Some exciting news today. You asked for him, now help us get him, the one and only Chris Avellone!!
If you're not familiar with Chris, he and I go back together to the mid-90s when he worked on the legendary cRPGs Planescape: Torment (as Lead Designer) and Fallout 2. Afterwards he co-founded Obsidian Entertainment and was the Creative Director. There he worked on many of their games, including being the Lead Designer of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and a senior designer on Fallout: New Vegas. We have very successfully worked with him before on Wasteland 2 and Torment: Tides of Numenera, a co-operation that is still ongoing to the joy of both parties!
Chris' involvement will be locked in the moment we pass the $1.9 million mark on the Kickstarter, where he'll be designing the Cairn of Horrors, an all new dungeon built from the worst things that live in the imagination of Chris Avellone. The Cairn has one purpose, and that purpose is to kill you. Here's what Chris had to say:
“I owe my career to seeing Bard's Tale II on a Commodore 64 at a friend's house. When I saw the streets of Skara Brae up and running (gasp - in simulated 3D! And in color!), I suddenly realized I didn't have to be the game master all the time in order to get my RPG fix, there was finally someone out there who had done the formidable job of creating a digital dungeon master for RPG aficionados with the same amount of lazy players as I had. So I have Brian Fargo to thank three times - first for the game itself (and all the Interplay RPGs I played to follow, including Bard's Tale I, Bard's Tale III, and Wasteland), second, for hiring me at Interplay, and third, for asking me to be a part of Bard's Tale IV - with your support, I hope we can make it happen!"
Additionally, at that funding level we'll also make representations of your characters in your inventory screen and you'll be able to see the gear, clothing and equipment they're wearing, rather than a paper doll.
Along with Chris, we're also bringing back the second Designer of Planescape: Torment and Creative Lead of Torment: Tides of Numenera, the inestimable Colin McComb! He will join our team at $1.7 million, designing a dungeon set in the Realm of the Elves, because we all know no one has mastered the craft of the Elves as Colin has. We'll also be expanding the game further by adding another new wilderness area, the Wilds of Lestras.
About the Realm of Elves (Coill)
The elves do not live in the world of men, and generally only come to it for sport, to toy with humans and sometimes to kidnap them. This is youthful shenanigans. Older, wiser elves leave the humans alone, for they remember a time, at the dawn of things, when elves and men lived in harmony until the men fell under the maddening influence of the Famhairaen and tried to slaughter as many elves as they could. The elves don't blame humans for their madness, but they remain wary of them, afraid that they could once again fall prey to insanity. While the elves can pass freely from their realm into the land of men, men can only enter Coill by elven invitation.
About the Wilds of Lestras
Caith's neighbor to the south and often its enemy, the Kingdom of Lestras is the home of the Lestradae, a culturally homogenous people, united under one religion and one king, but strongly divided by class. The border between Caith and Lestras is wild country. It is home to outcasts from both countries as well as those who still worship the memory of the most famous of the Lestradae, the Archmage Lagoth Zanta.
I'm so very proud of this all-star cast of writing, design, art and music we're putting together for our game. Now it's a matter of how many more people join our campaign to build these glorious RPGs!
One of our high-level reward for $2,000 and $5,000 backers was a unique one: the Xounts Up speaker with The Bard's Tale IV Style. If you never heard of Xounts, their Xounts Up is an All In One sound system plus light tower. It is one central audio system that covers your entire room with deep, high-quality sound (they sent us a prototype and we were impressed!), while the customizable style lets you make the right fit for your living room. Here's a look at the The Bard's Tale IV style:
They recently informed us they will be launching their own Kickstarter very soon, Tuesday 30 of June at noon CET! If you're in one of the lower tiers but still interesting in checking out Xounts, keep an eye open, they may even have a special promotion just for you…
Matt Chat Interview
One last thing! I joined Matt Barton on his excellent Matt Chat show to talk about The Bard's Tale IV, answer questions from fans, discuss the Kickstarter campaign, and of course, the game itself. Check it out!
Matt has done a great service for the RPG community over the years and I'm excited as always to be back on his show.
Leader in Exile