Earlier this month we were invited over to FASA Studios in Redmond Washington to check out a playable build of Shadowrun. While the game is a multiplayer oriented first person shooter itís based on the long running pen-and-paper RPG originally created by FASA thatís now being run by FanPro. The Shadowrun game is of course not the first time that a pen-and-paper RPG has been adapted into video or PC game form. The biggest example is Dungeons and Dragons which has spawned a ton of PC RPGs over the years along with other genres like action-RPGs, RTS games and most recently a massively multiplayer game. Other titles like Vampire: The Masquerade, Call of Cthulu and others have also been adapted (some more loosely than others) into video and PC games as well.
However, some other well known games in this genre have either never been adapted into games or havenít had a real modern day video/PC game adaptation in some time. After playing and enjoying Shadowrun we wondered what other games might be ripe for the picking and discovered that there might be some other franchises that would be perfect for such a revival.
: Considered by many to be the premiere super hero themed pen-and-paper RPG, Champions was first launched in 1981 and is still a very active RPG as developed by its publisher Hero Games. The open ended nature of Champions allows people to pretty much create any kind of super hero they want. In the early 1990ís Hero Games attempted on their own to create a Champions PC game but that set-up did not last and the project was cancelled. So far there are no indications that Hero Games plans to try again nor are there any announced plans for a third party to take on the task of developing a Champions title.
We donít know what the odds are for a true PC Champions game but we do think that itís certainly an interesting prospect, even with a ton of other super hero games like Ravenís Marvel based action-RPGs, Irrationalís Freedom Force series and of course the City of Heroes/Villains MMORPGs from Cryptic. We attempted to contact Hero Games to see if they have any new plans for a video/PC game adaptation. Hero Gamesí Steve Long told us, ďWeíd love to do a game like that, but it would be a question of licensing the name and IP to a partner we could work with to develop the game.Ē
: This well known RPG series was created in the mid-1980ís by Shane Hensley (who currently works for City of Heroes developer Cryptic Studios) as an true alternative to the many fantasy RPGs out on the market. Set in an alternate 19th century American West where creatures and monsters roamed the range alongside cowboys and Indians, this title has a ton of potential to be turned into a great video and/or PC game.
Indeed, UK game developed Headfirst acquired the rights to make such a Deadlands game and had completed a three level demo to show to publishers before the developer went out of business shortly after the release of their 2005 Xbox-PC game Call of Cthulu: Dark Corners of the Earth. In a phone conversation with FiringSquad for this article, Hensley told us that he was very impressed with the demo that Headfirst had created and was disappointed that their Deadlands game would never be completed. Hensley told us that he is currently shopping around the Deadlands video/PC game license to a number of interested parties but there is no word on when such a deal will be announced.