Around the Web: Erik talks about maturing

No, this isn’t like that episode of the Brady Bunch where Peter sings “Time to Change.” Designer Erik J. Caponi is talking about “mature games” in a new Kotaku feature “Growing Up Games: When Will Mature, Mature?” Here’s a snippet of him discussing different definitions of what a mature game is:

“The word really has two meanings when we apply it to media. One is ‘not appropriate for children’ and the other is ‘exploring subject matter in a sophisticated fashion,’” Caponi explains. “Ironically, the word mature when applied to games tends to have a very childish connotation.”

Elsewhere, be sure to also read CG Society’s new interview with Fallout 3 Environment Artist Rashad Redic — previously featured here for Inside the Vault. Given that the interview comes post-release, you’ll get a chance to learn a little more about Rashad’s role and what he worked on for Fallout 3. Here’s an excerpt:

In what ways did you take Fallout3′s day/night cycle into consideration, so that your work looked consistently good in all the various light models and times of day?

Rashad: We use these full screen image processes similar to how film is tinted to color grade our environments, and we actually spent a lot of time tweaking the day and night cycles along with these image processes to give us the look we wanted. In our editor you can scrub through the different times of day and see how the color shifts affect the art, and we were very mindful of our color palette and art style throughout that process.

I guess I missed it when I put up Pete’s Gametrailers interview from D.I.C.E., but there’s also a new one with Todd. Watch it above.

More news after the break…

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March Mayhem 2009

While Pete, Ash and I cheer on our teams (that’s Wake Forest, Maryland, and Michigan) in this year’s 2009 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, you can participate in The Escapist’s 2009 March Mayhem Developer’s Showdown. Registered members to the site can vote for their favorite developers each week.

The (return) Road to the Final Four for our studio begins with stiff competition: Call of Duty: World at War developer, Treyarch Studios. We’re listed as a #5 seed, and if you follow college basketball, you know that the seed mostly prone to being upset.

Voting begins tomorrow. Head to the Escapist for more details.  Good luck to all the developers.

Around the web: Updates on The Pitt

Here’s another round of web updates.

While at D.I.C.E., Pete took time to do an interview with Game Trailers. You can watch it above.

Additionally, both VG247 and Totally 360 spoke with Jeff about the DLC. Here’s a look at the latter interview:

The effect of entering Oasis or Operation: Anchorage was quite powerful given what a radical change it was from the Capital Wasteland, can we expect something similar here?

Jeff: The Pitt itself is the vision of several developers who grew up in Pittsburgh.  It’s full of unique architecture that has a different color pallet and feel from downtown D.C.  The buildings are decrepit, but still intact.  The Raider area is filled with their usual displays of disemboweled corpses and spray paint.  Perhaps the most striking part of the Pitt is the bridge that leads into it and the ominous black smog that erupts from the still working Steel Mill.

Finally, Pete was interviewed on Sports Byline, a national sports radio station, to discuss Fallout 3 on their Video Game Review segment. You can listen below.

Weekend Update: The Pitt trailer at Gametrailers

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As previously mentioned, the trailer for The Pitt debuted on Gametrailers TV late on Friday night. If you haven’t checked it out, it’s now up on their site.

Moving on to other news, nominees for the ELAN Awards have been announced with Fallout 3 receiving nods in the following categories: Videogame of the Year, Best Console Game, Best PC Game, Best Sound in a Videogame Production, Best Art Direction, Best Game Design, and Outstanding Technical Direction.

At PSDTUTS, both Fallout 3 and Oblivion were included in a list of the Top 40 Video Game Covers of All Time.

Finally, Canadian site Game Focus has a new interview with Pete that went up today. Here’s a snippet:

What mistakes and triumphs did Bethesda learned from Oblivion that helped you with Fallout 3?

A lot of it was learning about the big, open-ended experience. What kinds of things did people like or not like? How do we do that better, and different, in the Fallout universe. Technically we learned a lot about how to make the game run better on all these platforms, but much of it comes from the player experience and what they can do, and see, from moment to moment. I’m sure we’ll learn a lot from Fallout 3 we can put into our next project.

That’s all for now. Enjoy what’s left of your weekend.

What we’re playing

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This week’s edition of “What We’re Playing” comes late into the weekend after yours truly spent most of the weekend watching college basketball and crossing his fingers that his alma mater would make the “Big Dance.” Now that they’re in, I can relax and play Peggle.

Here’s the games we’re playing

Chris Esko, Gameplay Programmer: Mirror’s Edge, Puzzle Quest: Galactrix, Peggle.

Fred Zeleny, Agent Z: Rock Band 2, Puzzle Quest: Galactrix, and House of the Dead: Overkill, which is the best purchase I’ve ever made for my Wii, and makes me happy I can play it with one hand, so I can keep a bottle of whiskey in the other.

Pete Hines: Dawn of War II, Fire Emblem DS, something new for 360…TBD

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New at Planet Fallout

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Just a few things you might be interested in at Planet Fallout.

The staff have a new interview with DLC Producer Jeff Gardiner. Here’s a quick look:

We heard there will be an Arena, Mad Max style. Can you tell us more about that part of the DLC?

Jeff : At a certain point in the quest the player will have to prove their worth and fight a series of battles in the Pitt, a fighting area situated underneath the Steel Mill. Raiders climb the fence above the pitt as the player is challenged variety of foes. Each fight starts with barrels of toxic radiation being dropped down, which adds an additional element of tension. Depending on the player’s previous choices and allegiances, they’ll have different weaponry and other unique items at their disposal.

Blinzler continues his State of Modding interviews. The most recent interviews are with Antistar, who created Weapon Mod Kits and the Project Valhalla Team. Here’s an excerpt from the latter:

What is “Project Valhalla” about?

The premise of the story ties in very closely with the original Fallout lore but tries to expand upon a significant part of what is currently left unanswered. That mainly being what has happened to the state and people of Europe since the war of 2077. This mod tries to explore that idea with a story driven mod about Europeans who come to America on a quest to recover and research PreWar technology.

Moving along, J3X put up a new trailer for Enclave Commander — coinciding with the release of version 0.8. You can watch it after the break…

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