The long-awaited sequel to a series that helped set the tone for fantasy RPGs and dungeon crawlers as we know is available today on PC and that game is The Bard’s Tale 4: Barrows Deep. Arriving just in time to celebrate its 30th anniversary, it’s a come up story only made possible by a Kickstarter campaign that amassed over 30,000 backers and $1,500,000 in funding.
The developers inXile Entertainment have a history of successfully launching niche video games using the crowdfunding platform, releasing titles such as Torment: Tides of Numenera and Wasteland 2 to great critical acclaim. It’s a feat not easily achieved by developers on Kickstarter but if you take a moment to look at The Bard’s Tale 4: Barrows Deep’s Kickstarter page, you’ll start to understand why inXile gets such enthusiastic support from its fans.
From meaningful pledges and motivational stretch goals to candid developer updates and a near unrestrictive say in the outcome of the game for its backers, you can tell there’s a meticulous amount of detail and passion poured into their games, and the same can be said for The Bard’s Tale 4.
It brings with it a true single-player, party-based role-playing experience, filled with scenic exploration, intricate dungeons, dynamic combat, and over 40 hours of challenging tactical gameplay. There are four archetypes to choose from that include Bard, Rogue, Fighter, and Practitioner. When combined, they all have the potential to unlock up to 21 different classes with each possessing about 65 skills.
You can handpick a total of six heroes to join you on your journey against the evil that looms in Caith (a location that the series has visited before) where you’ll level up your party, suit them in the strongest weapons and gear, and even summon the help of beasts — in The Bard’s Tale 4: Barrows Deep it’s all about feeling like you have a hand in the outcome of your story.
It goes without saying that The Bard’s Tale 4 isn’t a game for everyone but that’s what makes its Kickstarter success so remarkable. With such a loyal and supportive following of backers, inXile Entertainment was able to launch not just one but three games, and according to CEO Brian Fargo, if the game does well then the revival of his first company, Interplay Productions, might be on the table.
I’m asked what would we do if Bard’s Tale 4 PC is a big hit.
How about this stretch goal. I will attempt to buy Interplay back if we manage to sell over 2 million units in the first 18 months.
— Brian Fargo (@BrianFargo) September 17, 2018
The Bard’s Tale 4: Barrows Deep releases today for Windows PC on Steam and will be available for Mac and Linux platforms in the very near future.