Friday, 13 February 2015

First D&D 5th Edition video game is a BALDUR'S GATE spiritual successor

Unexpectedly, Wizards of the Coast have announced that the first Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition video game will be a lower-priced RPG heavily influenced by classic RPGs Baldur's Gate and Neverwinter Nights.

The game, Sword Coast Legends, will be set on the Sword Coast of the Forgotten Realms (the new edition's default setting), like the Baldur's Gate series, and will allow anyone from 1 to 4 players to take part in an epic adventure. The game will also feature DM tools, to allow aspiring creators to craft their own adventures. The game will be a PC-only release, likely at a lower price point than normal. The game will be played from an overhead, isometric perspective but in full 3D, bearing more than a passing resemblance to last year's extremely successful Divinity: Original Sin.

The news is surprising but welcome. The gameplay looks solid and the developers, n-Space and Digital Extremes, worked on the pleasingly bonkers recent action game Warframe. Lead director Brent Knowles was also a veteran of BioWare's heyday, working on a number of titles including being one of the main creative forces on Dragon Age: Origins. He quit when EA mandated a quickie action sequel (which became the troubled Dragon Age II) rather than investing in a proper, large-scale epic sequel. His presence should hopefully mean that the game is quite epic and will feature more tactical combat (which already seems to be the case). Hopefully we should learn more soon.

Meanwhile, Beamdog, who recently updated the Baldur's Gate and Icewind Dale games to modern standards, are continuing work on an all-new interquel set between Baldur's Gate and its sequel, using the original game engine. Both games are expected for release in late 2015.

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