Looks Like Interplay Is Bringing Back The Studio That Made Fallout

It seems like Black Isle, the game studio behind RPG classics like Fallout and Planescape: Torment, is making some sort of comeback.

An official website for the new Black Isle popped up today, as did Facebook and Twitter pages (as spotted by the folks on NeoGAF). The website appears to have been registered by Interplay, the company that owned Black Isle back in the late 90s — and shut it down in 2003.

The elephant in the room here is that as far as we know, all of the people who used to work at Black Isle — talented video game designers like Feargus Urquhart and Chris Avellone — are now elsewhere. Some are at Obsidian, the company behind games like Fallout: New Vegas and Knights of the Old Republic II, while others are at inXile, the newly-formed studio that is currently working on crowdfunded RPG Wasteland 2.

Interplay also recently lost all rights to develop a Fallout MMORPG.

So what would a new Black Isle look like? What would they work on? A banner on the new website reads: "Our goal has always been to make the world's best RPGs. Black Isle Studios is back." But can they really be "back" with none of the talent that made those RPGs great? Have they brought back some of that talent?

I've reached out to the email address listed on the new Black Isle website for comment and will update should I hear anything.

Update: Avellone says he isn't involved:


    I can't help but be cynical about this. Like splashing "Bioware" on unrelated companies.

      Given that the BioWare name is - in my eyes, at least - irreparably damaged, this may just be an attempt to revive an old brand that was once synonymous with great CRPGs.
      They'll release a new IP first, and it'll be a bit sketchy, but we'll give them time. Then they'll announce a sequel to MDK or something that taps into our nostalgia, and we'll get excited. And it will be a Sin against Humanity. And we'll wonder why we keep letting ourselves get burned like that.

    Yawn, yet another Kickstarter project utilising a brand name incoming.

    Screw this. I want troika back with a sequel to arcanum!!!!!

      I would Kickstart the hell out of a new Arcanum.

        Only if Obsidian was working on it. This new not-Black Isle doesn't instil any faith in me.

        So would I!!!

      Trioka anything would be a blessing.

        I wonder why this hasn't happened? I think Activision now owns the rights to Arcanum though :(

    I got excited for a second there. Only a second

    How will this revived Black Isle studio interact with BeamDog, who recruited a bunch of the Black Isle staff to work on Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition - are they planning to pinch the staff back [or have they already done so]?

    Update: BeamDog not currently affiliated with the new Black Isle Studios:

    This just in: I'm starting a new company called Epic Megagames and we're making a new sequel to One Must Fall 2097 and Jazz Jackrabbit. We are not affiliated with Epic Games, and there's no reason to assume the games will actually be any good, but I think I hear your nostalgia jimmes being rustled.

      What form will these new OMF & JJ games be? Facebook game & gritty modern FPS respectively?

      OMG, One Must Fall as a gritty mech FPS?! TAKE ALL MY MONEY!

    Ahh its another Atari then. A completely different person wandering around in a dead skin mask of an old friend and expecting hugs...

    Forgive me if I remain a cynical hug miser

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