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The Week in RPG – May 23rd, 2014

Christopher Coke Posted:
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It's been a big news week for roleplaying fans and we at RPG Files can relate. Big name after big name graced our headlines with release dates, fresh new ideas, and in the case of Transistor some really glowing reviews. And if your name is Bungie, maybe even a little hubris to stir up the fanbase. Each week, we make it our mission to keep you updated on all the happenings in the world of roleplaying games. This is your week in review for Friday, May 23!

Do you like dead things with a healthy dose of radiation? Good news! Wastleland 2 developer InXile Entertainment announced this week that their post-apocalyptic thriller will be released on August 10, 2014. Wastleland is the series that inspired the Fallout franchise and this long awaited sequel returns the genre to its roots with an isometric camera, deep character customization, and a choice-driven storyline. This is old-school roleplaying at its finest. Wasteland 2 has been available at its retail price of $59.99 on Steam Early Access since December.

Speaking of classic game reboots, Gauntlet made waves this week announcing that its take on the co-op dungeon crawler will be releasing on September 3 for $19.99. Polygon reports that pre-orders will also receive a copy of the digital comic, Darkness Calls, which tells the origin story of series villain, Morak. It would be easy to write Gauntlet off as yet another dungeon crawler but developer Arrowhead Game Studios also developed Magicka, was one of the most creative RPGs in recent memory. Let's give them a shot to surprise us.

Action-RPG, Transistor, released this week to wide praise. Players take on the role of a beautifully voiced lounge singer with a talking circuit board sword and kick mighty amounts of ass. See that Supergiant Games? That's what you call a box quote. The protagonist has her voice wrenched from her windpipes and your mission is to recover it while spending time in this neon-drenched cyber-noir world. Metacritic pegs the PC version of this game at 82 while the PS4 editions sits slightly higher at 86. Our own Bill Murphy scored it a respectable 8.7 of 10. We referred to the game as a “beautiful, story-driven experience” in our PAX East preview. It also has one of the most striking theme songs this year. Listen below.

From Software has appointed Dark Souls creator, Hidetaka Miyazaki, to company president. From here on out, new hires will be required to fail a company entrance exam 57 times before being assigned a cubicle.

Hey LotRO fans or maybe just people who saw The Hobbit! You like action in your Middle Earth?! Hot, steaming piles of orc corpses?! Piles of bear bodies and trophies of the Nine mounted still-drooling on your wall?! So do we! To help you become the most murderous non-member of the fellowship you can be, check out this super cool video that's all about how murdering dudes can help you murder other dudes but better! At least that's how I imagine the guys at Middle Earth: Shadows of Mordor selling it. Seriously, it looks like a fun game but damn if it's not a bit ghoulish.

CD Projekt Red is in the news again with its promises to release “no exclusive content for any platform” with The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. Despite this and the total lack of exclusivity it's entering into a promotional partnership with one of the big console manufacturers. Word on which is being kept mum until E3. That said, this news is slightly alarming for PC players who are used to free DLC and post-launch support that's just not possible on consoles. Still, marketing deals will only help CDPR, a developer who has proven to be one of the most creative and talented developers in the RPG space.

This next one gets under my skin. Bungie, makers of the upcoming Destiny, are once again in the news making audacious claims only the creators of Halo can make. This time they're claiming to “reinvent the first-person shooter” … right before showing us even more footage that  looks exactly like every other FPS. Except this one lets you go to the moon! Listen, I don't doubt that Destiny is a neat, maybe even revolutionary game, but it's time to put your money where your mouth is. Why isn't this the lovechild of Borderlands 2 and Halo? Then again, this is the same company that said nobody wants to play shooters with a mouse and keyboard. They're talented but either that company kool-aid is pretty tasty or they just like making waves. One of the two.

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Christopher Coke / Chris has been an MMO player since the days of MUDs and loves a good roleplaying game. During his downtime, you can find him slaying monsters as Geralt of Rivia or saving the universe as Commander Shephard. Follow him on Twitter: @GameByNight

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Christopher Coke

Chris cut his teeth on MMOs in the late 90s with text-based MUDs. He’s written about video games for many different sites but has made MMORPG his home since 2013. Today, he acts as Hardware and Technology Editor, lead tech reviewer, and continues to love and write about games every chance he gets. Follow him on Twitter: @GameByNight