In their latest monthly update on Kickstarter, Nightdive Studios announce that they are hoping to release their remaster of ‘90s sci-fi shooter System Shock “by Q2 of 2018”. This is later than their first estimated release date, of December 2017.
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The latest update confirms that the Nightdive team have entered Vertical Slice, a phase of game development in which a short section of the game is produced with most gameplay features in place (imagine the game as a sausage, and slice it vertically to produce a small, relatively complete piece). VS can help the team to estimate development timelines and refine objectives.
“By the end of VS, we’ll have a better understanding of what we can achieve with the time/budget we have, and have a more accurate plan moving forward to create a quality game.”
VS is also helpful for demonstrating the game, and accordingly, Nightdive say they “will have some awesome stuff to show in the coming months”.
You can download a demo, which Nightdive emphasise is "very very very very early", of System Shock via its Steam page, where you'll notice that the release date is still given as "Holiday 2017" (at time of writing). You can also check out a video and a few screens.
For the unfamiliar, 1994's System Shock was one of the first story-driven shooters to set the mould for today's "immersive sim" genre. The player explores a space station after a terrible disaster, contending with mutants, cyborgs and a malevolent AI. Its 1999 sequel was the first title by Irrational Games, who would later make 'spiritual successor' BioShock.