Wing Commander and Freelancer creator Chris Roberts returns from movie land with a PC only, crowdfunded space epic that has us giddy with excitement.
It really feels like this week has involved us stepping into an alternate universe when it comes to gaming. This week’s best releases all seem to hark back to an age of gaming that is both fondly remembered and nearly forgotten. We have the Looking Glass-esque Dishonored, the fourth instalment in the excellent Walking Dead adventure game and a AAA turn-based strategy title in the form of XCOM: Enemy Unknown.
It is also the week where Obsidian’s Kickstarter for Project Eternity has passed 2.6 million dollars, which means an isometric role playing game with all the trappings of the Infinity Engine games of old is going to be with us sometime in 2014.
In fact, the only thing missing from this “old is the new new” revival is a space combat title along the lines of Wing Commander, Descent: Freespace, Privateer and Freelancer.
Or at least that was missing until yesterday, when Wing Commancer creator Chris Roberts announced his return to the games industry and lifted the lid on Star Citizen, a space combat title along the lines of Wing Commander, Descent: Freespace, Privateer and Freelancer
There are actually two games being developed by Roberts. The first is Star Citizen, which is a multiplayer universe that is promised to be ever-expanding. Players will be able to follow different paths be it military or merchant, with encouragement for exploring, fighting or trading. The second title will effectively be an offline mode called Squadron 42, which will involve single or coop play through a branching campaign similar to Wing Commander.
Watch the video below and you’ll get an excellent idea of what is planned for the games. They will be PC only, running on Cry Engine 3, and looks freaking amazing. Even better for us died in the wool PC gaming snobs, Roberts promises to actually push the PC technologically, something that doesn’t happen nearly enough (and is frankly impossible when it comes to multi-platform development). The video alone has both David and Myself giddy with excitement, and we’ll both be throwing money at Roberts so he can make it happen.
We say that because the game is being developed with a crowd funding model in mind. Unlike everything else this year, this isn’t a Kickstarter focused effort, but rather it involves giving money directly to the developer. There are a pile of tiers available, which will give access to ingame titles and ships, as well as alpha and beta access to the games themselves.
Just like Kickstarter getting financially involved is a risk, and not a traditional pre-order, with the final game still two years away. But to Robert’s credit he has begun the process a year into development, which means that there is already something to show in the form of the videos. Speaking of which, you should really set aside 12 minutes to check out the full video from Roberts (1km long carrier, yes please!)