At the end of August this year, developer Ossian Studios announced that they were creating a new 3D Western-style RPG for the iOS platform called The Shadow Sun. At the time, there was no indication of what the game would be like beyond a short text description provided on the developer's website. However, given Ossian's previous involvement in the Neverwinter Nights series and the fact that studio head Alan Miranda was producer of Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal, there was definitely plenty of reason to get excited with that kind of RPG pedigree behind the project.

Now, just a little more than a month later, Ossian is finally ready to give players a peek at the world that they've been creating, as they have just sent over the first screens of The Shadow Sun.

The Shadow Sun will take place in a fully 3D world centered around an imperial city called Shar. Tensions between the inhabitants of this world run high, and beyond the outskirts of the civilized cities lie unknown dangers. Aliens have somehow tampered with the planet's sun, causing an ever-increasing shadow to encroach across the lands with horrible consequences. Ossian notes that they are aiming for the high adventure of the Dungeons & Dragons series, real-time combat inspired by games like Fable, The Legend of Zelda series, and The Witcher, and an element of sci-fi horror in the style of author H.P. Lovecraft. Here are some other key features as detailed by the developer, and a gallery of additional screenshots (click to enlarge):

  • Enter a story full of complex characters, intrigue, danger, and shocking surprises.
  • Explore the decadent imperial city of Shar and the exotic desert lands around it.
  • Battle enemies using magical powers and dozens of weapons.
  • Play as male or female with a character system that allows you to evolve your character’s abilities exactly how you want.
  • Ally with one of several companions to adventure with and fight alongside.
  • Make your role-playing choices wisely through dialogue or action, and become either a hero or a villain.

These early screens look gorgeous, and have me really excited to see more of The Shadow Sun. The iOS platform has already proven to be a rich resource for great role-playing games of all kinds, and Ossian Studios is claiming that The Shadow Sun will redefine the genre on the platform. That sounds like a mighty claim, but based on their background in RPGs and these stunning screenshots, it's certainly within the realm of possibility. The release date doesn't get more specific that "late 2010", but a discussion about the game has begun in our forums and we'll of course bring you more information on The Shadow Sun as we get it.

  • Rylin

    I know I'll enjoy this game as much as the next person and we definitely need more competition in this open-world rpg genre :) but I wish developers would bring more sci-fi games to the platform. I guess we'll never get tired of playing fantasy games eh?

    • Zachandthedog

      Yes I would love to see a scifi rpg. Fantasy RPGs get old after awhile because they all have the same general premises.

  • Josef

    I simply cannot believe how far mobile platforms have come, this looks awesome. I am still not convinced that real-time action is the most suitable for a touchscreen in the RPG genre, though. Let's see how they manage to nail the controls in this one...

    • E_Domina

      I agree. Real Time RPGs don't work the best on the touch screen but, you never know

      • Kennethbom

        crescent moon did it with aralon sword and shadow! and it worked bretty good! they even build in both 3 person and first person views, and both control sceams worked just fine!

  • Marek

    This looks and sounds incredible! I'm really excited again ^^ Aralon, Dungeon Hunter 2, this, what a great late 2010
    Hopefully they go with the normal Controls for 3D-games on this platform, I think most of us got used to it now ;)

  • http://twitter.com/Inaba_kun Phil Baxter

    Good to see developers finally using pixel shaders in iPhone games.

    I wish we'd get more full on 3D RPGs on the iPhone. Where are the ports of Crisis Core, Dragon Quest 9, or Kingdom Hearts?

  • Noman

    Holy ****! That looks incredible!

  • GodSon

    Insta-buy sums this one up! ;)

  • JadeBlakeArt

    OMG OMG OMG!!!
    I'm a huge fan of all the franchises listed including Lovecraft.
    This game looks amazing from what the screens show. And the story seems pretty different, so that's a huge plus for me.

  • JadeBlakeArt

    OMG OMG OMG!!!
    I'm a huge fan of all the franchises listed including Lovecraft.
    This game looks amazing from what the screens show. And the story seems pretty different, so that's a huge plus for me.

  • Buklau

    Meh, I wouldn't say it looks "incredible". I mean after epic citadel that looks alright. Look closely at the screenshots and you'll notice alot of 2d sprites are used for the graphics. Look at the elephant, its not in 3d and is most likely a flat image that will rotate as you move the camera. Better than a lot of stuff artistically on the appstore

    • Joel

      No, the elephant is in 3D. But I agree, there's nothing amazing going on here. For the most part the nice look is down to the lightmapping.

      • Buklau

        I'm pretty sure it's not.

      • Joel

        As a 3D guy, I'm pretty confident it is. And if by some miracle it isn't, then this game is something I wouldn't touch with a 50ft barge pole.

  • tsharpfilm

    I'm so glad more developers are moving away from that cheesy SNES RPG looking stuff. This looks AMAZING!

  • Howard

    iPhone 4 only?

    We wouldn't be getting games like this if it wasn't for Ravensword! Thanks Josh and Russ!! :)

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Phillip-Alan-Platt/615720757 Phillip Alan Platt

      Why would it be 4 only? The 3gs is plenty powerful enough for it, considering the lower resolution and that the 3gs has the same GPU.

  • Tikicobra

    Does it run on the 3GS?

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Phillip-Alan-Platt/615720757 Phillip Alan Platt

      Hmm, there wouldn't be any reason it couldn't other than developer desire to exclude 3gs owners and piss people off. The power is certainly there to run anything the iPhone 4 can since they use the same GPU and the 3gs has a lower resolution screen.

      I must say it is really nice to finally see a nice game that is leaving the very obsolete 2g/3g/itouch 2g behind. Yeah, it sucks for people stuck with those devices, but it sucks way more to have our new devices have gimped games just to support ancient (in the mobile world) devices. Besides, they need reasons to upgrade after all. :D

  • http://proverbialmonkey.co.uk Damian Poole

    While the graphics look incredible, there hasn't been a single game where the controls match this kind of graphics, it's always too complicated or faffy.

    Personally I think developers should concentrate more on turn based RPG's instead of real time ones...

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Phillip-Alan-Platt/615720757 Phillip Alan Platt

      Yeah, it is always a little awkward, but I have never played a game that I didn't get used to the controls pretty quickly (except for Duke 3d, guh, just awful).

  • G@merG1rl

    Sweet!!!

    Now to see which will come out first... This or Aralon

  • Booch138

    Hrm. "Late 2010" is over =(