System Shock 3 is the third installment in the System Shock series, a set of horror survival/first-person RPGs that follow the protagonist as they battle their way out of a space station controlled by an evil AI (System Shock) and a virus-ridden ship (System Shock 2). The franchise, which asks players to use a combination of exploration and combat to escape dystopian, sci-fi settings, paved the way for games like Prey and the Bioshock series.
After announcing it had acquired the right to develop System Shock 3 late last year, OtherSide Entertainment has now announced today that it has begun developing the game in its new Austin, TX studio. In a public statement, the company introduced their core team on the game too - a roster that includes a number of experienced designers.
Paul Neurath founded OtherSide Entertainment in 2014. Neurath also founded Looking Glass Studios, which produced the original two System Shock Games but folded due to financial issues in 2000. Though Boston-based, OtherSide Entertainment has announced that it has begun development on System Shock 3 in a new Austin studio. The game's creative team includes Warren Spector (Deus Ex, Underworld) as Creative Director and Studio Manager, Sheldon Pacotti (Deus Ex, Deus Ex: Invisible War) as Design Director, Arturo Pulecio (Lord of the Rings Online, Dungeons and Dragons Online) as Art Director, and Jason Hughes (Wing Commander, Star Wars) as Tech Director. The studio is also speaking with team members of the original System Shock games, as well as Terri Brosius, who voiced the original series' antagonistic AI, SHODAN.
This new team effectively reconvenes the forces behind Looking Glass Studios and the original System Shock games. Creative Director Warren Spector was a producer for the original games, and he and Neurath have worked closely throughout their careers. In a statement, OtherSide Studios cited the team's experience, saying:
All of these team leaders have worked with Spector before on games including Deus Ex, Deus Ex: Invisible War, Disney Epic Mickey, and Disney Epic Mickey: The Power of Two.
Such an experienced team is sure to do justice to the original series, which launched gamer interest in sci-fi horror survival games. Renewed interest in the franchise is sure to flourish with the release of this game, along with Night Dive Studio's reboot of the original. The reboot's creative team features many members of the Fallout: New Vegas crew and experienced designer Chris Avellone (Fallout 2, Fallout: New Vegas). With so many industry heavy-hitters backing this franchise, it's clear to see that it was a pioneer for its genre.
Developers can only hope that interest in first-person sci-fi horror games hasn't lapsed since the '90s, with consumer interest now leaning more towards combat-heavy games like the Call of Duty series and sandbox-style worlds like those in Grand Theft Auto. Of the top 10 best-selling games for June 2016, none occupy a genre like that established by the System Shock games. It may be time for System Shock 3 to break through the clutter, or the game may just be a cult favorite.
As System Shock 3 is still in early development, a release date has not yet been set.
Source: OtherSide Entertainment
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