In 2001, Todd Howard came by my cube and asked if I could help him track some work on a project his team was working on. The project was, of course, Morrowind. I would guess the team was somewhere around 40 developers then, maybe less. A year later — and six years ago today — we went gold and shipped the following week. As successful as Oblivion has been for us, it could not have happened without Morrowind. The team, processes, tools, technology, lore, fan feedback — we learned so much from Morrowind and put it all into Oblivion. Open ended RPGs are not easy projects to work on and very few knock it out of the park on the first try.
If you liked Oblivion, try Morrowind. The Xbox version is backward compatible on Xbox 360, and the PC version should run easily on any computer that is out now. Make sure you get the Morrowind Game of the Year edition, which will include the two expansions, Tribunal and Bloodmoon. Let us know in comments which of the games we’ve worked on is your favorite.
Other good news today — Major Nelson released his top 10 Xbox Live titles today and Oblivion is back on the list at #10…a full two years after its initial release. It used to surprise me, but no more — Oblivion has got major legs. Major legs.
Death in games is traditionally something to be avoided. Yet I’m sure in moments of weakness and frustration, we’ve all indulged in the urge to purposefully send our ill-behaving digital characters to their doom down some spiky pit or fiery furnace. For those who can’t get enough of such anti-social behavior, I recommend downloading Karoshi and Karoshi 2.0 by 2D Cube (aka Jesse Venbrux), a pair of hilarious puzzle platformers.
“Karoshi” is a Japanese term that translates literally into “death from overwork.” Playing a suit-clad businessman, the object is, quite simply, to kill yourself. Each level is laid out using a variety of very simple elements — blocks, spikes, safes, and a small variety of set dressing pieces. The game controls like a standard platformer, and death can be visited on your character a number of ways. Whether you collide with a set of spikes, fall off the world to your death, or get your head smashed in by a falling safe, you’re rewarded with a cloud of blood and and an explosion of limbs guaranteed to put a smile on your face.
This fan video is nearly two years old, but since it’s been showing up in my Google and Technorati updates lately, I figured it’s worth sharing. In this video, the often-abused Adoring Fan is victim to some well-placed (and well-timed) bow and arrow fire.
If you’ve got a cool video to share, feel free to email us with suggestions for the blog.
This week’s mod interview is with Keter_Sephiroth, an Oblivion modder that specializes in animation mods. Sephiroth (obviously a fan of Final Fantasy) lives in Saint Petersburg, Russia, and spends a fair amount of his free time studing martial arts, philosophy, esotericism, psychology, and life ethics.
Keter_Sephiroth also has a keen interest in machinima and making game trailers. At the end of the interview, you can see a sample of his work, as he also responded to the interview via game video. Check it out!
As many of you can relate, it’s not always easy getting through a Friday. With nice weather and the weekend in sight, it’s easy sometimes to lose focus. This wasn’t the case for me today. In what hopefully will become a new tradition at Bethesda HQ, today marks the second consecutive Friday where we’ve had masseuses visit the office.
Now that we’re all relaxed, it’s time to sit back and play some games. Let us know what you’ll be playing, and have a great weekend!
Fred Zeleny, Writing Fool: Rondo of Swords on DS â€“ far harder and more complicated than it has any need to be, and yet it’s strangely compelling. And since I’ll be at CMU’s Spring Carnival, I’ll also be playing dozens of cheapo booth games, eating far too much funnel cake, and riding the highly suspect whirl-a-puke! Hooray for Spring!
Today we’ve put out a press release announcing the Collector’s Edition of Fallout 3. The CE will be available for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC. This premium edition of the game will be presented in a customized, metal Vault-Tec lunch box that includes:
A copy of Fallout 3 (you didn’t think we’d forget that, did you?)
A 5″ Vault-Tec Vault Boy Bobblehead
The Art of Fallout 3: a hardcover book, which features never-before-seen concept art and commentary from Bethesda Game Studios artists
The Making of Fallout 3: This DVD includes an inside look at Bethesda Game Studios and the team behind Fallout 3
We’ll be sharing more details on the Collector’s Edition in the near future. Stay tuned for more information.
Inside the Vault presents Jonah Lobe, character artist. If you’ve played Shivering Isles, the expansion to Oblivion, you’ll be familiar with Jonah’s character art work. He also did some work for Knights of the Nine, as well. (Jonah’s answer for worst job ever sounds like the plot for an installment of GTA…)
“We had a year’s head start on the 360 because it came out a year earlier, so we had final dev hardware to work with earlier on than we did with PS3,” he said. “But as this point all three of them are pretty much on par. The goal is that, if I get three versions in here and hide the console or PC and just had them running on the screen, that you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference.”
Is this the end of the site’s coverage, or will there be more? Head over here to keep track.