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Wasteland franchise may return through Kickstarter campaign

Double Fine may have sparked a revolution of sorts last week when it raised oodles of cash to help fund its adventure game side-project through the crowdfunding site Kickstarter. The success of the sans-publisher experiment has since piqued the interest of game makers everywhere, including that of the PC RPG pioneer and current inXile Entertainment CEO, Brian Fargo.

“Pondering bringing Wasteland back through this crowdfunding. It's a world I have longed to work with again,” tweeted Fargo, referencing his 1988 post-apocalyptic RPG which served as the inspiration for the Fallout series. Responding to the immediate positive feedback, he added, “Very encouraging to see all the love for a new Wasteland. Crowdfuning might be the perfect way to make it a reality...”

Fargo, who also had a hand in creating classics like Bard's Tale and Baldur's Gate, confirmed his intentions to IGN, noting he and his team are already kicking around ideas for the Wastelander reboot. If it is a reality, Fargo insisted the game would not stray far from its PC gaming roots, explaining, “[It] would be focusing on top-down, probably isometric, party based, skill based – where if you'd just finished playing Wasteland and moved onto this you'd feel comfortable.”

Later, he delivered a similar message to followers, tweeting, “I want fans to know that a new Wastleand would be complete old school vibe and made with input from gamers. Made the gamers way.”

Fargo estimated it would take nearly a million dollars to develop a Wasteland follow-up. And while he admitted the Kickstarter model isn't likely to work for every studio, he said his project carries a special significance in the gaming community, insisting, “A lot of people have forgotten that there would have been no Fallout if there wasn't a Wasteland."

The Wasteland Kickstarter campaign is expected to go live within a month. Will you be part of the crowd?


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5 comments

  • chad-munn - February 17, 2012 9:18 a.m.

    My friends and I put SO many hours, day, maybe weeks into this game. I doubt it'll come back as awesome to us now as it was back then, but I'm glad someone is even talking about it. "You exploded the ______ into a blood sausage". or something along those lines! It was great!!!
  • tiben36 - February 16, 2012 2:58 p.m.

    im glad theyre thinking into bringing back wastleland, but who's gonna support it, not many younger gamers know brian fargo, well, is much less aknowledge than tim schafer, this might be a "problem" for the fund raising i hope it wont die in the egg
  • TheVoid - February 16, 2012 2:41 p.m.

    Wasteland! Holy crap, it's as if an old-school PC gamer dream-come-true machine has fallen out of the sky! First I learn that X-Com is getting a PROPER reboot thanks to Firaxis (although still curious to see what the first-person version does with the franchise, but the Firaxis news really stuck it to 2K's misconception that "no one cares about turn-based strategy anymore")... Then Jagged Alliance gets a decent reboot (sadly not turn-based, but at least largely respectful of its roots, although I'd still tell anyone to stick to JA2 if they want a true JA experience)... Then DoubleFine gets the funding they wanted AND THEN SOME to develop what is likely to be an awesomely fun old school "point and click" adventure game... And now news that a (suitably retro) return to the world of Wasteland as at least in consideration. Jesus! For those that aren't familiar with Wasteland, it was simply incredible for it's time and clearly influenced the original Fallout games. It had a top-down map shared with a narrow text field to better describe your surroundings, although when it switched to combat you were shown your team's stats along with a text field that detailed the unfolding action with an ultra-cool animation window that represented the impressive "flash" of it's day (which definitely elevated Wasteland above the largely "gee I guess I have to imagine EVERYTHING" RPG gameplay of it's time - not that there's anything wrong with that!). So if you were preyed upon by mutant dogs, you got to see this cool repeating loop of well-animated mutant dogs attacking throughout the combat sequence. I really hope that would make a comeback - even just a bit more spit & polish from what it was then would be terrific today. Not to mention that the post-apocalyptic setting was revolutionary for it's time, if not still rather underutilized today. The settings and quests were memorable (which really counts for something considering we are talking about 1988 here) and the open-endedness was staggering. For example, my friend found this wonderful exploit that boosted the team's medic in no time: We intentionally deemed one of the characters a living, breathing punching bag (if not target sheet). During combat we would (figurately and literally) throw him to the wolves until he was knocking on death's door, and then have our medic patch him up and gain all kinds of experience in the process. Worse, if things were slow we would shoot the poor guy to a pulp ourselves, and then send in doc to do his thing. Exploit? Certainly. But also incredibly entertaining with a hardened medic reward to boot, which came in VERY handy later in the game. But of course those were the days when sitting alongside a friend and tearing down a massive RPG together (even if only one of us was playing at a time) was par for the course. We became connected to our characters largely because of the (mis)adventures we happily initiated, cracking each other up with dialogue we would generate ourselves. At the end of a furious battle in which "Punching Bag" walked away nearly scratchless, my friend voiced the part: "You guys aren't going to shoot me, are you?" "Nah, doc is too busy patching us up, so you're off the hook for now". Of course, the second the rest of the team returned to full health, guns were drawn and Punching Bag was quickly reminded of his place (to our utter delight). None of what I described was game-driven. You weren't given a guy named "Punching Bag" for that purpose. The game was simply open-ended enough to allow us to go that route, which you rarely see in even the most open-ended games today. Ah, Wasteland. Do come back, and don't forget who you were because many of us haven't forgotten.
  • BackwaterRifle - February 16, 2012 1:21 p.m.

    This is a complete and total win, I want this!
  • ZhugeLiang - February 16, 2012 10:21 a.m.

    Wow, news about Wasteland was the very last thing I was ever expecting to see on GamesRadar! I'm glad to see this game getting a chance at revival. I'll support this project for sure.

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