System Shock 3! pic.twitter.com/qJ4UDRUuPw
— OtherSide (@OtherSide_Games) December 14, 2015
The domain initially leads to a now-expired countdown page with a large number 3 as well as the phrases “she’s back” and “Are you ready to revel in my magnificence, hacker?”. The website subsequently transitions to a splash page with an image of the titular System Shock villain Shodan in the background.
A link on the splash page imploring readers to “Sign up for promotions + updates” leads to a survey where participants will have a chance to win a limited edition SHODAN print by Robb Waters, a concept artist who has previously worked with the System Shock series. Sixteen people who respond to the survey will win a print – one for every year since System Shock 2 was released.
There is also a playable sound file that contains a garbled voice saying “Did you think I’d forgotten you, insect?” The style further suggests that Shodan will again be returning as a villain in System Shock 3.
System Shock and System Shock 2 are considered by many to be classic games of the era for a variety of reasons. The characterization of the villainous AI Shodan has led some such as Mikel Reparaz to consider her as a precursor to Portal’s GLADOS. The story had a mix of cyberpunk and horror elements. The predecessors were shooters but they nonetheless had a strong RPG element to them as well.
Otherside Entertainment is a relatively new studio as a business entity. However, they have a successful Kickstarter for a spiritual successor to the 1992 title Ultima Underworld called Underworld Ascendant. According to the Kickstarter page, Otherside Entertainment is comprised of people who had experience working on System Shock, Thief, Dishonored, Bioshock Infinite, and Last of Us.
I haven’t yet played System Shock or System Shock 2, but looking over some of the mechanics makes me excited for what possibilities System Shock 3 may offer. However, I’m concerned about how the series may be watered down in terms of its mechanics as we’ve seen happen with so many reboots of classic franchises such as Thief. We’ll have to wait and see. If Otherside Entertainment does things right we could have a modern classic on our hands.
Did you play System Shock or System Shock 2? Do you feel the spiritual successor Bioshock lived up to the legacy of System Shock? Let us know in the comments below!