Putting the 'role' back in role-playing games since 2002.
Donate to Codex
Good Old Games
  • Welcome to rpgcodex.net, a site dedicated to discussing computer based role-playing games in a free and open fashion. We're less strict than other forums, but please refer to the rules.

    "This message is awaiting moderator approval": All new users must pass through our moderation queue before they will be able to post normally. Until your account has "passed" your posts will only be visible to yourself (and moderators) until they are approved. Give us a week to get around to approving / deleting / ignoring your mundane opinion on crap before hassling us about it. Once you have passed the moderation period (think of it as a test), you will be able to post normally, just like all the other retards.

Editorial Tom's Guide on the Rise and Fall of D&D RPGs, with commentary by Feargus Urquhart and Chris Avellone

Infinitron

I post news
Staff Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2011
Messages
97,369
Codex Year of the Donut Serpent in the Staglands Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker Pathfinder: Wrath I'm very into cock and ball torture I helped put crap in Monomyth
Tags: Baldur's Gate; Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn; BioWare; Black Isle Studios; Chris Avellone; Dungeons & Dragons; Feargus Urquhart; Icewind Dale; Icewind Dale 2; Neverwinter Nights; Neverwinter Nights 2; Obsidian Entertainment; Planescape: Torment

Over at Tom's Guide, there's a short editorial on the history of the Dungeons & Dragons CRPGs of the late 90s and early 2000s. There's nothing really new here for connoisseurs of the genre, but it does include some choice commentary from Feargus Urquhart and Chris Avellone. Here's an excerpt:

Classic high-fantasy RPGs on the PC are a rare commodity these days — at least from major studios. Skyrocketing production costs appear to be the major culprit. Making a gripping RPG is not as cheap as it used to be.

"What happened in the early 2000s?" Urquhart asked. "We were in this golden era of PC RPGs, and then it went somewhere. Consoles were taking over; there was no funding for PC. That happened at a lot of publishers."

It was one thing to give your character hundreds of customization options and ways to influence the story when all you had to do was recolor armor graphics and write additional dialogue. But when each new item requires a team of 3D designers working overtime and every line in the game needs a seasoned voice actor, designing a linear first-person shooter is much easier than designing a true, sprawling RPG.

"As games got more expensive, choices got more expensive. Games have just gotten more and more linear, where there's less options for the player," Urquhart said. "It's become an amazing movie you're playing."

The D&D RPGs from Black Isle, BioWare and Obsidian never felt cinematic or fast-paced; they opted instead to be immersive and engrossing. From their smart, tactical gameplay to their dramatic narratives full of memorable characters, the D&D RPGs represented something gamers had never seen before and have hardly seen since: Role-playing adventures that combined deep gameplay systems with accessible interfaces, attractive graphics, sweeping scores, gripping stories and clever scripts.

[...] Taken together, the D&D games from BioWare, Black Isle and Obsidian form a massive, loosely connected series. "Baldur's Gate," "Icewind Dale" and "Neverwinter Nights" all take place in a specialized D&D setting known as "Forgotten Realms."

This fan-favorite locale has everything a discerning adventurer needs for an heroic tale: roving wizards, enchanted weapons, warring political factions and a huge world with frozen mountains, lush jungles and everything in-between.

"It's the natural setting for high fantasy," Avellone said. The only exception, he said, was "Planescape: Torment," which lets players journey through multiple dimensions that house strange and otherworldly creatures.

"We put conscious connections between the titles," Avellone said. Perhaps the most common narrative device in the series is the eternal Blood War between the evil creatures known as the tanar'ri (demons) and baatezu (devils). Sooner or later, every player of every game finds him or herself between the two combatants.

"The Blood War does not tie the games together," Avellone said, but rather reflects the theme of each game. "In 'Planescape: Torment,' the intention was to reference an eternal conflict that has no end in sight." This mirrors the inner journey of the Nameless One, that game's main character.

"It's the never-ending struggle: the picture of that warrior going off to fight forever," said Urquhart.

Obsidian is currently hard at work on "Project Eternity" (launching in Spring 2014) and the delightfully vulgar "South Park: The Stick of Truth" (December 10, 2013), but it has not worked on a D&D-branded game in half-a-decade. Still, if the stars all align, gamers could see a D&D title from the veterans at Obsidian in the future.

"We constantly talk to people about doing a game like that," Urquhart said. "Our real hope is that D&D can get used for these story- and character-driven games because that's what people really enjoy … [PC RPGs aren't] dead as long as people want to play them."
The Codex, of course, does not approve of the author's wanton dismissal of pre-Baldur's Gate D&D CRPGs.
 

mindx2

Codex Roaming East Coast Reporter
Patron
Joined
Feb 22, 2006
Messages
4,408
Location
Perusing his PC Museum shelves.
Codex 2012 PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire RPG Wokedex Serpent in the Staglands Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 BattleTech Pathfinder: Wrath I'm very into cock and ball torture I helped put crap in Monomyth
This picture just takes a dump all over cRPG history!!
obsidian,V-5-402881-3.jpg



:rpgcodex:
 
Self-Ejected

Excidium

P. banal
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
13,696
Location
Third World
A whole lot of ignorance, Obsidian self-promotion and some crap about romance sum up this article about D&D CRPGs.
 

DeepOcean

Arcane
Joined
Nov 8, 2012
Messages
7,394
The article starts by mentioning Mass Effect as if it was a RPG, so anything that comes afterward is automatically dumbfuck material.
 

As an Amazon Associate, rpgcodex.net earns from qualifying purchases.
Back
Top Bottom