Category Archives: Video Games

Shadowrun Online: VERY First Impressions

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Oh, Shadowrun, so near and dear to my heart. I first discovered you as a Sega Genesis game when I was just about to enter high school, and was enamored by your eclectic mix of sci-fi and sorcery, your dark cityscapes, and working hard to make an “honest” Nuyen without getting geeked. It wasn’t until a full year later that I discovered that you were an actual tabletop roleplaying game. I saw the second edition book at my Friendly Local Game Store, instantly gave up my short fling with the Palladium RPG, and never looked back.

 
Two more editions have come and gone, and now we’re into the brand new 5th edition. The year of Shadowrun happened, and now we’re getting a new card game, a board game, and a miniatures game. Jordan Weisman brought us Shadowrun Returns for our PCs, and now Cliffhanger Productions is bringing us Shadowrun Online.

 
SRO has a bit of spotty history…

 

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A first look at Shadowrun Returns

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It started as a humble little video game homage that took it’s chances on Kickstarter, with a hope that the Shadowrun brand name still garners at least enough respect and popularity to generate a sum of money large enough to fund it. Harebrained Schemes decided to shoot low for a video game project; $400,000. “Surely,” they tought,  “we can produce a small game that will please some old-school fans of Shadowrun?” None of them were prepared for the tidal wave of fan-backing that they received in record time. In just over 24 hours, Harebrained Schemes had it’s $400,000…and the fan generosity did not stop there. By the end of it’s Kickstarter life, Shadowrun Returns had earned a staggering $1.8 MILLION dollars. Read the rest of this entry

Mitch Gitelman: You’re okay.

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Intellectual properties are a fickle thing, especially when it comes to fans of said franchises. Fans can be sent into a panic over the slightest transitions, be it a new company picking up the rights for it, a director or a writer making radical changes to established canon, or the whispers of the dreaded “reboot.”

 
It doesn’t matter what fandom you follow; each one has its own particular idiom and temperament, some more volatile than others. Anime fans have their trend and cosplay snobs, Tolkien purists won’t stop “quoting the man himself,” Ghostbusters fans won’t accept you unless you constructed all of your props accurately and by hand, and steampunk…well, there’s a good chunk of the steampunk community that are nigh-quixotic in their delusion of the Victorian lifestyle. Granted, these are all extreme examples, but the fact remains that fans can get ugly. Read the rest of this entry

A Run Worth Funding

Hoi, Chummers!

I’ve been on quite the Shadowrun kick lately. It’s not surprising, considering it’s number 2 on my list of favorite Role-Playing settings of all time. Last week, I had the pleasure of sharing my story of how I got into the world of Shadowrun, and my excitement to see Catalyst Games’ new SHADOWRUN 2050 Campaign book. This week, I still focus on Shadowrun, but I switch gears.

I was going over the daily divination in the Poor Wizard’s Almanac, and it has become apparent to me that the year 2013 is going to be dubbed “Year of the Shadowrunner.” Why? Well, because 2013 is going to be big for all Sixth World fans. Shadowrun has essentially been a dead property when it comes to electronic media. The last good Shadowrun titles came out almost 20 years ago, and the latest one didn’t even hit American or European shores. What’s that, you say? Yes, there was one made in 2007, but notice I was talking about a “GOOD” Shadowrun game.

Now, some of you may have heard that Jordan Weisman, one of the original creators of Shadowrun, has re-acquired the license for Shadowrun. This is great news, but it’s also OLD news. He and a little company called Harebrained Schemes are making a brand new Shadowrun game… Read the rest of this entry