Cult classic fantasy RPG remaster gets a free demo for Steam Next Fest

Geneforge 2 Infestation is a remake of the classic 2003 fantasy RPG, with vast amounts of choice and replayability, and a free demo is here.

Geneforge 2 - An emerald dragon rears up as lightning washes over its body.

The late ‘90s and early 2000s were a phenomenal time for CRPGs, bringing us the likes of Baldur’s Gate 2, the original Fallout, Icewind Dale, Vampire: The Masquerade Redemption, Planescape: Torment, and of course Divine Divinity, the first entry in the series that would bring Larian Studios to fame prior to making Baldur’s Gate 3. Among those, classic, beloved, but oft-overlooked 2003 fantasy RPG Geneforge 2 is making a grand return in 2024, and you’ll be able to try it this week courtesy of a free demo during Steam Next Fest.

Geneforge 2 Infestation comes from developer Spiderweb Software, and is a complete remaster of the 2003 game, a worthy contender among the best RPGs from my youth. Following on from a 2021 remaster of the first Geneforge and funded by Kickstarter backers to over double its initial $30,000 goal, this is an adventure that drops you into a fascinating fantasy world packed with nearly 90 zones to explore and a vast range of abilities to wield, factions to meet, and potential paths to follow.

You are a Shaper – one of a number of wizards with the ability to weave the fabric of life and creation itself. Create tools, armies, even mighty beasts, and they’re yours to use as you please. Or at least, that’s how it’s always gone in the past. But a rebellion is brewing, as the lost, escaped, or forgotten creations of the Shapers decide to turn against their former masters. It’s entirely up to you whether you choose to aid their cause or aim to crush it utterly.

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With all manner of factions to deal with, it’s up to you how you choose to play Geneforge 2. You can walk into battle using melee weapons, ranged or magical attacks, or indeed summon your very own horde of custom-made mutants to fight by your side. Or you can avoid combat altogether; make friends, deceive the oblivious, sneak past the inattentive, and perhaps you’ll be able to succeed without ever making a direct attack.

The remastered Geneforge 2 Infestation includes “new areas, quests, characters, and dialogue, a redone interface and systems, and a complete reworking of every single thing to bring it into the modern era of gaming.” That means it’s the ideal way to explore the fascinatingly different permutations that each adventure can create – if seeing how varied Baldur’s Gate 3 playthroughs can be gets you as excited as it does for me, then you’ll definitely want to check Geneforge 2 out.

In even better news, you won’t have to wait long to do so. Ahead of its planned Steam release date of Tuesday March 27, you can try Geneforge 2 Infestation this week courtesy of a free demo available throughout Steam Next Fest, which runs Monday February 5 to Monday February 12. Just head to the Steam page to check it out or add it to your wishlist.

If you’re on the lookout for more of the best games like Baldur’s Gate 3, we’ve picked out some favorites, and of course we’ve also selected the best old games you can still play in 2024 as well.

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