July 22 – July 26

Two games that I love dearly, and would probably have somewhere among the ranks of my favorite games of all time are Fallout Tactics and Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magic. These games come from a period in gaming history that was in many ways typified by deep, turn-based RPG models. Both quintessential PC games and both a strong blend of RPG and turn-based tactical combat, they both exist in a genre that, like great space simulators, seems to have faded into irrelevance and obscurity. This is tragic to me.

Which is why my eyes turn hopefully toward Shadowrun Returns from this week's release list. The last time Shadowrun got the videogame treatment, the result was a mostly disappointing effort from FASA that was more notable for its Games For Windows and cross-system play than anything having to do with the actual game. A first-person shooter, multiplayer-only Counter-Strike cash-in that quickly faded into obscurity, the less said about 2007's Shadowrun the better.

Shadowrun Returns, however, is a Kickstarter-funded RPG that immediately harkens back in my mind to games like Arcanum and Fallout. Based on the long-established Shadowrun pen-and-paper RPG, Shadowrun Returns looks lovingly dense with the deep RPG elements and strategic gameplay that this kind of franchise deserves. Along with other similarly crowd-funded games like Torment, Project Eternity and Wasteland 2, I am anxiously hoping that these games deliver on their promises, just so we can see more of these kinds of projects.

PC
- Citadels (download)
- Expander (download)
- Shadowrun Returns (download)
- Teleglitch: Die More Edition (download)
- The Raven - Legacy of a Master Thief (download)

Xbox 360
- Mars: War Logs (XBLA)
- The Smurfs 2
- Vintage Hero (XBLIG)

PS3
- Do Not Fall (PSN)
- Hot Shots Golf: World Invitational (PSN)
- Stealth Inc: A Clone in the Dark (PSN)
- The Smurfs 2
- Zeno Clash II (PSN)

Wii U
- Kid Icarus (Virtual Console)
- The Smurfs 2

Wii
- The Smurfs 2

Vita
- Stealth Inc: A Clone in the Dark (PSN)

3DS
- Picross E2 (eShop)

DS
- The Smurfs 2

Comments

Hmmm...will check it out. If it's anything like the Genesis Shadowrun, I'll be all over it.

Glad I'd already pre-purchased it ages ago, otherwise I'd feel really guilty about buying it after the Steam sale debauchery of the last couple of weeks

The Raven is also supposed to be pretty good as well, according to RPS.

Definitely interested in seeing how Shadowrun turns out, but it's certainly landing in my pile any time soon

Keithustus wrote:

Hmmm...will check it out. If it's anything like the Genesis Shadowrun, I'll be all over it.

Following along since the Kickstarter, I'd liken it more to Neverwinter Nights meets Shadowrun. There's a full-on level editor that is available, with the hope that the community will create their own modules to add to the existing campaign from Harebrained.

I'm super excited, and can't wait for the 25th.

I've got good memories of the shadowrun FPS. It's where I first played multiplayer games with a lot of the GWJ contingent at the time. I'm looking forward to the RPG though, and have an idea kicking around for a campaign of my own in the level builder.

Minarchist wrote:

An easy GOTY so far, and I played some great games in the first half of the year.

I expect there to be blood in the GOTY thread this year. It's going to be great.

shoptroll wrote:
Minarchist wrote:

An easy GOTY so far, and I played some great games in the first half of the year.

I expect there to be blood in the GOTY thread this year. It's going to be great.

People are playing something other than Animal Crossing? With what time? And couldn't that time be spent earning bells?

Stylez wrote:

I've got good memories of the shadowrun FPS. It's where I first played multiplayer games with a lot of the GWJ contingent at the time. I'm looking forward to the RPG though, and have an idea kicking around for a campaign of my own in the level builder.

Agreed, It get's a lot of hate, but I remember it being pretty fun to play with various members of GWJ...

Just what I needed in the wake of all these Steam gifts: my Kickstarter code for Shadowrun!

Yes, after several gift giving to others and even myself over the past week, Shadowrun will simply have to wait for a bit before joining the fold.

Here's to hoping that Shadowrun gets the love in video games it so justly deserves. I personally am no longer the fan of turn-based top-down games that I once was. But back in the day I did love me some Fallout and Arcanum.

On it like stink on a monkey!

OMG no links.. do I have to actually google something?

Shadowrun Returns all the way, baby!

As a backer, I got my Shadowrun Returns Steam key emailed to me a week ago. I'm taking off work this Friday to dive into it.

HantaXP wrote:
Stylez wrote:

I've got good memories of the shadowrun FPS. It's where I first played multiplayer games with a lot of the GWJ contingent at the time. I'm looking forward to the RPG though, and have an idea kicking around for a campaign of my own in the level builder.

Agreed, It get's a lot of hate, but I remember it being pretty fun to play with various members of GWJ...

It was! Shadowrun was a fun console FPS and the cross-platform play was actually done well. It was one of those games that I knew wasn't getting traction with the greater public as I was playing it, but could not figure out why.

Minarchist wrote:

That orphan line at the end of the first paragraph makes the layout guy in my wince. >:-(

In your wince? Ouch.

Yeah this is Steam pile week!

That orphan line at the end of the first paragraph makes the layout guy in me wince. >:-(

I will stick with last weeks' GOTW, Shin Megami Tensei IV. Because man, it's good. It's really good. Better than I expected it to be, even. An easy GOTY so far, and I played some great games in the first half of the year.

ClockworkHouse wrote:
Minarchist wrote:

That orphan line at the end of the first paragraph makes the layout guy in my wince. >:-(

In your wince? Ouch.

No idea what you're talking about.

Minarchist wrote:

That orphan line at the end of the first paragraph makes the layout guy in me wince. >:-(

I will stick with last weeks' GOTW, Shin Megami Tensei IV. Because man, it's good. It's really good. Better than I expected it to be, even. An easy GOTY so far, and I played some great games in the first half of the year.

You do layout? Publications? Newspapers? Wrong thread to ask these questions?

(Just curious - I've done newspaper article/photo layout for seven years)

I am way too fascinated with the idea that they decided to release 'The Smurfs 2" for the DS, but not the 3DS. "3DS? Hell no, that's way too up-market for Smurfs 2!"

If you'll excuse me, I'm going to go roll around in my pile of Shadowrun sourcebooks and play 'Daydream Believer' on loop for the next six hours.

wordsmythe wrote:

Just what I needed in the wake of all these Steam gifts: my Kickstarter code for Shadowrun!

Tell me more.

Minarchist wrote:

That orphan line at the end of the first paragraph makes the layout guy in my wince. >:-(

You want to fight with Drupal? I think we've got a place for that.

McChuck wrote:
wordsmythe wrote:

Just what I needed in the wake of all these Steam gifts: my Kickstarter code for Shadowrun!

Tell me more.

I can tell you that KY0 is suddenly 50% off, now that the summer sale has ended.

kazooka wrote:

I am way too fascinated with the idea that they decided to release 'The Smurfs 2" for the DS, but not the 3DS. "3DS? Hell no, that's way too up-market for Smurfs 2!"

Too true... don't want to alienate the hand-me-down DS from Dad or brother market.

Scaphism wrote:
HantaXP wrote:
Stylez wrote:

I've got good memories of the shadowrun FPS. It's where I first played multiplayer games with a lot of the GWJ contingent at the time. I'm looking forward to the RPG though, and have an idea kicking around for a campaign of my own in the level builder.

Agreed, It get's a lot of hate, but I remember it being pretty fun to play with various members of GWJ...

It was! Shadowrun was a fun console FPS and the cross-platform play was actually done well. It was one of those games that I knew wasn't getting traction with the greater public as I was playing it, but could not figure out why.

It was $60, multiplayer only, and releasing close to the Orange Box, which came with Team Fortress 2 as well as Half-Life 2, Ep1, Ep2, and Portal. At least, that's my explanation, since that year everyone and their mother was talking about how awesome TF2 was even though I found Shadowrun to be more interesting.

ccesarano wrote:

It was $60, multiplayer only, and releasing close to the Orange Box, which came with Team Fortress 2 as well as Half-Life 2, Ep1, Ep2, and Portal. At least, that's my explanation, since that year everyone and their mother was talking about how awesome TF2 was even though I found Shadowrun to be more interesting.

Modern Warfare and Halo 3 also shipped later that year. That's some pretty stiff competition out of the gate and it wouldn't catch much of a break as the year went on.

True, and even though people basically spend $60 for a patch to the CoD multiplayer each year, at the time dropping $60 just to play the multiplayer was unheard of.

Which is a shame because those maps had to have been a bitch to develop considering some of the potentially game-breaking powers you could get.

ccesarano wrote:

True, and even though people basically spend $60 for a patch to the CoD multiplayer each year, at the time dropping $60 just to play the multiplayer was unheard of.

Which is a shame because those maps had to have been a bitch to develop considering some of the potentially game-breaking powers you could get.

Right - teleporting elf ninjas were awesome as was the hang glider perk. I have yet to see a MP game with such fun traversal mechanics.