Shadowbane Updates, Visit
3:27 PM | Michael Eilers | Comment on this story
For some time we've been bringing you news of Shadowbane, a massively-multiplayer online RPG in development by Wolfpack Studios for Mac and PC. This innovative title is no simple online dungeon crawl; in this digital fantasy-land you will be able to join clans, lead armies into battle and eventually -- if you are very, very good -- attempt to lead an empire. Individual players will not only participate in this alternate reality, they will have the chance to actually shape its future. And best of all, it will be totally cross-platform and a simultaneous release. The game is currently in the early stages of Beta testing.
Recently the Shadowbane web site has posted many updates, particularly in the area of character classes. Drawing from a mix of sources as well as common fantasy characters, they have posted profiles for such classes as Prelate, Ranger, Templar, and Warlock. Wolfpack is placing a heavy emphasis on background story and character, hoping to inspire players to 'act out' their roles and not simply use the game as a giant chat room for people in chain mail. Thus their class descriptions are quite involved, as this excerpt from the Templar class profile reveals:
Blessed by the touch of the Cleansing Flame, Templars are immune to fire, and their devotion to the All-Father makes them fearless in battle. Their duties to the Temple are many: Templars detain and hold suspected heretics, mete out punishment as the Confessors demand, and serve as shock troops in the Temple's ongoing war against those whose who stand outside the Light. Orcs, Elves, Irekei, pagans, and many others have felt the wrath of the Firebrands, wandering bands of Templars charged with seeking out and destroying evil wherever it may lie. Their devotion to the cause is unwavering, their commitment absolute, and their battle unending.For more information on the character classes and the game itself, be sure and visit the Shadowbane web site.
In related news, members of the fansite Shadowbane Vault recently made a trip to their 'promised land' -- Wolfpack HQ in Round Rock, Texas, just outside of Austin. While these folks are quite excited about this game, to say the least, the report of their visit is an entertaining and informative read. They refer to Wolfpack staff by the online handles the artists and programmers use, so this one is for serious fans only. Along with some images of the Wolfpack offices and recreational facilities, the article also offers details on the motion-capture lab used for character animation data. Here's an excerpt which describes the Shadowbane Vaults's attempt to discover some inside information:
After talking with Dreadflame about the interface, we started pummeling him with the 52 questions we had about guilds and guild warfare. We quickly learned what the word Blackbox™ meant. It means they won't even acknowledge the question because its top secret and not safe for virgin ears. Not easily deterred, we started asking him about his move to Austin and how he was enjoying Texas - searching for a weakness to get the answers we wanted. Damn programmers - we needed to get back to the artists and squeeze it out of them. Sensing, Dreadflame's weakening shields, Warden, Varios, and Ashen Temper came back into the office where we started up a new discussion on the overall progress of the design. The question of the day was "Are you on schedule?" the answer was a resounding yes. And from what we saw of the game - things are looking very good.That's what we like to hear. Read the rest of their report for more information than you are likely prepared to handle, and watch the pages of IMG for more Mac-specific details on this thrilling title in the near future. Currently Shadowbane is in early beta, with a final release due late this year/early next year.
Shadowbane 'Theurgy' Character Class Information
Shadowbane Web Site
Shadowbane Vault Visits Wolfpack HQ
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