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FRONTIERS - Explore, Discover & Survive in a massive, relaxing open world that emulates the tone of classic first person RPGs.
FRONTIERS - Explore, Discover & Survive in a massive, relaxing open world that emulates the tone of classic first person RPGs.
4,574 backers pledged $157,381 to help bring this project to life.

Story Q&A this Sunday - Guest update by Ryan Span


Hello, everyone!

Story Q&A - Sunday 20th
:30pm PST / 6:30pm CST / 11:30am GMT

The internet is truly amazing. Apparently it's so advanced that we can all 'chat' in real-time using this thing called an Internet Chat Room (or 'IRC' as those in the know like to call it).

On Sunday Ryan and I will be doing a story Q&A in the Frontiers IRC. Want to participate (or maybe just eavesdrop)? It's as simple as clicking the link below and entering a nickname:


Prepare your questions ahead of time if you like! In fact, if you already have some you'd really like us to answer, feel free to post them here and we'll give them priority during the session.

See you on Sunday!

Guest Update - Ryan Span

(Previous Guest Updates - Erik Dinnel - Steve Barnes)

It all started a long, long time ago, in a barred spiral galaxy a little over thirty kiloparsecs in diameter, within the system of a G2-class main sequence star, on the surface of an oblate spheroid with an average orbital speed of around 30 kilometres per second...  

Well, it was actually May, but it seems like longer.

That was when I first heard of one Lars Simkins and his one-man mad-genius project of doom. I'd been working on Malevolence: The Sword of Ahkranox for almost a year, and with the majority of that work completed, I was starting to crave some new challenges. Then the name Frontiers appeared on my radar and it caught my attention in a big way. The strength of the concept and the obvious love being put into it made me believe in what was being created. There were even rumblings of an impending crowdfunding campaign, and I didn't doubt for a moment that it was going to do well on Kickstarter. (We won't mention the IndieGoGo debacle.)

Lastly, there was talk of writers being used as _writers_, not glorified level designers. My decision was practically made for me. I had to be on this team.

So I fired off an e-mail expressing my interest in Frontiers. I wasn't expecting anything -- this is a dream job for me, and you never count on getting your dream job. Two months later, I was on board. Two months after that, when Adi had to step away from the project, Lars offered me the lead writer position. Did not see that coming.

Since then I've worked hard, made good friends, and done my best to create a story which really plays to our strengths. One which allows you to explore as much as possible of the vast and beautiful world that's being created by the art team, yet doesn't neglect the 'story' part -- because we want Frontiers to please on every level.

Our goal is to create an experience which isn't 'epic' but instead deeply personal and free of cliché. If you want ancient evils, bombastic fight scenes, and characters you're expected to care about _just because_, you can get that anywhere. However, it's hard to find a game which concerns itself more with the story than the set pieces. When that starts to happen in a AAA title, the studio usually gets bought out by EA, and we all know what lies down that road.

That's why I love the indie game revolution and why I have every intention of making us a major player in strength of writing. If you finish Frontiers without caring one bit about Daniel Benneton, your own character, your friends or your enemies . . . Well, I can't imagine a bigger failure on my part.

Lastly, let me say a very personal thank-you to all the backers who have helped us make this vision a reality, and are still out there supporting indie games and developers all over Kickstarter. And undying thanks to Lars for being a developer who sees story not as a necessary evil, but as an opportunity to shine. I couldn't be more proud to be a part of this team.

- Ryan Span


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    1. Missing avatar

      Jon Oden on October 20, 2013

      I just realized how life has seemed to have gotten in the way of completing the botanist kit + book.. Is the deadline on that passed?

    2. Lars Simkins Creator on October 20, 2013

      Hey guys - just dropping in to mention that the correct GMT time is 11:30PM, not AM. My mistake. So I'll see you all there at 4:30pm PST / 6:30pm CST / 11:30>>PM<< GMT.

      (I'm going to play the flu card on this one too, probably the last time I'll get away with it...)

    3. Missing avatar

      HD on October 19, 2013

      There seems to be a main story; will the player experience that story as the backdrop to the world s/he explores or will he be the "main character" in that story?

      Which game would you say is the most alike in terms of how you will be telling the story of Frontiers, and in what way does that game differ in that respect from frontiers?

      Which is the single most annoying/infuriating thing for you in terms of story telling in games today, and how would you do it differently?

    4. Rob Taylor on October 19, 2013

      Can't wait for the transcript... if such a thing is possible. I work weekends and, regrettably, won't get to see this untold in real time or participate.

    5. Missing avatar

      Colin Glover on October 19, 2013

      Hah! And there I was thinking I won this one. I cry foul ref, but I suppose the judge's decision is final. Anyway, I'm afraid it sticks out like a sore thumb when using Opera's Links Panel, although after the last update I knew what to look for this time, so didn't need to resort to Opera. Looking forward to the next round.

    6. Lars Simkins Creator on October 19, 2013

      Speaking of cats: it looks like I've won another round of 'hide the kitten link.'

    7. Missing avatar

      Colin Glover on October 19, 2013

      Nope. It's Internet Relay Cat. Period.

    8. Dean Thrasher
      on October 18, 2013

      I'm really looking forward to Frontiers. Between this and the new Torment game, I'm hoping the indie scene can usher in a new era of RPGs that are about something more than dealing uber awesome damage to untold hordes of rat minions for no reason whatsoever.

    9. Jesse Dylan Watson on October 18, 2013

      This is a really exciting update. I didn't expect a "necessary evil" story, just a rather thin one. Obviously I can now see it is not going to be a thin story at all! I knew I'd "care" about this game, and have emotional involvement, simply because of the exploration and landscapes. I could tell that from the beginning. Now I see I'm going to be caring about a great deal more than just that. Indeed, a story that is not a "necessary evil but an opportunity to shine," and that is the one-two punch the best games have and the rest lack. One or the other is enough, but two together, whoa. Classics are born there.

    10. Cihan Deniz on October 18, 2013

      "Internet Relay Chat" sounds so ancient anyway. For all the time I've spent in IRC servers in 90s, I don't think I have ever learned the letters stood for.

    11. Lars Simkins Creator on October 18, 2013

      (Did I just one-up your twat-points score? I think I did)

    12. Lars Simkins Creator on October 18, 2013

      >IRC actually means Internet Relay Chat [not Internet Chat Room, which would be abbreviated 'ICR']

    13. Ninjy Tormented/OotG-KnCm/DrmTrvlr/WoOS on October 18, 2013

      "Those in the know" know that IRC actually means Internet Relay Chat.... and with that, I've used up my twat-points of today in one go. Apologies. :)