After the success of Baldur’s Gate 3, many gamers are wondering if there’s a renaissance for “CRPG”-style isometric RPGs on the horizon. One game that stands out as a modernized CRPG is Pillars of Eternity, developed by Obsidian and led by Josh Sawyer. Recently, Sawyer joked on Twitter about waiting for Microsoft to call him and offer a $120 million budget for Pillars of Eternity 3. While it was a lighthearted comment, it raises an interesting prospect for CRPG fans.
Baldur’s Gate 3 was incredibly popular and challenged the idea of what types of games can find success in the current gaming landscape. In a time where many service games with microtransactions are being canceled, Baldur’s Gate 3 proved that there is still a strong demand for traditional isometric-style RPGs with high production values in terms of acting, writing, and visuals. This opens up the possibility for other franchises to follow suit and deliver similar experiences.
Microsoft and Xbox have a range of franchises that could fit the bill, but one that stands out is Obsidian’s Pillars of Eternity. This series is a modernized successor to classic CRPGs like Baldur’s Gate 1 and 2 and was initially crowdfunded on Kickstarter. However, despite being a great game, Pillars of Eternity II didn’t sell well. Obsidian attributed this to the traditional format of the game and may be why their next game, Avowed, is a more modern, first-person RPG.
But the success of Baldur’s Gate 3 offers a potential blueprint for Pillars of Eternity 3 to find success. If Microsoft were to provide a big-budget for a Pillars of Eternity game, it could potentially attract a new generation of traditional computer RPG fans. While it’s ultimately up to Xbox to decide, it’s worth considering if they would fund a sequel to games like Wasteland or Pillars of Eternity at a budget level similar to Baldur’s Gate 3.
As a fan of Pillars of Eternity and CRPGs in general, imagining what a big-budget Pillars of Eternity game could look like is tantalizing. The upcoming game Avowed looks promising, but it may not satisfy those who are seeking experiences similar to Baldur’s Gate. It would be exciting to see Microsoft invest in CRPGs and support their studios in creating these types of games.
So, if you haven’t played Pillars of Eternity yet, it’s definitely worth checking out. And let’s hope that Josh Sawyer’s joke turns into reality, and we get to see a Pillars of Eternity 3 with a significant budget. It would be a dream come true for CRPG fans.