For those of you who don’t spend your time scanning videogame news websites all day long, this might come as a bit of a surprise. But, in the past few weeks, Interplay, a former giant in the PC gaming world, has reopened the legendary Black Isle Studios. Don’t bother clicking on that link, though. See, despite having reopened the website, started a twitter and a facebook, and doing nothing, Interplay has done nothing.
Black Isle Studios, which splintered in 1998 and was finally shut down in 2003 by its parent company, Interplay, was responsible for the heyday of American RPGs. The studio produced some of the most well known and still played titles in the genre, such as Fallout, Planescape:Torment, and the Baldur’s Gate series. Following the 1998 split, many of the original developers in the company moved on to the now infamous Obsidian Entertainment.
The nearly empty website simply directs people to the facebook and twitter account, while the facebook account simply displays some promo pictures. And by some, I mean just one. Additionally, the twitter account seems all but dead. It’s hard to see this as any kind of major financial move by a company that has repeatedly failed to live up to its expectations over the past decade, but damnit, let’s stay positive. Why? Because, we’re getting the band back together, that’s why. Oh wait……Chris Avellone, current Obsidian Entertainment developer and Black Isle former developer, announced just last week that he doesn’t know anything “about the Black Isle Studio news announcement, doesn’t involve me or Obsidian… or well, anyone that I know. ;) ” via his twitter account.
The announcement (or lack their of, really) comes on the heels of Interplay’s final settlement with Bethesda Softworks over the Fallout intellectual property, in which Interplay walked away with $2 million and the right to continue to develop their Fallout MMO (but under a different name). Though details are still quite scarce, smart money says Interplay is making one last grab at getting their company back into the game. Interplay has been in slow decline for nearly a decade now, and has failed to produce on several projects and promises, since then. Is this just another attempt by Interplay to make quick cash? Probably, but I for one will be crossing my fingers and hoping that somehow Interplay will bring back one of the greatest gaming companies to ever exist.
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