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Role Playing (Games)

Look Ahead to the RPGs of 2005 56

Posted by Zonk
from the dungeon-crawling-in-the-world-of-tomorrow! dept.
RPGDot.com is running a series on Upcoming RPGs for the year 2005. The first part covers major releases from US developers, while the second piece concentrates on European and Russian games that haven't had as much press coverage. From the article: 2004 was widely considered to be one of the best for PC gaming in years, with a number of highly anticipated titles generally hitting the mark. From Rome: Total War to Sims 2, City of Heroes to Half Life 2, 2004 put PC gaming back in the gaming headlines for all the right reasons. Unless, that is, you were a fan of single player cRPGs."
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Look Ahead to the RPGs of 2005

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  • Seems to me whoever it is that got ahold of the Bard's Tale franchise has ruined it. Those games were great but another shitty top-down Diablo game it didn't need to become. How about some innovative features instead of a stripped down Baluder's Gate?

    Best all time franchises:
    Ultima (III was the first RPG I ever played outside of D&D on pen & paper early 80's)
    Bard's Tale
    Wizardry (the game listed in the article by this developer looks interesting)
    Thief
    Hitman
    Neverwinter Nights (not really a series but
  • Only thing on the horizon (that I'm aware of) for Single Player PC RPGs is Knights of the Old Republic II. It is scheduled for release in mid-Feburary at last check.

    Of course since RPGDot has ALREADY been SLASHdotted, I'm not sure what else is up there.

    Is there anything else to look forward to on the single player PC side?

    • Re:KOTOR2 (Score:5, Informative)

      by Xentax (201517) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @05:00PM (#11258226)
      And KOTOR2 is already out on the XBox, of course.

      I have to say I'm impressed. There's some nitpicky things I don't like (inventory doesn't have an "only new" filter, for example, I've seen a graphics glitch on the equip screen, and load times get obnoxious but that at least is to be expected), but as far as the story and length of play goes, I'm *very* impressed, it's a better story than KOTOR1 (IMHO) and I'm pretty sure it's longer - I'm 55 hours into the game according to my latest savegame, and I'm at least not "quite" at the end yet - it's a little hard to tell how much more I have to go.

      I'm tempted to call the combat too easy - 3 Jedi towards the end-game are nearly invulnerable on the normal setting. But that hasn't really bothered me as much as it might. The relatively 'narrow' conversation trees are a little noticable sometimes (often multiple of the response options lead to the same place instead of branching out like you might expect them to), but for the most part it's a well written and compelling story.

      Some of the new features - far better item creation/customization for example - are nice, but mostly gravy. The ease of combat has made that seem less critical to 'max out' than it might otherwise, and (just as in the first one, imho) most of what you pick up is either already useless or soon will be - too much medium and heavy armor and non-upgradeable guns.

      But as I said, that's all stuff to point out for the sake of completeness. I've enjoyed it moreso than the first, which truly surprised me.

      I wanted to wait for the PC version (mostly because Patches Are A Good Thing), but getting it sooner on XBox was still worth it - the graphics look at least as good as the first, no hassle setting up and enjoying 5.1 sound is nice - only the load times are a draw back and I'm not sure how much better that'd be on the PC.

      Xentax
      • Re:KOTOR2 (Score:3, Interesting)

        by arkanes (521690)
        I've been playing it (I'm about 25 hours in), and I've been enjoying it too. Agree with most of your points, except I have to add that that unarmed combat is way too frigging powerful. I just recently made my lightsaber (and got a second for Keira), but up until now all my characters have exclusively used unarmed. It does far more damage than any gun I've come across and quite a bit more than any melee weapon, even an unmodified lightsaber.

        I'm a little disapointed that there weren't any new useful powers f

      • I finished the game twice. First time was a light side Jedi Gardian (15) and Jedi Weapon Master (10-15 don't remember). I found the game challenging until I got my first lightsaber (2 handed), then with master speed and master flurry I could pretty much take any enemy in the game (except final bosses) in one round. I'm not sure the amount of hours I took to finish it, probably around 25-30.

        Second time was a dark side Jedi Consular (15) and Sith Lord (35). Maxed the levels using the dead jedi in the tomb

    • Elder Scrolls 4: Oblivion
      Gothic III

      Those would be some of the best games to come out, well, ever, for PC. When and if they do.
  • Between Elder Scrolls 4 and Gothic 3, I wonder where school and work come into play...
  • Good list. (Score:3, Informative)

    by Ahnteis (746045) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @03:01PM (#11256871)
    That's a good list. I'm looking forward to KOTORII, DSII, and the next Freedom Force. Some possibly interesting ones in the part II also.
    (I do in fact prefer singleplayer RPGs.)

    Star Wars: Knight of the Old Republic II - The Sith Lords
    Developer: Obsidian Entertainment
    Publisher: LucasArts
    Release Date: Feb 2005

    Dungeon Lords
    Developer: Heuristic Park
    Publisher: Dreamcatcher
    Release Date: 1st Qtr 2005

    Freedom Force vs The Third Reich
    Developer: Irrational Games
    Publisher: Vivendi Universal Games
    Release Date: 1st Qtr 2005

    Dungeon Siege 2
    Developer: Gas Powered Games
    Publisher: Microsoft
    Release Date: Spring 2005

    The Bard's Tale
    Developer: inXile
    Publisher: Vivendi Universal
    Release Date: Spring 2005

    Gothic 3
    Developer: Piranha Bytes
    Publisher: JoWood Productions
    Release Date: TBA

    The Fall: Last Days of Gaia
    Developer: Silver Style Entertainment
    Publisher: TBA
    Release Date: TBA

    The Witcher
    Developer: CD Projekt
    Publisher: TBA
    Release Date: 2005

    Elder Scrolls 4 Oblivion
    Developer: Bethesda Softworks
    Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
    Release Date: TBA
  • What about..... (Score:2, Offtopic)

    by Moby Cock (771358)
    The Matrix Online? Does that count as an RPG? I suspect it does. And that ought to be a huge title. I don't expect it to be a great game, but It really ought to sell well.
    • It's not a RPG, it's a MMORPG, which is a totally different kind of game. Neither of the articles are commenting about MMO's at all. There are at least 5-6 MMO's with 2005 release dates, none of which are being discussed. That is why it is absent.
    • They say it's MMORPG which is just RPG with a subscription fee. Anyways if this game pans out the way it's supposed to (unlike some other matrix games... Enter the Matrix cough cough) I am there.

      • MMORPT != RPG

        In a typical RPG, there is a main plot line that usually involves the killing/destruction/obtaining of a certian person/object/place. Once you do it, the game is over.

        If this were the case in a MMORPG, the first person kills the mega-bad dude, and everybody else goes "Awwwww. I wanted to kill him." Then they go home. Since this cannot be the case if a MMORPG wants to make money, this does not happen.

        So, the "flavor" or "feel" of the two types of games are completely different.
        • Nah, in an MMORPG the bad guy just respawns. Imagine, as your party leaves victorious after defeating Sephiroth, and on your way out there is a queue of 100 other parties, lined up like in a post office, waiting for their crack at him.
          Oh yeah, the other difference is that levelling up is about a hundred times slower, so as to give you a 'challenge'.
          • Nah, in an MMORPG the bad guy just respawns. Imagine, as your party leaves victorious after defeating Sephiroth, and on your way out there is a queue of 100 other parties, lined up like in a post office, waiting for their crack at him.

            Thus removing the aforementioned "cohesive plot/storyline" and replacing it with "grind,camp,voke,zerg,repeat"
      • Re:What about..... (Score:3, Informative)

        by glowimperial (705397)
        Sorry to disappoint, but the beta of Matrix Online has been getting bad, bad reviews from players. I think it's going to be like SWG. Large initial subscriber base, and immediate tank afterwards due to bad gameplay.

        A lot of Matrix Online's success is going to be dependent on the staying power of World of Warcraft.
        • So they aren't going after NDA breakers ? I'll wait until release to bitch anyway.

          I probably CAN say that I dropped out of the beta in early November (no, BEFORE WoW went gold). Still, probably a better game than Enter the Matrix. I like the concept of a more involved combat system, but the interlock system never really grabbed me.
          • I imagine that they can go after NDA breakers, but I haven't seen anyone break their NDA in a big, big way. Everyone I know who was in the Matrix Online Beta has both braodly panned it and has left the beta. That is not a good sign.
      • As a Matrix Online Beta tester, I regret to inform you that it will suck. Badly. So bad infact, that their threats to cancel beta testing status on accounts for breaking their NDA (ie: Discussing the status of the beta, like I am now), gives me a feeling of satisfaction. Here is how it works: create hip-trendy looking human character, run from Building A to Building B with the optional killing of hip-trendy looking human NPC, and level up. The entire environment is limited to repetetive city scapes and bui
        • I can't say I'm hugely surprised. Enter The Matrix was one of the laziest games I think I've played. They tried to rely purely on the novelty factor of the game having been produced in parallel with the movies...they presumably thought that everybody would be so impressed by that that it wouldn't matter if the game itself was a steaming pile. Though my view has always been that the Wachowskis completely sold their souls after the first film...in both the sequels they were simply committed to impersonating G
  • Just wanted to give some word-of-mouth advertising to this game which (due to bad marketing and bad release timing) has been largely overlooked by most gamers. It's the best RTS game out there IMHO. More strategy, less click-fest.

    Download a beta from http://www.timegate.com/kow/ [timegate.com] and then buy the game (you can pick it up now for ~$20 in most places I think).

  • The above link appears to be broken (an sql error relating to not being able to find a user id in the database).

    Copy the URL and add the following to the query string:
    &user=1

    The site will then load without problem.
  • Kindoms Hearts 2? thats scheduled for Q4 of '05. i cant believe it didnt make the list! -jordan
    • Re:what about... (Score:3, Informative)

      by glowimperial (705397)
      Probably because the article is about PC RPG's. the initial /. post didn't really explicitly say this, but the article does. Kingdom Hearts is a console game, so didn't make the article.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    As eventually happens with most "enthusiast" genres (i.e. simulations, strategy), it's kinda split right now between the uber-realistic (Morrowind, Gothic) and the simplified (Neverwinter).

    Personally, I tried and tried, but ultimatley couldn't get into Morrowind. Not because of the depth and size, but I think that it's currently *really* hard to tell a cohesive story with that kind of depth and freedom in the game world. Time sink was a factor, but not the deciding one.

    Games like Morrowind are pushing t
  • I don't know if they missed this one, or if it's not going to make 2005...

    Dragon Age [bioware.com]
    • I would be extremely surprised if Dragon Age comes out this year - after all, it's going to be based on a completely new engine, and Bioware is busy with other projects right now...

      I'd say 2006 very earliest, 2007 if we're just normally optimistic and 2010 if they're going to make it as influential as NWN has been. And Linux client in 2013, no matter what year the game is released =)

      • yeah - so I thought. The engine is supposedly quite far along, but content takes years for RPGs usually. I wouldn't be surprised if they borrowed a lot of stuff from their other engines, though (inventory management, for instance).

        hey - thought of another Fallout 3... knowing Bethesda, it will be released, but will be about 4 years in coming :)
    • Yeah, this is why I'm looking forward more to 2006, when Dragon Age and Neverwinter Nights 2 (handed over to Obsidian, although Bioware's still helping a bit from what I've heard) are slated to be finished. But I play more multiplayer than single player, mostly long-running campaigns with small, established groups of players. Neverwinter Nights is still my primary online game in the RPG genre, and I expect that both of my current campaigns will keep going throughout 2005.
  • Jade Empire? (Score:3, Informative)

    by tc (93768) on Tuesday January 04, 2005 @06:45PM (#11259212)
    They missed out Jade Empire, currently being developed by Bioware (the developers responsible for Baldur's Gate and the original KOTOR), which I believe is due out for Xbox this year (no idea about a PC version).

    That's certainly one RPG that I'm looking forward to this year.
  • by BTWR (540147)
    There's a new Legend of Zelda coming out this year, and the question always comes up as to weather it's an RPG or not. Personally, I think it's more action/adventure with RPG elements. But then again, Zelda 2 was pretty RPGish. Any thoughts?
  • The Final Fantasy franchise is the hugest in existance on the PS2. Every FF release is a major event. I am quite frankly surprised that this was not even mentioned, even though some XBOX games were mentioned a few times, and they are no doubt not nearly as huge.

    Yes, they covered themselves by saying they knew they would miss some things, but missing this one is as big as it gets.

There must be more to life than having everything. -- Maurice Sendak

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