Shadowrun Returns Gets Some Style

Shadowrun Returns Gets Some Style

The first batch of Shadowrun Returns in-game art assets looks mighty sweet indeed.

The Shadowrun Returns Kickstarter hit it big this spring, drawing more than $1.8 million from fans of the franchise eager to see it brought to PCs and tablets in a way that doesn't suck. Now, with a few months under their belts to figure out what they're going to do with all that money, the team at Harebrained Schemes has put out a handful of character models and environment concepts to give players an idea of what they've got cooking.

The original plan was to give the game a relatively simply top-down perspective, but that went out the window after the second money truck rolled up. "One of the game's largest growth factors was the change from a top-down to an isometric point of view, which is much more dynamic but also much more expensive to create," the team explained in a new blog post. "We explored several different methods to bring the rich details of the Shadowrun world to life in an isometric POV and settled on a hybrid approach that merges 2D environments and 3D characters. The 2D background allows us to deliver a level of detail, depth, and expressiveness that we think will capture the tone we're working toward, while the characters' 3D structure allows for fluid movement, and a wide range of character design and equipment options."

The character models clock in at about 2000 polys, and happily look quite close to their original concepts. Players will be able to create either male or female characters from any of the "meta-human" races, with "an enormous variety of character customization" options available through selectable skin colors, unique gear and clothing. The environmental screens were put together in Photoshop using in-game assets, but the team said that "overall, this is the look that we are shooting for."

Some comments have been critical of the "cartoonish" look of the character art, but I don't think that's entirely out of line for a game that drops Tolkien-esque fantasy characters into a cyberpunk world. Much will depend on how it looks in action, and the team acknowledged that character movement may not be quite as "dynamic" as it appears in the concepts. But so far, I think, so good.

Source: Harebrained Schemes

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I'm now much more interested in this now that I have something to grab onto instead of just some concept art and promises. They got the IP licence, right?

Very interesting design. I'll be honest, this and Wasteland 2 look a lot better than I thought they would. Thumbs up here!

Can't wait for this. Shadowrun was a favourite growing up. One of the few fantasy setting that didn't kneel before Tolken's world like General Zod.

Count me in as one of those who is a little put off by the cartoonish character design. I'm just not sure they exhibit the grit and menace that the franchise always used to be known for. that said, they do look very good if a little out of place to me, and the game itself is sounding very good.

I imagine retaking Moria would have been much easier with AK-47s :P

DVS BSTrD:
I imagine retaking Moria would have been much easier with AK-47s :P

Just stay away from the Balrogs, regardless.

Love it. Looks a little like the third edition cover, actually.

maybe with the outpouring for this we may get an actual rpg one of these years.

The cartoonish look doesn't jive so well with the original source material but it's not like video games have come anywhere close to doing justice to the IP previously. Honestly, if they make the gameplay fun and the story enticing, then I don't care. So far, the game that has come closest to Shadowrun in my book is Deus Ex.

Oh my. Is it too late to give them my money? o.o This is a great idea. If it's half as good as the SNES/Megadrive classic, we're in for a treat.

I dig the art style they are using...it has me really excited to play the game now...

Glad I gave them my money during their Kickstarter...

Excitement + 100

FUCK I LOVE KICKSTARTER!lol

Why am I here? I should be checking this stuff out on Kickstarter.

Orc Rigger eh? I hope I can relive my days as an Orc Street Samurai. Colour me intrigued.

definitely has a cool style; I am liking the more retro, 2D isometric vibe it's giving off

StriderShinryu:
Count me in as one of those who is a little put off by the cartoonish character design. I'm just not sure they exhibit the grit and menace that the franchise always used to be known for. that said, they do look very good if a little out of place to me, and the game itself is sounding very good.

I dunno. Shadowrun to me always seemed to have the minimum amount of grit and menace to qualify as cyberpunk. It's a rottweiler with its teeth filed off.

Not that I'm not looking forward to it though.

The Random One:

StriderShinryu:
Count me in as one of those who is a little put off by the cartoonish character design. I'm just not sure they exhibit the grit and menace that the franchise always used to be known for. that said, they do look very good if a little out of place to me, and the game itself is sounding very good.

I dunno. Shadowrun to me always seemed to have the minimum amount of grit and menace to qualify as cyberpunk. It's a rottweiler with its teeth filed off.

Not that I'm not looking forward to it though.

It can come in two varieties, Pink Mohawk and Black Trenchcoat. I've always been a fan of the Pink Mohawk approach; robbing top corp buildings dressed as hotdogs. But some people really like to hone in on the dystopian nature of it.

Think about it, you've got the Tamanous picking up people off the street and pulling their squishy bits out. You've got aztechology carving into people making blood spirits. You've got huge social dissonance and on top of that wars all across the world between the aforementioned cops

I'd argue that 2070 is post cyberpunk but 2050 is certainly cyberpunk

Dayum. If the environments look as good as the concept art does, this game is gonna be bloody beautiful.

I'm impressed. I'll be sure to put this on my "Games To Buy" list now that I've seen something a bit more concrete from it. Here's hoping it'll be even better on release.

I really, really they don't screw this up. I still remember the Xbox/PC you can play together over GFWL/Xbox live shambles that was the shooter.

*shudder*

StriderShinryu:
Count me in as one of those who is a little put off by the cartoonish character design. I'm just not sure they exhibit the grit and menace that the franchise always used to be known for. that said, they do look very good if a little out of place to me, and the game itself is sounding very good.

Inorite? Them dragon nipple rings, drunk dragon, the dwarf chica with a tank top with a angry flower face on her tit etc etc just screams "grit and menace".
There's a reason the grand-daddy of Cyberpunk considered Shadowrun shit, because Shadowrun was hell of a lot less gritty than his works.(also because he took it as an insult to mix fantasy and cyberpunk, but fuck Gibson on this)

 

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