A month ago, Larian Studios took to Kickstarter a second time, asking for $500,000 in order to fund development of a sequel to last year’s phenomenally popular old-school RPG, Divinity: Original Sin.
Some might wonder why, if Original Sin was so successful, did Larian seek to crowdfund the sequel? Divinity: Original Sin managed to shift over 500,000 copies in the three months after it was released in June 2014, after all, and no doubt plenty more copies have been sold in the 12 months since. Well, Larian said that the first game’s community input was key to its success. So important, in fact, that the studio wanted to ensure that the game’s sequel benefited from the same level of community involvement, and to see just how much support could be obtained in order to ensure that Original Sin 2 is as expansive and feature-packed as possible.
The answer, it turns out, is a lot. In fact, Larian Studios has managed to raise just over $2m to fund its sequel – more than 4 times the original goal of $500,000, and the developer has managed to reach every single one of the campaign’s stretch goals.
That means that when Original Sin 2 launches – currently expected to be sometime late next year – players will be able to enjoy racial skills, up to 3 additional companions (the first game only supported one), Undead as a playable race, a bevy of skill trees, dedicated mod support, and a Game Master mode, in which another player will have control over things like enemy placement, the abiliy to create dungeons, and manipulate the dungeon’s design and attributes in real time in order to make them more challenging. Larian said that Game Master mode goes “far beyond anything else we’ve tried in a Divinity game before”. RPG writing alumni and co-founder of Obsidian, Chris Avellone, has also joined Larian to provide writing duties on the sequel.
Original Sin 2 will use the same engine as its predecessor, but from the sound of it, Larian is determined to go above and beyond to ensure that the sequel isn’t simply more of the same. Judging by the quality of Original Sin, I’m inclined to believe them – and it seems plenty of other people are, too.
Divinity: Original Sin is current due to release late 2016 for PC. In the meantime, Divinity: Original Sin Enhanced Edition is scheduled to launch on PS4 and Xbox One – and as a free update to the PC version – on October 27th.