Interplay Resurrects Planescape Studio Name

Greg Tito

PR for Dungeons & Dragons
Sep 29, 2005
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Interplay Resurrects Planescape Studio Name



The name of Black Isle Studios has returned, but without the people who made any of their games.

Planescape: Torment. Icewind Dale. Freaking Fallout. Mention any of these game titles in the company of computer RPG fanatics and they will bow their heads in reverence to Black Isle Studios. In the 90s, the developer was a division of publisher Interplay Entertainment, responsible for cementing the image of what playing a CRPG means to millions of gamers. Several key members of Black Isle left the company in 1998, while others migrated to Obsidian Entertainment. In 2003, Interplay closed Black Isle and laid off all its remaining staff due to financial reasons. Apparently, that wasn't a permanent decision because today Interplay opened up a new website, Twitter account [http://www.facebook.com/BlackIsleStudios] with the proclamation "Black Isle Studios is back."

That statement is preceded by this acknowledgement: "Our goal has always been to make the world's best RPGs." The mission statement listed on the Facebook page goes into way more detail: "Black Isle Studios is a division of Interplay formed to develop and publish high quality, commercially successful computer role-playing games."

But the re-opening of a studio with the name Black Isle Studios doesn't really mean anything. The trademark name holds weight among gamers, but as far as anything we can glean from the sources, the staff of Black Isle will not include any original members of the team.

With Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition coming this fall from a different developer and Interplay recently surviving a long legal battle with Bethesda over the rights to the Fallout MMO, one wonders exactly what this new puppet studio will create.

So, you may get your hopes up for "the world's best RPGs" - but I'll be back here playing my old CD-Roms of Baldur's Gate - all six of them!

Source: Black Isle.com [http://blackisle.com/]



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SachielOne

Former Escapecraft Op
Aug 10, 2009
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Interplay ran the studio into the ground. They can fuck right off at leave it buried instead of tainting the memory of this once-great name.
 

ResonanceGames

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Feb 25, 2011
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Interplay is barely even a company any more. Maybe if they make a good game (or even, you know, ANY game) people will take a second look at them.

This just looks like they're trying to cash in on the classic RPG resurgence that their founder spearheaded with Wasteland 2.
 

NLS

Norwegian Llama Stylist
Jan 7, 2010
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Imagine in about 20 years, 10 years after the fall of EA. Somehow EA has managed to survive by selling some of it's long lost franchises and then somehow getting money out of nowhere again. "Oh yeah guys, it's back, Westwood is coming back to town"

Naaaaah I don't think so. Let old names rest in peace, ok?
 

ResonanceGames

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Feb 25, 2011
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NLS said:
Imagine in about 20 years, 10 years after the fall of EA. Somehow EA has managed to survive by selling some of it's long lost franchises and then somehow getting money out of nowhere again. "Oh yeah guys, it's back, Westwood is coming back to town"

Naaaaah I don't think so. Let old names rest in peace, ok?
They turned Origin, the most influential PC gaming company of all time, into a half-assed Steam knockoff.

I'd buy some of these properties back from EA just to burn them in effigy.
 

Two-A

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Aug 1, 2012
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Feels like they are trying to cash in on nostalgia and brand recognition. :/

I wonder what good will this annoucement do if they aren't even planning to make a new game.
 

dangoball

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Jun 20, 2011
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Well this is interesting news. Not exiting in the least, mind you, just interesting. I really want to see how this develops.

If they actually DO produce an RPG worth playing, all the better.
 

Vkmies

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Oct 8, 2009
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These guys are the GODS of PC-RPG's. Can't WAIT to see what they'll come up with. :)
 

mattaui

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Oct 16, 2008
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All the people who made Black Isle great are elsewhere doing interesting things (see inXile and Obsidian), so I'm a lot more interested in them than this zombie brand.

This is just like seeing some formerly storied brand name slapped on some piece of plastic junk being churned out in a sweatshop somewhere. Totally meaningless.

captcha: Only from Dish? So now I get to be advertised to and annoyed, rather than just annoyed? Ridiculous.
 

Lectori Salutem

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Apr 11, 2011
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Vkmies said:
These guys are the GODS of PC-RPG's. Can't WAIT to see what they'll come up with. :)
I don't think anyone of the original Black Isle team will be back, so unfortunately, no divine studio.

Personally I don't know whether I like this or not. I guess I'll just wait 'till they release something before casting a judgement.
 

NinjaSocks333

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Jul 13, 2012
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I thought interplay had folded or something. I hope this will bring them back into the spotlight, but the lack of original developers worries me.
 

Bostur

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Mar 14, 2011
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Get ready for Baldur's Gate the Facebook edition. Special Limited time offer get Boo for only $0.99

I'm very tempted to dust off my own six CDs, but I promised myself to wait for the enhanced edition.
 

cidbahamut

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Mar 1, 2010
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Greg Tito said:
The mission statement listed on the Facebook page goes into way more detail: "Black Isle Studios is a division of Interplay formed to develop and publish high quality, commercially successful computer role-playing games."
Get the hell out.

If you're concerned with it being commercially successful you are not going to produce games of the quality I expect from Black Isle and are therefor unworthy of using that title.

Black Isle ended, let it rest peacefully rather than desecrating its corpse.
 

IamLEAM1983

Neloth's got swag.
Aug 22, 2011
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Vkmies said:
These guys are the GODS of PC-RPG's. Can't WAIT to see what they'll come up with. :)
More like the shambling corpse of what once was the god of PC RPGs, with its flesh mostly rotted away and with what's left of its jaw going "Must cash in on what little hype the unrelated Baldur's Gate HD remake is getting!"

I'm not expecting much, if at all.
 

Callate

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Dec 5, 2008
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So, having failed to make a run of creating audience interest by resurrecting one beloved name (Fallout), we're to believe that Interplay is going to deliver the goods in resurrecting a different beloved name?

For pity's sake, Interplay, stop playing games and just make some! We don't give a flying fig if you call yourself Cheese Cows from Saturn, we're looking for some shred of proof that you actually still know how to make a halfway decent game!
 

PrinceOfShapeir

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Mar 27, 2011
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cidbahamut said:
Greg Tito said:
The mission statement listed on the Facebook page goes into way more detail: "Black Isle Studios is a division of Interplay formed to develop and publish high quality, commercially successful computer role-playing games."
Get the hell out.

If you're concerned with it being commercially successful you are not going to produce games of the quality I expect from Black Isle and are therefor unworthy of using that title.

Black Isle ended, let it rest peacefully rather than desecrating its corpse.
Uh, what? Black Isle was concerned with being commercially successful. You see, let me explain economics to you. You need to make a profit to both A: Keep your team fed, sheltered, and taken care of medically in addition to paying for your next games. Profit is not a dirty word.
 

Braedan

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Sep 14, 2010
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Hmm. I have no expectations at all for this new studio. That said, the more studios putting out PC specific RPGs the better. If they manage to squeeze a good game, awesome. If not, no loss to anyone really. Except maybe the old developers who had their legacy trodden on a little bit.
 

Greg Tito

PR for Dungeons & Dragons
Sep 29, 2005
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PrinceOfShapeir said:
cidbahamut said:
Greg Tito said:
The mission statement listed on the Facebook page goes into way more detail: "Black Isle Studios is a division of Interplay formed to develop and publish high quality, commercially successful computer role-playing games."
Get the hell out.

If you're concerned with it being commercially successful you are not going to produce games of the quality I expect from Black Isle and are therefor unworthy of using that title.

Black Isle ended, let it rest peacefully rather than desecrating its corpse.
Uh, what? Black Isle was concerned with being commercially successful. You see, let me explain economics to you. You need to make a profit to both A: Keep your team fed, sheltered, and taken care of medically in addition to paying for your next games. Profit is not a dirty word.
I think what he means is that the games and type of games Black Isle were famous for would not be commercially successful today. He's thinkijg it will be less Planescape, and more Facebook game/ or Syndicate shooter reboot (Assuming Interplay can find that kind of scratch).

And yeah this is like some trailer trash naming their kid Jesus and expecting him to turn water into wine. Anyone who cares about the Black Isle name will see through this shallow attempt at nostalgia bait immediately.