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Before Natural Selection, League of Legends and all those Defense of the Ancients clones, there was a game called Savage. The game was designed by a small studio named S2 Interactive and it featured real-time first or third-person action combat, RPG leveling mechanics and an overseer real-time strategy mode for battlefield commanders. The game was effectively the first 3D multiplayer RTS/FPS hybrid. Well, today, a small group of community modders have announced that they have officially released Savage XR 1.0, a complete overhaul of the original game made with all the amenities of today's gaming culture.
The original Savage: The Battle of Newerth was released back in the early 2000s and was basically a niche underground game. I was introduced to the title thanks to indie site Game Tunnel. It was a difficult game to play back in the day because of the steep PC requirements and the fact that it was way ahead of its time. Unfortunately, the game never really made it to mainstream audiences, despite a sequel being made and a small marketing campaign for the game being launched.
Fast forward to 2007 and some modders have decided to undertake the task of doing a total conversion of Savage for today's generation of gaming. All the blood, sweat and tears have paid off as Savage XR 1.0 has officially been released. It's always such a huge thing in the modding community with a large-as-a-whale's-stomach project manages to come to fruition and actually find an audience that appreciates it.
For those of you thinking “Oh no, this is probably some ugly looking piece of crap where the concept art looks like it was farted out of a bad batch of crayons from a five-year old.” you're thinking along the wrong lines, my friends. Savage XR 1.0 looks a lot better than the original thanks to an overhaul in models, textures and rigging, and a complete upscale in texture assets to help give the game a vibrant and current-gen feeling.
What's more is that the massive player-vs-player bouts have come back in full force with complete console commands, server administration options and plenty of customization to play the game the way you see fit.
It's a massive game so you'll want to start your downloading as soon as possible. It's also one of the rare quality titles from the previous gen that definitely deserves more attention than it originally received.
You can check out all of the work the modders put into the project to make the conversion possible by visiting the Official Newerth Forums. Download links for PC, Linux and Mac are also available via the forums.