The ultimate downfall and dissolution of Silicon Knights is one of the uglier stories out of the business side of gaming in the last few years. Rumors of mismanagement alongside actual terrible games and a protracted lawsuit against Epic left the once-beloved developer a shell of itself. In all of the press surrounding those last days of SK, Denis Dyack could be alternately seen as a visionary hustling to realize innovative game ideas or a huckster who misused resources to fob off a bad games to consumers in order to fund his grand visions.
The narrative out of Silicon Knights founder is that his latest endeavor, “Shadow of the Eternals” from the new studio Precursor Games, is a chance to work directly with the audience and fans in the creation of their next project, a followup to the Gamecube classic, “Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem.”
“Shadow of the Eternals” is being planned as an episodic followup in everything but name to “Eternal Darkness,” with a story that similarly spans centuries of human history tying together mysterious threads of murder and magic. The first episode, “A Dream Within A Dream” would put players in control of both modern-day Louisiana homicide detective Paul Becker and handmaiden/lover to Elizabeth Bathory, Clara.
Like “Eternal Darkness,” “Shadow of the Eternals” would make its protagonists sanity a key feature of the gameplay, along with magic and combat.
Precursor games is seeking $1.5 million to develop “Shadow of the Eternals,” racking up $24k within the first few hours of the campaign. I’m only wary about all of this because Dyack, a doubtless smart guy who I want to root for, has a history of making big claims and underperforming. Please keep that in mind before you click the button to support this game.
The first episode has a planned release for Q3 2014 for the PC and the Wii U, using the CryEngine. It represents a return for Dyack to a Nintendo console for the first time since SK’s “Metal Gear” remakes.
An “Eternal Darkness” sequel has long been one of the most-requested titles from Silicon Knights and a proper sequel was under development in parallel with the creative and financial flop “X-Men: Destiny.” It’s not clear if “Eternal Darkness 2” was one of the titles whose code had to be scrapped following the judgment against the studio in the Epic suit, but it could explain why this isn’t being positioned as a direct sequel.
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