If you know who George Ziets is, you probably know him for his role as the Creative Lead in the development of Neverwinter Nights 2: Mask of the Betrayer, an expansion that in some ways superseded the base game in terms of unique worldbuilding and a more engaging questline.
We interviewed Ziets last year for our feature on the 15th anniversary of Obsidian Entertainment, and he discussed what the experience of designing Mask of the Betrayer was like.
Mask of the Betrayer was a very unusual situation. Financial expectations were low, and it had a fairly low budget. As a result, the project flew under most people’s radar, which meant little or no involvement from publishers or executives. (One notable exception was Chris Avellone, who was very supportive of what we were doing and ended up writing two of our companions.) It felt like [producer] Kevin [Saunders] and I were able to do whatever we wanted, as long as we stayed under budget. I didn’t realize at the time how rare that was, and although my design for the narrative was ambitious, and it led me to put in a lot of very long hours, taking advantage of that opportunity was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I’m proud of what we accomplished.
This week, Ziets appeared on gaming historian Matt Barton's YouTube channel to talk about his new independent studio, Digimancy Entertainment.
As Ziets says in the interview, Digimancy Entertainment will develop RPGs and RPG-hybrids, with a focus on unique narratives. For now, the studio will focus on original settings and new IPs, but Ziets says he's also very interested in existing IPs, particularly Dungeons & Dragons campaign settings such as Ravenloft, Dark Sun, Dragonlance, and so on.
According to Ziets' LinkedIn profile, he is the Creative Director and Co-owner of Digimancy Entertainment. He didn't mention in the interview who the other owner(s) would be, but he talked about the possibility of remote developers who would be excited to work with Digimancy Entertainment in developing the kind of RPGs Ziets envisions.
Ziets's final RPG with inXile Entertainment is Wasteland 3, which is due to release in 2020. You can check our enthusiastic preview here.
Are you looking forward to Digimancy Entertainment's games? Are you hoping for a game in any particular D&D setting? Leave your comments below!