Larian - Skirting Bankruptcy & Making D:OS2
Founder Swen Vincke picks 1997 as the year when Larian started, and an RTS called LED Wars as the studio’s first game, though there had been some experiments and projects before that. Indeed, one of them, The Lady, the Mage and the Knight, had many of the hallmarks of today’s Original Sin series, 20 years before it made its debut.
“It was an RPG where you controlled three characters and could play in multiplayer,” Vincke explains. “It had all of the values of Ultima VII, which you can recognise today in Original Sin. But we were having a hard time signing it with a publisher, so we decided to make an RTS because everyone was making them and everyone was looking for them. It seemed to be an easy way to make some money.”
Once the Enhanced Edition was finished, work on Original Sin 2 began in earnest, and Larian quickly tripled in size. "Original Sin 2 was the first time where we had sufficient resources to do everything well, and even then we had to scramble," recalls Swen Vincke, Larian’s founder. "We had some growing pains. We grew in one year from 40 people to 130, so that was quite a challenge to manage. We went from one studio in Belgium to four international studios working on the same game."
A lot of the new members of the team hadn't made a game before, including several writers. Vincke wanted to bring in screenwriters from outside Larian to help with dialogue, but they had to learn an entirely new way of doing things.