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Shadowrun Returns brings back one of our most original & cherished game settings as a 2D turn-based RPG for tablets & PC.
Shadowrun Returns brings back one of our most original & cherished game settings as a 2D turn-based RPG for tablets & PC.
36,276 backers pledged $1,836,447 to help bring this project to life.

It’s Happening

Posted by Harebrained Schemes LLC (Creator)
1 like

Here it is: The Official Release Date for Shadowrun Returns is July 25, 2013.

We know we’ve been saying June for some time, but now that we’ve reached this final stage of development, and although our Kickstarter funding was spent some time ago, we've decided to invest additional time in bugfixing and polishing the game. That means a longer crunch period for a tired team, but everyone agrees that it’s worth it.

One of the most common pieces of Backer feedback we've received over the past year is that we should take the time we need to ship this game. We really appreciate that, and we know we've thanked you already about a hundred times already, but we're doing it again because we mean it. Thanks.

You gifted us with your trust as well as your funding and we take that responsibility very seriously. You gave us the opportunity to contribute to something bigger than ourselves and something we think is worth all the time, sacrifice, and hard work. Soon, we’ll give it all back to you.

It’s amazing that this update is one of the last before Shadowrun Returns gets into your hands. It’s been an amazing adventure, and as we round the final corner and see the finish line in sight, we want to take a moment to reflect - not on how we got here, but on why we started in the first place.

For us, the mission has always been clear - we’re making Shadowrun Returns because we believe that after 24 years of tabletop, console, board, card, and action-figure games, plus all those novels, Shadowrun remains a rich, vibrant, and relevant setting to play and tell stories in and we want everyone to be able to share our love of it.

From the beginning, this whole thing has really been about a shared community experience.

  • Shadowrun itself is a shared world. For decades, tabletop Game Masters have been sharing their Shadowrun stories with players in their living rooms, novel authors have been sharing their Shadowrun stories with readers, Jake Armitage shared his own story in the Shadowrun SNES game, and so on.

  • Our Backers shared a belief in the project, the cost of development, and the year-long + experience of watching the game develop.

  • With the Shadowrun Returns Editor, everyone is empowered to author and share their own stories with the community, to support each other’s creativity, and to improve upon the work we’ve done to get things started.

  • We see our Seattle campaign, “The Dead Man’s Switch”, as the FIRST story of what we hope will be thousands of stories, rather than as THE story of Shadowrun Returns. When the game ships, you’ll have access to our entire Seattle campaign using the SRR Editor, allowing you to use it as a reference and starting point for your own stories. We hope that by sharing our campaign in this way, we’ll accelerate the growth of Shadowrun storytelling.

  • Harebrained Schemes, Catalyst Game Labs, and Cliffhanger Productions all share in the Year of Shadowrun and the management of the community website - a great communication hub and collaboration site for community created content.

Our approach to the project was inspired by our old-school tabletop roleplaying roots - we developed the World (the game systems and art), and the Rule Book (the Editor), and your first adventure (the Seattle campaign).

After the game ships, the power is in your hands. As we’ve said from the beginning, our Seattle story is just the beginning of what Shadowrun Returns can be and we are eager to see what this amazing community will create with the tools we’ve developed.

In fact, it's already happening. 

Backers with early access to the Shadowrun Editor are already building things that surprise and delight us after only two weeks since its release. Check out some of the cool stuff that’s surfaced so far (note that some placeholder art still exists in these videos):

A reverse of our Alpha Gameplay Video by McDougle

A scene by scene recreation of the Shadowrun SNES game by Ledeir 



A thread about The Lost Lamb Mission by Dislexicoder

Some images of cool maps for Deliver Me From Evil Module Conversion by Johnny_Memphis

Shadowrun Identity by Opifer  A call for participation in a full-length (100+ hours) community-made campaign. The goal is to recreate the world of Shadowrun using the original pen-and-paper sourcebooks, published adventures and novels. and

It’s incredibly rewarding to see these folks jumping in with both feet and charting a path for others to start their own creations when they get the game. A buzz runs through the studio when someone finds one of these links and passes it around to the rest of the team.

Oh, and before we go, we thought we’d leave you with these brand-spanking new screenshots of never-before-seen stuff. We hope you enjoy them! 


Important Note for Kickstarter Backers:

Your Steam key (for Windows & OSX) will be available a day early, on July 24th, from the HBS Accounts website, though the game will not activate until July 25th. (If you need help getting access to this site, contact On July 25th, you will also be able to download your DRM-free version of the game and all Kickstarter digital rewards directly from the HBS Account website. More information about physical rewards delivery will be forthcoming in a separate Kickstarter update.

Craig Makk likes this update.


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    1. Missing avatar

      Helge Saathoff on

      I just want to say thank you for releasing this game on my birthday. :)

    2. Missing avatar

      Gustaf Carstam on

      Heh, Reading about all these backer/fan projects makes me want to have a go at that editor :p

    3. Justin Casey McVay on

      i'm so pyched i just might pop

    4. alcaray on

      It is good for me that the community is getting into developing early content. The more they do now, before the expansion assets come out, the more community developed content I will be able to access, with my crippled version of Shadowrun.

    5. Missing avatar

      Nara on

      Just a quick question, since the game will be available on the Android, anything on wether they will try to port it to the ouya? Personally I'm happy with the Mac OS version, but since my roomy is getting a ouya a was simply wondering maybe if....

    6. Geof Aberhart on

      Never mind I'm calendar illiterate apparently

    7. Geof Aberhart on

      Um, so it's like almost the 25th and I still don't have a key or anything....

    8. Gabriel Gentile on

      @RC Wiz. Not I just need a HBS representative to okay the deal.

    9. RC on

      @Gabriel Sounds good to me, Chummer! Hopefully there won't be any game-breaking bugs, so everyone can enjoy the game and be in such a good mood we'll toss some extra nuyen at our favorite charities out of sheer joy ^_^

    10. Rafael Lopes Vivian on

      I mean the reverse alpha. ;-)

    11. Rafael Lopes Vivian on

      This gameplay footage shows a lot of point-blank shooting missing. Quite poor marksmanship.

    12. Gabriel Gentile on

      @RC Okay, suppose I modify the deal to "If you don't get reports of AT LEAST 10 bugs of 'game killer' level within the first week of release". Does that sound more reasonable to you?

      Keep in mind, if I lose, a charity benefits.

    13. Missing avatar

      Tom on

      Can't wait to see you guys at Gencon!

    14. Missing avatar


      Take your time. Push it back as far back as is necessary.

      Thanks for the update.

    15. RC on

      @Gabriel I was pointing out the type of bugs, not the number. Minor bugs that don't impact gameplay are a non-issue. Game stopping bugs, or bugs that significantly detract from our experience are what we should be concerned about, and due to the wide variety of hardware and software, only reproducible bugs, or bugs that affect a lot of chummers should count. One guy running some buggy software on his system that conflicts with the game shouldn't count as a "bug" against the devs. An incompatibility with a popular video card driver, should. If they launch with 5 broad game-stopping bugs, or 20 non-game-stopping but very distracting bugs, then I'd say they haven't met the challenge, though I'd give 'em a week to get 'em all patched, just to put the pressure on! ^_^

    16. Gabriel Gentile on

      @RC: Well, what do you think a fair number would be?
      @Vyvyiel: Gimme a break, willya? I'm not MADE of money! Besides I'm sure the charity wouldn't consider it too small.

    17. Missing avatar

      niklas dahlgren on gets on Android too? Rioght, time to buy it twice then.

    18. sevrlbats on

      sad day! I was aching for something to do with July. oh well. a year from now we'll remember the game that was released with a month's more polish, not the extra month we waited for it. =D

    19. Vyviel on

      Wow Gabriel $50!! Dont bet all your money at once or the casinos will invite you straight to the high roller lounge =P

      Your comment cracked me up thanks =)

    20. RC on

      @Gabriel I think the release date challenge is an idealistic and excellent concept, Chummer! The bug report challenge, perhaps a little unfair. If it's released without 200 (or even 20) reports of reproducible *game stopping* bugs, that might a fair challenge be to the devs, but this is just my opinion. I hope for the devs, us gamers, the shadowrun community at large, and of course the beneficiaries of said charities, that your challenges are met, and overcome! ^_^

    21. Missing avatar

      Robert Ellis on

      It looks really great. Take all the time you need.

      I'd rather you take the time and make it a great game and a financial success.

    22. Adam Sherman on

      But I wanna play!...naw take your time. :)

    23. Gabriel Gentile on

      Dear Harebrained Schemes,

      For once in my life, I'm going to put my deep sense of cynicism towards my beloved hobby of gaming to a GOOD use. I would like to propose the following wager with your company to which EVERY POSTER on this thread is a witness;

      If you do, in fact, manage to keep your promised release date of July 25 for "Shadowrun Returns", I shall make a $50 donation to any charity chosen by Mr. Jordan Weisman. Furthermore, if you do keep your promised release date and can manage to go through the first week of release without receiving AT LEAST 200 "bug reports", I shall donate an additional $50 towards said charity.

      To prove my sincerity, I plan to be in the Seattle/Tacoma area from July 4th through the 7th, and will GLADLY meet with representatives of your company to sign my name to any document legally binding me to this agreement.

      What you say chummer, have we got a deal?

      Gabriel C Gentile
      Las Vegas, NV

    24. Paul Chaplin (@CottlestonPie) on

      Another "+1 to the requests for an official statement on the Linux release"; I realise it will take time, but a rough idea would be nice. :) It's also really, really good to see HBS taking the time to polish the game before releasing it. Kudos, guys.

    25. Missing avatar

      Henri Clinch on

      Thanks for the detailed update, looking forward to kicking the tires.

    26. Missing avatar

      Japol on

      @Daniel Silva
      Thanks for your detailed and straight answer.
      The developers should have clear about these issues from the beginning and provide an answer such as yours in an update.Which i don't think they did.
      Instead all i get is ''this is not the scope of the game we had planned''

    27. Missing avatar

      Daniel Silvia on

      @Japol - They could have, but with the challenges of a full campaign integrating several different games styles to match the archetypes of Shadowrun, and the full integration of an editor into the game, it wasn't a high enough priority.

      1.8 million is not an astounding nor particularly robust budget for a professional development house. There are some things that will inevitably fall to the wayside. I, for instance, would like to have scripting functionality in the editor when it seems there will only be drop down menu options.

      The developers aren't trying to rob you or deflect concerns, but they did have to make hard choices based on limited resources. They could do anything, but every choice they make requires more manpower, extends the development cycle further out of budget, or intensifies the development crunch. More manpower costs more money which reduces the budget to spend, extending the development cycle means losing more capital beyond what the backers have given them, and a tougher development crunch means longer hours, harder work and sadly - higher risk of uncaught errors.

      I'm not trying to dismiss you, or say you don't have a right to be upset or disappointed. I only want to offer a reason why these things - which are indeed possible to implement - have not made the cut.

    28. Missing avatar

      Japol on

      @fredgiblet, Ben Schofield
      This guy created some form of persistent lootable corpses on his own.…
      And you are telling me that this and a proper save system is too difficult for the developers themselves with over a year in their hands?Give me a break

    29. Ber on

      Keep up the good work Harebrained. Clearly, you're passionate about your game! I hope there are lots more sales on release and your dedication to the game goes well (and profitably!) for you :)

    30. Missing avatar

      kwerboom on

      Its too bad that you exhausted the Kickstarter funding. I hope you are doing OK without it. I would hate to think that there are starving, homeless developers out there.

      That being said, I'm glad you are going to take the extra time to finish polishing the game and quashing any remaining obvious bugs. I've been a lurker just reading the updates, but, as a backer, I would just like to thank you for putting quality ahead of an artificial release date. Being an owner of "Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords", one of the most painful things I've experienced as a gamer is playing a rushed, crashy game with half the content missing.

    31. ET3D on

      It wasn't clear from this post, but googling showed me that the release date is also for the iOS and Android versions. I'll be checking Google Play on that date.

    32. KKegler on

      @That One Guy....You Sir win 5 internets!!

    33. Missing avatar

      iammacgyver on

      Looks rad guys, going to be awesome!

    34. Thadeus Dietzen on

      If you need more money to make it through, you should let me add extra t-shirts to my order as add ons!

    35. Missing avatar

      SteveW on

      +1 to the requests for an official statement on the Linux release

    36. Brent Shirkey on

      @ That One Guy

      Thanks, man! That made my day.

    37. James P. Wong on

      As a member of the gaming industry, I understand how so many (understated) personal sacrifices are made when developing a game. With the final stretch here, do what you guys and gals need to do to make for a great release. I might only be speaking for myself, but I can wait another month. I'm sure it will be worth the wait. Thanks so much for the update and I look forward to playing!

    38. David Harper on

      Nice to hear of a launch date. No worries about the delays - as many others have said, better to have a good game than an on-time release.

    39. Ohverture on

      All good. I'd rather a good game than a beta with Day 0 patches.

    40. Four on

      Eh, no worries on the delay. Make it as perfect as you can :)

    41. Ben Schofield on

      @Valery, you underestimate how difficult and expensive it is to make games. "Scope" is what a developer thinks is possible given constraints such as time and money. It's important to be realistic about scoping your game because you don't want to promise things you can't deliver. It's not that they just are choosing not to do things you want, it's that they can't do them given their funds and release schedule.

    42. Missing avatar

      David Finn on

      where do we send the pizza and mountain dew to, coders without their fuel can get grumpy!

    43. John Lucian Vanek on

      you guys already spent all the Kickstarter fund and still decided to delay the release date.
      I can only say.."Good job, love you guys!"

    44. whitegreyblack on

      I'm actually a huge fan of game delays before launch. It shows that the developer has the guts to hold off from short-term gain to enjoy long term gain, by further polishing their product. Plus, it gives me an extra month to go back and play the SNES & Genesis games! I'm pretty excited to see the final result.

    45. Missing avatar

      That One Guy on


      1. Why haven't you shared your source code, fire escape plan, payroll files, and email passwords with all backers? I GAVE YOU $5 SO I HAVE A RIGHT TO KNOW.

      2. I'm a twenty-one-year-old clerk at Best Buy, and my vast business experience makes me deeply suspicious about your motives in delaying the game. Don't try to tell me that you've already explained why and I should take you at face value -- I"M NOT STUPID U KNOW

      3. FTL is out already. Why isn't SRR? I SMELL MALFEASANCE.

      4. I am a hardcore lover of SR and knowing that you're not implementing the rules in every last detail fills me with wild, passionate fury (war in the middle east? famine? oppression? meh.) Obviously I PAID YOU to MAKE MY GAME.

      5. I like the date May 1st. The fact that your game didn't come out on my favorite date is OBSCENE.

      6. But really I love you and I love this game. Just "sharing" some "concerns", you filthy pigs.

    46. Missing avatar

      Dorchadas on

      The delay suits me just fine, because I'll be able to clear out more of my gaming backlog before this drops so I won't feel bad about playing it right away.

      Looking forward to it!

    47. Missing avatar

      Scelous on

      On the delay – no problem. Do what you need to do.

    48. Ryan "Keokuk" Smith on

      Nice to see you guys putting in some more work to get it to a great launch state.

      Nice to see those maps and the screenshots I've been hungry from some media on this :)

    49. Gabriel Gentile on

      SuuuuuUUUUUUUUuuuuure it is.

    50. Missing avatar

      Grenville Wilson on

      There are a lot of people who backed this who haven't read any of the updates, and aren't going to let their ignorance get in the way of complaints. There's also a lot of people who shouldn't be on Kickstarter, as they're approaching it like a store.