News

Obsidian "continue to call up" publishers for RPGs, "any opportunity" for Star Wars
Posted: 25.04.2014 15:24 by Simon Priest Comments: 6
A Skyrim-sized RPG from Obsidian Entertainment? Co-founder Feargus Urquhart would love that kind of project, and it's why publishers continue 'making sense' for those types of games as they cost tens of millions.

Barring Star Citizen, crowd-funding just can't funnel that kind of money into huge RPGs. Urquhart admits the studio keep badgering publishers for work on big names.

Should there happen to be something Star Wars flavoured, Obsidian would be the first into the meeting room making lightsaber noises and re-enacting the Battle of Hoth.

"Right now, fewer major games are being worked on by independent developers than almost any time in the games industry. That's one of the challenges of being an independent developer right now," Feargus Urquhart told CVG.

"I would love to say that I could go up on Kickstarter and raise $15, $20, $30 million dollars to do our own big triple-A console game. But the reality is - minus Star Citizen - that's probably a little bit of a pipe dream. When it comes to making bigger console RPGs, us working with publishers makes sense."

"It's a big apparatus to try to ship these big console RPGs. I think we'll always continue to talk to publishers, not just because of funding - although obviously that's a big part of it - but also just because of the realities of publishing big console projects." Obsidian developed Fallout: New Vegas for Bethesda - which was rather sizeable.

Today Obsidian is creating RPG Pillars of Eternity which is the result of a $4 million Kickstarter campaign.

"I won't even use names, but for us to go off and do our own Skyrim-like game that's going to be on next-gen consoles, I'd love to do that. I'm not saying we're talking to Bethesda about doing a Skyrim-like game or anything like that, but just saying that's something we continue to call up and talk to publishers about," continued Urquhart.

"We have a lot of experience doing that, we love to do it, and if we can get them convinced of an idea, or if they already want to do it, then that would be something that we would choose to do."

Of course the IP to trump all IPs for Urquhart is Star Wars, and Obsidian developed the follow-up to BioWare's Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic RPG, before trying their hand at their own original creation - Alpha Protocol for SEGA.

"Well, if someone called you up tomorrow and said, 'hey, do you want to make a Star Wars game?' What's the answer? I mean, that's how it happened with South Park. They called up and said, 'hey, do you guys want to make a South Park game?' And your quick, knee-jerk reaction is, well, yeah!"

"I could say no because I don't want us to be seen as the developer that just makes licensed games. But then I feel like I'd be turning down the opportunity of a South Park game just because, which seems weird," he explained.

"When it comes to Star Wars, I was seven and my mom took me to see Star Wars, and I saw Empire when it came out, and I saw Jedi when it came out. I'm in the Star Wars generation, so if anyone gives me any opportunity to make a Star Wars game I'd make a Star Wars game."

The licensing for Star Wars games currently resides with EA for the next decade as Disney, the new owner of the Death Star, closed LucasArts down and ceased all internal game development. EA has teased multiple Star Wars projects are on the go, so it doesn't seem likely Obsidian will be force wielding any time soon.

Obsidian is now in partnership with Paradox Interactive to distribute Pillars of Eternity and other physical goods to backers of the RPG. Perhaps we'll see a Skyrim-sized RPG in the Crusader Kings universe? All those bastards running around...

Source: CVG

Comments

By The_Tingler (SI Core) on Apr 25, 2014
The_Tingler
South Park's currently my game of the year so far and I'm massively looking forward to Pillars of Eternity, so I hope the future's bright for Obsidian. Another Fallout from them would be utterly grand.
By SirRoderick (SI Elite) on Apr 25, 2014
SirRoderick
Basically these guys are my new Bioware right now :3
By Voqar (SI Core Veteran) on Apr 25, 2014
Voqar
I stopped reading at "our own big triple-A console game" because I could give a rat's ass about consoles and I'm sick of consoles, even the supposed "next gen" consoles, dragging down or influencing PC gaming design.

This is one of the thinks that dampens my enthusiasm for games like Dragon Age 3 or Witchter 3 - knowing that the UI is going to be mediocre because of consoles and/or that gameplay will be dumbed down and streamlined due to consoles.

This isn't to say that all games are terrible that are designed to work for consoles too, but it's like even when a game is really good and has to exist on consoles, when you get it on PC, you can always say, yes, but it could be better if the UI wasn't so dorky, or if this element didn't have to work this way because of consoles and was purely PC, and so on.

PC gaming has regained a ton of ground in the past few years but sadly the console sickness still infects it.
By SirRoderick (SI Elite) on Apr 25, 2014
SirRoderick
You take this way too seriously, has anyone ever told you that?
By danfreeman (SI Elite) on Apr 25, 2014
danfreeman
He ain`t wrong though,for a pc gamer hearing a game is made with console specifics is not good news and i haven`t seen anything that says otherwise.
By nocutius (SI Elite) on Apr 25, 2014
nocutius
Can't be helped really, a bigger market has very clear advantages for the developers specially considering how AAA is getting more and more expensive all the time.