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The Bard's Tale IV: Barrows Deep is the latest The Bard's Tale sequel currently under development by inXile Entertainment. It was released on September 18, 2018 on PC, with a launch for PS4 and XBox One later in the year.

A 'Directors Cut' edition was released in August 2019, which featured enhanced options and interfaces (including an option to play "80's style" with grid-based movement and no automapping) as well as a number of bug fixes.

The Bard's Tale IV is a single-player, first-person fantasy RPG dungeon crawler set in Caith - a realm inspired by Scotland. Combat is turn-based strategy. Players will recruit a team of up to six heroes and set out to explore, solve puzzles, and conquer various dungeons.

Development[]

On the 30th anniversary of the release of the The Bard's Tale in 2015, the original game's co-designer Brian Fargo announced on Twitter that The Bard's Tale IV is in active development by inXile Entertainment and that it will be crowd-funded.

The abandoned 90s version[]

The next installment after The Bard's Tale III: Thief of Fate was never released. In 1992, there were rumours that Electronic Arts had been working on The Bard's Tale IV for two years already. The German computer game magazine Powerplay printed a preview article which included an interview with project manager Rick Lucas. According to Lucas, the game was going to be the largest RPG ever. They were thinking about producing it in two parts, similar to Origin's Ultima VII. Lucas talked also about the expansion of the Bard's Tale merchandise in form of novelisations, comic books and board games.

While the earlier games presented the surroundings in 3D in a small frame, only the dungeons of The Bard's Tale IV were to keep this design. The outside world was to be presented as a bird's-eye view, perhaps similar to Ultima VI and Ultima VII. The fights, however, were planned as 2D scenes.



Sources[]

  • "Bard's Tale 4", in: Powerplay 9/1992, pp. 22-23.
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