When I sit down to figure out what subject I am going to tackle on my weekly blog I try to find some video game news or event that has been relevant to me the most over the last week.† As I had thought about it this week though I realized that despite the media attention over the Xbox One there was one thing that had captivated me more then I could have imagined. †
That is Shadow of the Eternals.
You may remember, although I think it is unlikely I have weekly readers of this blog, but a few weeks ago I talked about the project and at the time I was skeptical.† I think most people would say that was justified stance to take.† However after I had posted that original blog, being such an incredible fan of Eternal Darkness, I ended up finding myself in a conundrum.† I was incredibly excited for the potential of the project, but the circumstances around Silicon Knights had me concerned.† At the end of the day I realized that all issues aside I really wanted to see the project come to life and that if I didnít contribute to it I felt like I wasnít doing my part, however small that contribution may be.† I was a bit nervous about it all but I made the plunge.
What an amazing surprise it ended up being.
The first thing that surprised me though is how much I have enjoyed the community that formed around this project!† I have participated in a quite a few different online communities through the years, but I have never experienced something like this.† Iím sure a lot of it has to do with the fact that community is focused on a very specific game.† It really boils down to fans of Eternal Darkness who are energized to see what Precursor can do with this spiritual successor.† When you are getting into the discussions you are ultimately participating with people who share a passion over the same specific experience as you and as such grants a common bond before you even reach any conversation. †It is also possible that the overwhelmingly positive discussions are because the project is based in Canada and Canadians are stereotypically well known to be a kind and sharing people. Regardless itís refreshing to see a community that prides itself in promoting creativity, positivity and a shared passion of this game. †
Once you are in the mix of things one of the next things you will notice is how communicative the Precursor team is.† They are in the forums and greeting people, answering questions and blowing my mind.† Did you know that the actor that played Jek Porkins in Star Wars was also the voice actor of Maximilian Roivas?† With the Precursor team now sharing the limelight with Dyack it is easy to see the incredibly creative and enthusiastic people that are the backbone of this project.† Ken McCulloch especially, whom they title the lore keeper, world builder and dream merchant, is an easy stand out of the bunch.† He comes off as an incredibly brilliant and inspired personality.† I can see him as one of those people who can captivate an audience for hours just by talking lore and design philosophy.† Together they are fostering creative projects from the community that could help shape the game, like offering up gameplay suggestions, ideas for lore and, of course, sanity effects.† They have been consistent at making daily updates for those interested and really bringing the community into a side of game development that I had never experienced before.† I find it to be entirely fascinating.
On the side they also have some really entertaining ARG stuff having to do with the mythos of the game.† This week, for example, they posted up this picture of a rosetta with some unknown writing on it.† Further down in the message I found a picture that had some interesting lore written in it, but it was written in the form of what looked like a word search.† As I tried to solve the puzzle and figure out the meaning of the way different letters were highlighted I realized that I had found a QR code.† I then whipped out the picture editor that I have and started blackening in boxes.† Once I finally got it so that my phone could scan it I was directed to a website that, amongst other content, contained a picture of a cipher, (which I soon found out was the final part of a cipher that had been discovered earlier in the project).† Now that I had completed the cipher I was able to start deciphering the rosetta. †I printed it out and started writing on it with a pencil and blocking out words like I was back in my childhood mapping out an NES game.† I know that an ARG is nothing new, but wow!† It was a super exhilarating feeling to feel part of a bigger project and story!† If this is the type of experiences that they are setting out to create with this community and game then we are in for a special adventure.
There are a couple of final things to point out since I feel they are key items that I have seen that people are not aware of yet.† First, they do have a Kickstarter now.† The way Kickstarter works is they donít take your money unless it meets itís funding goal.† If the project doesnít make it then there is absolutely no risk to you.† For those that have already contributed via PayPal that money WILL be refunded if the project does not make itís goal.† Second, if you are a person that is concerned about Denis Dyackís involvement with the project, especially in light of the Kotaku article I urge you to check out his rebuttal.† The brief recap is that he realizes that mistakes were made in the past, but makes a very compelling argument regarding falsities in the article and why there should be trust put into Precursor Games. † †
If despite all of my words you are still on the fence I highly recommend you check out what Shadow of the Eternals has to offer.† For someone who was just sitting there a short time ago I can say that the only thing I regret was waiting so long.
P.S. If any of you out here did support the project you would be my hero for reading and voting on my contest entry: Nothing Happens By Coincidence.† Mark it as Codex Worthy in the first post!