Inside the Vault: Kurt Kuhlmann

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Today’s Inside the Vault is about senior designer, Kurt Kuhlmann. Kurt has worked on a few Elder Scrolls titles including Oblivion. Much of how we implement quests in the Construction Set, especially when we transitioned to Oblivion from Morrowind, was conceived by Kurt. He once made a web version of the board game, Lord of the Rings: The Confrontation, after we became addicted to it in the office.

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What we’re playing: Playing Catch Up with the Holiday Hits

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Week after week, folks at the office were picking up the latest “AAA” titles to play, and as a result, I’m guessing most everyone now has a pile of games to play. Luckily, most of the big releases are now out, so we can put away our wallets and focus on the games we’ve got.

Here’s what you’ll see our team playing over the weekend:

Daryl Brigner, Level Designer: Rock Band, Kane and Lynch, and Super Mario Galaxy

Megan Sawyer, Environment Artist: Rock Band, Catz 2, possibly breaking out some older DS games I haven’t played yet like Trace Memory.

Jay Woodward, Death, Shatterer of Worlds: Mass Effect, Star Trek: Conquest.

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Giving Thanks

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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 fiancée.

Nathan McDyer: I’m thankful that after almost 2 years I’m still on my first 360.

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Inside the Vault: Charles Harribey

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Bethesda is not just a developer but a publisher as well. So today’s Q&A is with Charles Harribey, one of our producers who handles external projects. Charles is primarily reponsible for our Star Trek games, and since we shipped his latest project today – Star Trek: Conquest — we thought it fitting to give some insight into Charles’ world.

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What we’re playing: It’s that time a year!

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For a couple of weeks now, there’s been plenty of new games hitting the market that have had the office abuzz. Last week it was Call of Duty 4, and now this week we’ve got Super Mario Galaxy and Assassin’s Creed, which you’ll see folks are pretty excited about. Not only that, Ash and a few other guys have already started digging into Bioware’s Mass Effect. Earlier this week, a bunch of members from the team headed into the theater to get a peak at the game.

Speaking of games hitting early, there’s rumors that some guys at the office will be rocking to a new game very soon…

Chris Esko, Systems Programmer: Mass Effect (thanks, Microsoft!), Super Mario Galaxy, Guitar Hero III

Ashley Cheng, Producer: Mass Effect

Jennifer Noland, QA: Super Mario Galaxy.

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Inside the Vault: Orin Tresnjak

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This edition of Inside the Vault features programmer, Orin Tresnjak. Orin is one of the awesome programmers who work on multiple systems. He’s worked on a variety of interfaces and shaders, and even made tools for creating DLC and PC installers (Orin even pitched in and made the installer for Star Trek: Legacy). In short, we drop Orin in and cool stuff results.

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My Faves: Full Throttle

Where we talk about stuff we love…

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Having just heard Tim Schafer talk at a conference, I got thinking about one of my favorite games of all time — Full Throttle, a point and click adventure game and one of Tim Schafer’s best games in my opinion. Published by LucasArts in 1995, Full Throttle represents LucasArts’ adventure game golden years – along with Day of the Tentacle, Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis and the Secret of Monkey Island. Let me say, however, that I LOVE all these games. I’ve loved every adventure game LucasArts released starting from 1987′s Maniac Mansion to 1998′s Grim Fandango. I was heartbroken when the sequels to Full Throttle and Sam & Max were canceled.

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