System Shock, the cult favorite PC horror franchise, is ready for new life incredibly soon, FleshEatingZipper has learned. According to our sources, a “new development/publishing studio will be handling the release”, spearheaded with a new digital release of System Shock 2 on GOG within days, the perfect starting point for any classic PC gaming connoisseur. A Steam release is said to follow
within the next month at a later, undetermined date. While the complexities of such a new deal were not revealed, for many years following the dissolution of Looking Glass Studios, the legal rights to the series have been up in the air and long-time fans have had to resort to abandonware or other, illicit means to acquire their rad cyberpunk dosage of Shodan’s madness. No longer!
A little history. System Shock was developed as a first-person role-playing game for the PC under the Origin/Electronic Arts name in 1994. In it, you play as the protagonist hacker who inadvertently turns Citadel Station’s peaceful AI into a terrible entity capable of mutilating humans and breeding new life to suit her wills. It was a little clunky to handle, even for its time and failed to sell well, but it gained enough interest that Electronic Arts commissioned Looking Glass and Ken Levine’s Irrational Games (whom we know better for his Bioshock work), to develop the sequel a few years later. While a large step forward in production and storytelling, the sequel failed to gain traction and Looking Glass went under shortly thereafter. System Shock as a name and as a franchise were separated by Warren Spector at the end of the last century preventing Electronic Arts – or anyone else, for that matter – from creating any further entries in the series and dull the horror’s name. (Word is that Electronic Arts had been working on a follow-up while they still had access to the System Shock name, but unable to make a real game, their efforts wound up as Dead Space.)
Our sources state that the first game won’t be available at this time, which is probably for the best considering how much more accessible the sequel is, but I have no doubt that it won’t be far behind. Perhaps this new entity will be handling future entries in the series? I don’t know, but the more people who get to enjoy these games, now fifteen years since a last entry, the better.
UPDATE: This article had previously stated a Steam release within a month, but our sources said it was not quite that soon. A new trailer for the release is supposed to be dropping in the near future and we’ll update you as soon as we get our hands on it! The extra content being bundled as part of the GOG release will be “well worth the price”, we’re told.
UPDATE #2: The studio responsible for the port? Looks like it!
UPDATE #3: We now have the confirmation! It’ll be available starting at 11AM on February 14th for $9.99. Get your wallets ready!
Heck, the timing couldn’t be more perfect: