RPGs are too linear, Fargo said. "We plan for the game to be so involved that it will be physically impossible to see and do everything if you play through only one time."

Not to be a spoisport, but old-school CRPG games for consoles don't sell. Did the console Wizardry even sell?

And while i admire the idea of having that kind of complex, replayable game, that's a turn off for many console games. I understand the idea of developing for consoles, but somethings cannot break the mold just like that. Specially not a revamped Bard's Tale, methinks.
 

Zetor

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Actually [from what I've read], the Wizardry games sold more units on consoles than on the PC. They're extremely popular in Japan [some of the episodes never made it to the West!]... in fact, the Dragon Warrior series can be considered a Wizardry spin-off.
Also, the 'oldskool' Wizardries are much more popular over there; Wiz7 / 8, while they had respectable sales in Japan, were outsold by the PS2 game "Wizardry: Tale of the Forsaken Land".

ymmv,

-- Z.
 

ecliptic

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Wizardry for PS2 was fairly fun. An odd twist on the dungeon crawl.

As for Bard's Tale going Dark Alliance engine... . . . . uhh, bleh.
 

Psilon

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Hmm... can't seem to get the article from the servers. Somehow I'm not surprised.

Oh, and did anyone else read that URL as "Bard Stale Multi?"
 

Diogo Ribeiro

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Zetor said:
Actually [from what I've read], the Wizardry games sold more units on consoles than on the PC. They're extremely popular in Japan [some of the episodes never made it to the West!]... in fact, the Dragon Warrior series can be considered a Wizardry spin-off.
Also, the 'oldskool' Wizardries are much more popular over there; Wiz7 / 8, while they had respectable sales in Japan, were outsold by the PS2 game "Wizardry: Tale of the Forsaken Land".

ymmv,

-- Z.

Weren't those high-selling units the compilation of titles, like Wizardry: Legend of Llylgaman (sp?) for the SNES, and somesuch?

I've yet to play the PS2 Forsaken Land.
 

EEVIAC

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Role-Player said:
And while I admire the idea of having that kind of complex, replayable game, that's a turn off for many console games.

Add spiky-haired, angsty teens and it'll sell.
 

Psilon

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Hopefully if they do so it'll be spiky-haired, angsty teens remaining spiky-haired, angsty teens rather than the whole romance-while-saving-the-world crap.

"The dialogue system is set up so players can answer questions in only two ways, friendly or snarky." Uh-oh...
 

Diogo Ribeiro

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Im assuming its Bioware style, with excellent roleplaying abilities such as deciding "Yes" or "No", or the groundbreaking "I'll do it for free" or "Give me money up front."
 

Voss

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Wow. That preview makes for an...interesting... read.

I get the impression Brian doesn't remember the original game at all.
This was a party based game, once upon a time.
And someone needs to be bitch slapped for the bard with amnesia concept.

As for some of the big decisions- thats an fairly impressive string of bad ones.

Lets dig up a classic PC game... and make it a console game.
And not party based anymore. Summoned monsters instead. Huzzah.

A cynical and bitter hero...witty, but you've got to wonder what keeps him going. Motivation, anyone?

Best, lets use an existing engine thats associated with another franchise...

so those spiky haired teenagers (that the game supposedly won't be written for) will say:
"Dude, you gonna pick up that BG clone?"
"Nah, it looks like its gonna suck balls."

And I assume they're throwing in the horrible camera from BG:DA for free. Its a bonus feature, really.

Edit: Oh lets not forget that Skara Brae is generally associated with another old game series...

Is this really the best he could do?
 

Vault Dweller

Commissar, Red Star Studio
Developer
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Finally read the preview.

If he runs into a princess in a tower, he'll comment 'why is there never anyone held at ground level any more?'
It then tells about the idiot who conjured the creature. About that time, the camera zooms in to the Bard's face as he realizes they are singing about him.
They were about to give up when the Bard, who was trying to help the town, accidently loosed a dragon, who knocked the walls of the town down, allowing the Vikings to come in and take it over
So, is it a game or the Simpsons Halloween Special? Fat and bold bard might be a good alternative to spike-haired angsty teens :lol:

The game will still revolve around the Bard, except this time the Bard is a cynical smartass who only cares about coin and cleavage. "He's not the type to steal from you, but he will definitely try to trick you out of your money," Fargo said.
Compare this to ...

Lady: We at the network want a dog with attitude. He's edgy, he's "in your face." You've heard the expression "let's get busy"? Well, this is a dog who gets "biz-zay!" Consistently and thoroughly.
Krusty: So he's proactive, huh?
Lady: Oh, God, yes. We're talking about a totally outrageous paradigm.
....
Myers: No, no, no! He was supposed to have attitude.
Silverman: Um... wh-what do you mean, exactly?
Myers: Oh, you know, attitude, attitude! Uh... sunglasses!
Lady: Could we put him in more of a "hip-hop" context?
Krusty: Forget context, he's gotta be a surfer. Give me a nice shmear of surfer.
Lady: I feel we should Rasta-fy him by... 10 percent or so.
Myers: Hmm... I think he needs a little more attitude.
[Silverman blackens in Poochie's sunglasses]
All Three: [variously] Oh, yeah, bingo. Yeah, that's it! There it is, right there! I love it!
lol
 

Diogo Ribeiro

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The game will still revolve around the Bard, except this time the Bard is a cynical smartass who only cares about coin and cleavage.

At least when compared to the other "i hate girls and people, i don't notice her looks and her obvios 38DD cleavage" types of console game heroes, he's honest :wink:
 

BrianF

inXile Entertainment
Developer
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The new Bard's Tale...

I felt the need to comment after reading some of the concerns on the board here. I've produced quite a number of RPG's in the past and there is no reason why a great RPG cannot exist on console also. A great RPG is molded from great writing, depth, strategy of gameplay, characters, multiple solutions, tone etc etc not from having a keyboard. Witness the success of KOTOR on the Xbox. I think Bioware did an excellent job of bringing the depth of a great RPG to console and my guess is that PC owners will like that game also when it comes to PC. The new Bard's Tale is a very fresh approach and the old school RPG's will get a kick out of it. I hope you can keep an objective attitude so that the game can be played for what it is. I remember taking similar criticism when we announced that Wasteland would be a top down perspective when people were expecting a Bard's Tale perspective. But in the end we created something totally original. I'm certain the same will happen here.

Brian Fargo
 

Vault Dweller

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We have a new member BrianF. As Killian Darkwater would have said "It's a damn fine coincidence" :)

Edit: Oops, you just introduced yourself. Hi, Brian

BrianF said:
I'm certain the same will happen here.
If you say so. Console games have been traditionally dumbed down, that's a fact. Morrowind suffered from dual development (comparing to Daggerfall). I am not saying that what you described couldn't be done, but I'm sceptical about it. I haven't play KotOR though, so I'm unable to comment on that. Anyway, good luck and thanks for dropping by, I hope you will stick around and discuss with us your progress every now and then.
 

Azael

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Wasteland 2
Re: The new Bard's Tale...

BrianF said:
I felt the need to comment after reading some of the concerns on the board here. I've produced quite a number of RPG's in the past and there is no reason why a great RPG cannot exist on console also. A great RPG is molded from great writing, depth, strategy of gameplay, characters, multiple solutions, tone etc etc not from having a keyboard. Witness the success of KOTOR on the Xbox. I think Bioware did an excellent job of bringing the depth of a great RPG to console and my guess is that PC owners will like that game also when it comes to PC. The new Bard's Tale is a very fresh approach and the old school RPG's will get a kick out of it. I hope you can keep an objective attitude so that the game can be played for what it is. I remember taking similar criticism when we announced that Wasteland would be a top down perspective when people were expecting a Bard's Tale perspective. But in the end we created something totally original. I'm certain the same will happen here.

Brian Fargo

First of all, hi and welcome to the boards

Now, speaking of Wasteland, any plans to revive this license as well?
 

Vault Dweller

Commissar, Red Star Studio
Developer
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This is from the features:
Spins the DVD at over 10,000 RPM!
Over $500 in value
Graphics so amazing you'll need a screen! :lol:
So powerful, it won't even run on the PlayStation 1

The sexual harassment thing is pretty funny too :)
 

Diogo Ribeiro

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Re: The new Bard's Tale...

BrianF said:
I felt the need to comment after reading some of the concerns on the board here. I've produced quite a number of RPG's in the past and there is no reason why a great RPG cannot exist on console also.

Welcome to the boards :D

As for the comment, that is very possible in theory. However it should be noted that an RPG is non-existant in a console.

A great RPG is molded from great writing, depth, strategy of gameplay, characters, multiple solutions, tone etc etc not from having a keyboard.

Very much the truth.

Witness the success of KOTOR on the Xbox.

I believe KoTOR is a contradiction of sorts. First, because Bioware's games do not focus on roleplaying as much as it is claimed. Second, many console gamers writhe away from CRPGs for the exact qualities that make an RPG, an RPG. Third, despite them doing that, they now greatly accept Bioware's KoTOR and Morrowind for things they criticized in the past. Now, is this because of KoTOR, or is it because many console gamers are having the typical console linearity catching up to them? It could be both.

Personally, I can't vouch for nor condemn KoTOR as i haven't played it, but from what i gathered from several people, the making of a great RPG is not present in KoTOR, as it follows the standard Biowarian set of forced story-telling and bland and unimaginative quests.

I think Bioware did an excellent job of bringing the depth of a great RPG to console and my guess is that PC owners will like that game also when it comes to PC.

Well, if anything, they certainly created a game that, when compared to the majority of console RPGs, actually has choices as to how handle obstacles. Wheter this will be good or bad in the long run, we'll see.

The new Bard's Tale is a very fresh approach and the old school RPG's will get a kick out of it.

Here's hoping it is true :wink:

I hope you can keep an objective attitude so that the game can be played for what it is. I remember taking similar criticism when we announced that Wasteland would be a top down perspective when people were expecting a Bard's Tale perspective. But in the end we created something totally original. I'm certain the same will happen here.

Wishing you the best, then 8)

And i make Azael's question as well, are there any future plans involving Wasteland?
 

Saint_Proverbius

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Re: The new Bard's Tale...

BrianF said:
I felt the need to comment after reading some of the concerns on the board here. I've produced quite a number of RPG's in the past and there is no reason why a great RPG cannot exist on console also. A great RPG is molded from great writing, depth, strategy of gameplay, characters, multiple solutions, tone etc etc not from having a keyboard.

I can think of a lot of reasons they can't exist on the console. The controller for one makes an interface rather difficult. Let's face it, you're going from a 101-key keyboard/two button+scroll wheel mouse down to an eight button, eight direction joystick. That pretty much makes a lot of things that are easy to do with an interface rather difficult. Imagine something like Fallout or Temple of Elemental Evil, games with a huge amount of combat options, using a standard console controller. Gosh, now that'd suck.

Another fun problem is the save game format. The PS2 has about 8MBs of storage space on it's little cards, doesn't it? Most CRPGs with any sort of depth have save game files of around a half a meg all the way up through 20MB or so these days. How persistant of an environment can you make when you're only limited to 8MB?

Witness the success of KOTOR on the Xbox. I think Bioware did an excellent job of bringing the depth of a great RPG to console and my guess is that PC owners will like that game also when it comes to PC.

I'm sure KotOR will get good reviews from the mainstream. BioWare games always do, no matter how awful and shallow they are.

The new Bard's Tale is a very fresh approach and the old school RPG's will get a kick out of it. I hope you can keep an objective attitude so that the game can be played for what it is.

Objective is a double edged sword. I mean, you don't really want people to be objective about this, do you? That's why you licensed back the name Bard's Tale, because you want people to remember the name from the older games, think back to their fond memories of the title, and buy it. Right? Isn't that the point?

I remember taking similar criticism when we announced that Wasteland would be a top down perspective when people were expecting a Bard's Tale perspective. But in the end we created something totally original. I'm certain the same will happen here.

Totally different situation. Wasteland was an all new enterprise, and top down had been done successfully in many other titles.

That said, please don't do this to Wasteland.
 

triCritical

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Re: The new Bard's Tale...

BrianF said:
I remember taking similar criticism when we announced that Wasteland would be a top down perspective when people were expecting a Bard's Tale perspective. But in the end we created something totally original. I'm certain the same will happen here.

Brian Fargo

Well then can you elaborate on how this will be totally original. Because it looks entirely played, no pun intended. I posted on the IPLY forums that it is hard to imagine a bard's tale game without a party, which in todays market would be more original then another single person action game. Again, I don't think I have ever criticized you for choosing to make this kind of game, its just does not sound like a good business decision.

Bard's Tale fans most likely will have no interest in a game with similar mechanics to BGDA.
And people who enjoy the game probably will not even know what a Bard's Tale is, not to mention it doesn't sound very l33t.

Unless you got the license for free it seems to me it would have been more original to do something original, kind of like Wasteland, which is one of the reasons I bought a computer in the first place, just don't tell my mom. :wink:

BTW, you name will forever be coupled with one of my nostalgic moments,

Code:
BRIAN FARGO

PRESENTS

                                         FALLOUT

Thought you should know that.
 

Briosafreak

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From: Brian Fargo
Date: Sat Sep 13, 2003 2:02 am
Subject: Hello all

I am not an imposter but the real Brian Fargo who
produced Wasteland amongst other things. I joined this
group so I could see what issues you all deemed
important as I gather my thoughts about the next game.
It's great to see such a loyal group of followers for
a game that shipped so long ago.

Quote:
From: Brian Fargo
Date: Sat Sep 13, 2003 4:58 am
Subject: Re: [Squeezins] dear Faran Brygo

That would be unlikely since I don't have rights to
the material and our resources are limited. Meantime
was a game about time travel and not a sequel to
Wasteland in any case and I'm much more interested in
post nuclear material.

Quote:
From: Brian Fargo
Date: Sat Sep 13, 2003 5:01 am
Subject: Re: [Squeezins] Hello all

that's great material and I'm in agreement with
cliches and the depth that is required. It is a big
focus for me. We are also doing a Bard's Tale and I've
always felt that it is the individual experiences
along the way that make things interesting not the
"save the world" plot.

Quote:
From: Brian Fargo
Date: Sat Sep 13, 2003 5:18 am
Subject: Re: [Squeezins] Hello all

Yes we have acquired the rights to Wasteland but it
has not been officially announced. Due to the
trademark offices it became public knowledge which is
why I'm willing to discuss it at all. Although I would
like to have some candid (not public) conversations
with you guys on this forum so I can make it a better
game.

Quote:
From: Brian Fargo
Date: Tue Sep 16, 2003 6:16 am
Subject: Misc. questions

I've received numerous questions from different people
on this forum so I'll use this email to answer some of
these. I won't always get the chance to answer all
questions since I am managing a business and there are
too many questions to answer on an ongoing basis. But
I will continue to monitor this board to help heighten
my sensibilities.

Someone asked why I didn't consider Wasteland sooner:
I wanted to do Wasteland sooner but unfortunately EA
would not let the trademark go even though they had no
intention of using it themselves. But fortunately for
trademark law you cannot sit on trademarks
indefinitely without using them. So the mark expired
and then Konami grabbed it for their Yu-Gi-Oh series.
And fortunately again, the people at Konami were
friendly and decided they were not going to use the
mark so they let me get it back.

I'm still forming my thoughts on the new Wasteland but
you will be happy to know that it will be very much an
old school RPG that uses the skill systems, open ended
nature of design, and puts the player into a world
that is not black and white but shades of grey. This
Wasteland will be darker in nature in the first one...
the Rangers are pessimistic about humanity at this
point.

And don't worry, there will be no compromise in the
single player experience to accomodate multi-player.
The single player experience is what makes for a
really rich world.

I have no ETA for the game yet... the design is just
kicking off.

Right now I'm enjoying playing the game over from
scratch making note of all the characters and
situations I want to see again.

I've read some really useful things out here from
people who have articulated as to why they loved WL so
much. I'm in alignment with 95% of what I've read.
Post apocalyptic material is my favorite, I love the
dark and bleak world to work with.

Thanks for all the input.....

Brian Fargo

To Brian Fargo: Is this really you on the yahoo group?
 

BrianF

inXile Entertainment
Developer
Joined
Sep 30, 2003
Messages
3
more on BT...

I would be happy to continue to discuss future progress on the game and I will make sure I check this forum from time to time.

And I'm glad people are finding the little touches on the website, be sure and click on the poster near the guard.

As for Wasteland, I can't give much commentary on it yet but it would be a totally different treatment than what we are doing with BT. Wasteland is a heavier subject matter with a more intense system behind it.

To answer a few of the comments from above:
The originality will come from a number of things. The main character has a self aware nature and treats the gameplay as if he has played too many RPG's himself. The situations and dialogue are quite unique. Our use of music, humor, twisting of the cliches and summoning of monster types amongst other things will give a feel that is different. We are trying hard to make this game have a soul.

And while the game starts with a single player, we have instead used the concept of summoning to fill out your party. So there will be a party based adventure, it is being done in a different way. Although one particular creature joins your group and grows up during gameplay.

In the same way the Batman created by Dark Horse comics is much different than the Batman we grew up with. We have fleshed out the Bard and his musical abilities to something that is different.

I hope this sheds some more light on our thinking.

Brian Fargo
 

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