System Shock 2 News


June 2nd, 1998

I'm Back!! - 12:40am EST - Saam
Hello hackers and hackerettes, boy do I have some info for you! Let's start it off with my adventures at E3:

Last Thursday, the first day of E3, me and my friend Josh from Cyrellis were checking out the booths at E3 looking for one particular booth: the LookingGlass booth. Why? So we can see our "must-see" game, Thief: The Dark Project! Also, I have been waiting for 3.5 years to finally see my idol and god, the project leader/lead programmer of System Shock, Doug Church. After hours of searching, we finally found the LG booth on the very edge of Eidos' booth. My eyes went to Doug Church, who was talking to some other media people at that moment. LG's PR guy (who was very nice, btw) asked me if I needed any help, and I simply said "Nope- I'm looking for Doug, and I think I've finally found him." I went up to Doug and said "Doug! It's me, Saam, the guy who always talk to you on ICQ and email." He said hello, nice to meet ya, and all that good stuff. Let me tell you, Doug is probably one of the nicest and most outgoing guys I have ever met. He demonstrated Thief for us, which I must say was perhaps THE game of E3. The 3D renderer was simply amazing, probably as good as the Quake2 based games and the Unreals of our time. However, Dark (I like to call it that) was more than a FPS (first-person shooter); the way you play the game is absolutely different than any other game I've ever played. Instead of killing left and right, you have to think more, and act more like a (what else?) Thief!

After an hour of playing Dark (which was in Alpha state), I talked to Doug a bit more about Dark and more importantly, Shock/System Shock 2. I told him how I knew that EA and LG were talking about publishing rights and other good stuff, but I really asked him "Will it be the official sequel?" He said "I'm not sure, it's up to EA." I later learn that he already knew the answer, as the next morning, EA issues a press release stating the development of System Shock 2 and other LG games. Okay, enough of the mumbo-jumbo; let's get to the good stuff. :)

System Shock 2, as you've probably guessed by now, is the "official" thing, baby! It has already been in development for quite some time now (about 5-6 months?), and it will of course use the Dark engine. There will be LG employees working on SS2, but a company by the name of Irrational Games will be the core developers. Why? Because the head of Irrational was one of the main programmers for System Shock, Rob "Xemu" Fermier. I didn't get a chance to see him at E3 (Doug told me he was there), so I'll try to contact him very shortly. Apparently, SS2 will be very true to the original, promising the same elements which made us gamers go crazy (for good, of course). Having seen the power of the Dark engine, I am pleased to announce that this should be THE game of the decade! As one LG staffer said, "The dead bodies and coke cans have already been implemented, so you should know by now what to expect..." Doug, unfortunately, won't be working much on SS2 for the moment since he's really leading the "crunch time" for Dark, but he should start doing some programming for it in the coming months. Also, I should be heading up to Massechusetts (LG headquarters) in a few weeks (invitation from Doug), so if I do indeed head up there, you can be sure I'll get a gander at a much-improved Dark, as well as my new all-time fav, System Shock 2. :)

On another note, doesn't the new redesign look rad? I sure think so. A big cheers goes out to my pal Dan for keeping the site warm and cozy while I was away at E3. What should I reward him with, a Laser Rapier? :) Expect more updates from me and Dan, as well as more design/content changes. Also, Dan and I have a small surprise for you, which we won't tell just yet, but you'll be very excited, trust me. :) Until then, keep re-playing System Shock, and make your mouth water for SS2, as it should be THE blast we all need!

May 29, 1998

EA to publish System Shock 2 - 1:08pm EST - Dan
I picked up this bit of news at What does this mean? My guess at this point is that System Shock 2 will be an "Official" sequal, continuing the System Shock story, rather than a Cyberpunk adventure in the System Shock style. Expect TONS more news to come as soon as Saam gets back from E3! (should be sunday night)

Today at the Electronic Entertainment Expo, Electronic Arts announced a distribution agreement with Looking Glass Studios. Under the agreement, EA will publish several titles that bear the Looking Glass brand.

The first two titles to be developed will be System Shock 2 and Flight Unlimited III. System Shock 2 will be a first-person 3D science fiction role-playing game; according to Looking Glass, System Shock 2 will "match the role-playing depth" of the original while incorporating advanced 3D graphics technologies and AI.

Flight Unlimited III will be the next title in their well-received series of FU games. Tom Frisina, vice president of Electronic Arts Distribution, said: "Looking Glass Studios has a rich history of developing superb PC entertainment software titles. They have created several of the game industry's best-liked franchises, including Ultima Underworld and the Flight Unlimited series. Because of their outstanding track record, we are extremely pleased with our co-publishing partnership and look forward to adding the Looking Glass brand to our roster of best-of-breed titles."

Paul Neurath, managing director of Looking Glass Studios, said: "EA's industry renowned marketing and worldwide distribution makes them the perfect publishing partner for System Shock 2 and Flight Unlimited III. We believe that working with Electronic Arts will allow us to maximize the reach of Looking Glass' products."

by Doug Radcliffe
May 29, 1998

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