Former developers from Fortnite and Blizzard have joined forces to create Lightforge Games, a studio dedicated to developing a unique multiplayer RPG. Their upcoming game, currently codenamed Project ORCS (Online Roleplaying with Collaborative Storytelling), aims to combine the world-building and storytelling of traditional tabletop Dungeons & Dragons with the immersive experience of modern video games like Baldur’s Gate 3.

Project ORCS goes beyond existing online tools like Roll20 and Tabletop Simulator, which offer digital simulations of pen-and-paper roleplaying games. It introduces an editor mode that allows players to craft their own homebrew adventures or choose from premade campaigns developed by the game’s creators or other players. Up to five players can participate in a co-op RPG experience, with one player taking on the role of the Guide, similar to a dungeon master. The Guide can use the editor mode to create characters, environments, and encounters, either before the session or in real-time, reacting to the players’ actions, just like a DM would during an in-person game.

Players will have the opportunity to carefully customize their characters using a character creator. They can choose from a variety of classes and species, ensuring a unique and personalized gameplay experience. Similar to traditional D&D games, characters can level up through multiple quests and enhance their abilities. Additionally, players will have a home base that they can upgrade and expand, providing a sense of ownership and progression as they embark on their adventures.

Lightforge Games plans to incorporate guilds into Project ORCS, allowing players to form larger groups and share a world they have collectively built. This feature emphasizes the importance of collaboration and community within the game, providing an opportunity for players to engage in shared storytelling experiences.

The Impressive Visuals and User Interface

The reveal trailer for Project ORCS showcases its sleek and visually appealing design. Lightforge Games’ CEO, Matt Schembari, who previously worked as a lead engineer at Blizzard and UI director at Epic Games, brings his expertise to the forefront. The clean interface and seamless social interaction between players demonstrate the team’s commitment to creating an immersive and user-friendly experience.

Lightforge Games’ Vision

Matt Schembari expressed the studio’s ambitious vision for Project ORCS, stating, “We’ve set out to make a roleplaying experience that has never been attempted before in the games industry. We’re calling it a Collaborative Storytelling RPG or CSRPG. Project ORCS is a collaborative game that will give new and old RPG fans a way to create their own stories on an interactive canvas.” While the success of their endeavor is not yet certain, players will have the chance to see for themselves when Project ORCS enters early access later in 2024.

With Project ORCS, Lightforge Games aims to revolutionize the RPG genre by merging the immersive world-building of tabletop Dungeons & Dragons with the polished presentation of modern video games. By incorporating elements of collaborative storytelling and providing players with powerful tools to create their own adventures, Project ORCS offers a unique and exciting gaming experience. RPG enthusiasts and both new and old fans alike can look forward to exploring this innovative world when the game launches into early access later in 2024.

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