I realize in most of the rest of the free world Thanksgiving isn’t that big a deal. Here in the States, it is, and not just as a celebration of people managing to make it to the country where we now live without getting themselves killed, but as a chance to take time out to be thankful for what we have and to be with friends and family. So in that spirit, here is a list of things we are thankful for this Thanksgiving:
Mark Lampert, Sound Designer: I’m thankful to be in good health and working here on games like Fallout 3 and the Elder Scrolls series. It’s a lot of responsibility and folks here have seen fit to leave me at the wheel, so it’s an honor.
Jared Angus, QA Tester: I am thankful for my good health, my great job, my supporting family, and most of all my beautiful wonderful fiancÃ©e.
Nathan McDyer: I’m thankful that after almost 2 years I’m still on my first 360.
Ricardo Gonzalez, Programmer: Things For Which I’m Thankful ( In No Particular Order ): This sweet gig, breakpoints, corporeal existence, cranberry sauce, quiet purring, the color grey, whomever makes that nice-smelling stuff my wife spritzes in her hair, Chipotleâ„¢, the human capacity for irony, video games of all shapes, sizes, and depths, and everything good I’ve got that I never asked for, which is pretty much everything.
Alan Nanes, Designer – I am thankful for my two kids and my wife who put up with my crazy work schedule in the pursuit of making games.
Gary Noonan, Character Animator: Life, Family, Friends, Starbucks, and gov’t holidays when traffic is light.
Joel Burgess, Level Designer: I’m thankful to get to work on games that are important to me, with such an amazing group of talented folks. Also for the support of family, both new and old, without which I’d never have gotten here. Mr & Mrs Smith, and all the other friends who mean so much. And German confections. Sometimes, I’m thankful for German chocolate and candies most of all.
Emil Pagliarulo, Designer: When I look at my life, there are two things I’m incredibly thankful for: 1.) My family. I’ve got an amazing wife who really understands me and accepts the fact that I’m a big child. Which is even more impressive, considering she’s got four other real kids to take care of! My children â€“ Cullen (8), Cormac (5), Conall (3), and Brenna (3) â€“ are my whole world, and everything I do, I do for them. They’re my font of happiness. 2.) My job. I’m lead designer of Fallout 3. Ha! How ridiculous is that? I spoke at my son’s elementary school career day a few months back, and it didn’t take the kids long to realize I had the coolest job of anyone who had ever lived. They’re right, and pretty much every day I think God I’m not moving refrigerators in an electronics warehouse, working security in a history museum, or substitute teaching. â€˜Cause I’ve had all those jobs, and they all sucked.
Ruben Brown, QA Project Lead. I am thankful that we’re not in OT crunch while rolling into December.
Megan Sawyer, Environment Artist: Currently, I’m so very thankful for my ipod full of music and my $15 Sennheiser headphones that block out pretty much all noise, even construction noises and excited coworkers! This is in addition to what I’m always thankful for – my awesome family and friends, and the job that I love.
Gavin Carter, Producer: Having a career in gaming versus whatever pit they condemn English majors to otherwise Getting to work and create in the Fallout world every day. Awesome department producers who make my life 300x easier. 3PM Starbucks runs. Neo-GAF NPD sales threads. Penny-Arcade three days a week. Lots of big fall releases and a four-day weekend to finally make some real progress with them.
Matt Ouzounian, Quite Appreciative: Starbucks’ Peppermint Mocha Lattes (though inferior to Pumpkin Spice Lattes), the fact that this season of Heroes is getting better, Dogfish Head. I suppose I should say family and friends here, right? With Mass Effect, though, NPCs will pretend to be my friends, which is just as good. Lesbian romances here I come!
Phil “PhilSucks” Nelson, Level Designer: A bad ass Team Fortress team (V101 Represent), Rockband, Adidas Three Stripe Sneakers, getting to work with great friends again, Rockband, my family is pretty great, Dexter, bacon, Rockband… and theres something im missing… oh yeah, Rockband.
Ashley Cheng, Producer: I’m thankful for my dream job where I work on projects that people are passionate about with an incredibly talented and hard working team. Also, thanks to anyone who has ever bought a game we’ve made.
Daniel Geske, QA: Life, running water, sports, and games. Everything else is just filler.
Todd Howard: Thankful to be surrounded by so many exceptional people here at Bethesda, and to be working at one of the last remaining independent developers/publishers. I think we take for granted sometimes how lucky we are to be working on such amazing games and to have so many people outside the company who care about them.
Rob Havlovick, IT: It’s sappy, but I’m thankful for every person that enjoys our games and supports our company. It’s nice to have IT problems like “oh no, too many people are trying to download the teaser!”, or, “the forums are too busy!”
Pete Hines: I’m thankful for my family, the people I work with, the job I have, college football on a beautiful autumn day, premiership soccer when it’s cold and raining, Chick-Fil-A, that there’s a day where eating turkey and stuffing is practically required and watching football on TV is strongly encouraged, people like you that continue to buy games and support us and developers everywhere.
Angela Browder, Associate Producer: I am thankful I do not have to wear a suit to work.
Fred Zeleny, Quest Designer: The usual, vitally important things: life, love, family, friends, health, games, and so forth. And for the obvious: being able to work on an RPG as rich and enjoyable as Fallout. And finally, for the humble paper clip, that flexible cornerstone of offices and odd craft-projects everywhere.
Matt Grandstaff: On top of all the standard stuff (family, friends, etc.), here’s what I’m thankful for in 2007: My fantastic new job at Bethesda, a new (and practically free) Radiohead album, a new football coach coming soon to the Wolverines, Cherry Coke Zero, great games like Everyday Shooter and Bioshock, and the fact that the NFL still lets me watch the Lions every Thanksgiving.