Electronic Arts and BioWare Austin have announced Shadow Realms, a multiplayer game with persistent roleplaying elements. Players will take the role of either four customized adventurers with special powers fighting for the forces of goodness, or the evil Shadowlord as part of the highly original-sounding Shadow Legion. Characters will build experience and progress over the course of the episodic narrative. Jeff Hickman, general manager of BioWare Austin, likened the game’s 4v1 structure to old-school roleplaying games like Dungeons & Dragons.
“This game brings us back to our roots in the realm of classic Pen and Paper RPG, but also delivers something that’s completely new and innovative for our fans.”
The Shadowlord player controls creatures, sets traps, and will cast spells to antagonize the hero characters. While it’s not a full “dungeon master” experience since BioWare ultimately controls the storyline, it may offer more opportunity for bad guy roleplaying than Mass Effect.