Inside the Vault: Obsidian’s Joe Sanabria

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Welcome back for another edition of Inside the Vault. This week we meet Fallout New Vegas Senior Artist Joe Sanabria.

What’s your job at Obsidian?

I’m a Senior Artist here at the studio, which is what they call you when you get gray hairs and have been doing this for a few years.

My job in a nutshell is to make Fallout: New Vegas look good. I focus on the visual development of the game and define the artistic direction.

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Inside the Vault: Jason Bergman

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Inside the Vault offers up Jason Bergman for your perusal. Senior Producer at Bethesda Softworks. He works with external developers working on titles that we’re publishing. I’ve known Jason for a while; he used to score me free games when he worked at 2K Games. We’re happy to have him working with us (though, no more free 2K games, hmm…)

What is your job at Bethesda Softworks?
I’m the Senior Producer on Fallout: New Vegas. Which is a fancypants title that means I’m the primary point of contact for Obsidian Entertainment (the external developers working on the game) here at Bethesda.

My job is weird and varied. The easiest oversimplification is that it’s my job to make sure Fallout: New Vegas comes out on time and meets the standards we have for the game. When any of the various departments (QA, marketing, finance, etc.) here at Bethesda needs something, it’s me they go to. And then when Obsidian has issues, they talk to me. And of course I get to raise issues all on my own because I’m a troublemaker and that’s what I do. Plus I get to manage the budget and make sure people get paid, which is easily the most glamorous part of my job.

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Inside the Vault: Obsidian’s Larry Liberty

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For this week’s Inside the Vault, we’ve got Obsidian’s Larry Liberty —  who serves as a Senior Producer on Fallout: New Vegas. When he’s not working on games, he serves the people as Larry Liberty: Defender of Justice.

What’s your job at Obsidian?

Put simply, I manage the production of Fallout: New Vegas. In practice, that means managing a small team of producers that in turn manage the five cross-discipline teams of developers responsible for creating the game. [We have broken the team into smaller sub-teams, each focused on a specific goal each milestone. Incidentally, these teams are all named after items found in the Fallout universe: Team Buffout, Fancy(lads), Mentats, Nuka, and Psycho.] I manage two of the teams myself and coordinate with the rest of my production crew in a relatively organic manner. My primary job is to see that Josh’s [Josh Sawyer, Project Director/Lead Designer] vision is executed to the fullest extent possible while staying within scope.

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Inside the Vault: Obsidian’s Chris Avellone

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Q: What do transvestite dragons, Dodge Omnis and 32 ounce steaks have to do with Obsidian Entertainment?

A: They are all things closely related to esteemed Creative Director Chris Avellone.

Intrigued? Pull up a beanbag chair and prepare yourself — and your beef — for an Avellone assault in our latest Inside the Vault Q&A session.

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Inside the Vault: Feargus Urquhart

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This week we open the Vault to our friends at Obsidian Entertainment, who as you know are hard at work on Fallout: New Vegas. Up first, we’ve got their fearless leader, CEO Feargus Urquhart.

Has anyone ever pronounced your name correctly?

Not very often, but it does happen and it still surprises me. In school, it was always entertaining when we had a substitute teacher. They would go through the list of students and then there would be a pause. The whole class would look at me with a grin, and I would just say “Here.” That was then immediately followed by the question of my name’s nationality which is Scottish. Urquhart castle is on Loch Ness…Yep, the one with the monster.

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Inside the Vault: Andrew Scharf

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Today, we highlight one of our QA leads, Andrew Scharf. Why Andrew? Because he’s the QA Lead on Fallout: New Vegas!

What’s your job at Bethesda?
I’m a QA Project Lead. My responsibilities include scheduling testing throughout the various stages of the game’s lifecycle, managing the day-to-day tasks of my testing team, and maintaining the bug database to make sure that the issues we find are clearly communicated to the development team, management, and production.

Part of my job also involves the creation of test documents, including a high-level test plan that covers the “big picture” of how all the pieces fit together to make the game — and how our testing will thoroughly cover each of those pieces.

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Inside the Vault: Nick Breckon

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With Matt busy doing real work, it was up to me, Nick Breckon — Bethesda’s newest community manager — to interview myself for Inside the Vault. So here I am sitting by myself, uh, talking to myself.

What’s your job at Bethesda?
Good question! Technically I’m a “community manager,” which is one of those strange occupations that defies an easy definition. One has to assume that it’s my job to make sure everyone is entertained and happily chatting about the softworks that we produce; that I mainly get to sit around, play games early, and lay down some brutal forum beatdowns after a long lunch. I’m finding out pretty quickly that there really is much more to this job, though. For instance, sometimes we have Cookie Day.

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Inside the Vault: Ashley Cheng

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I’m working on getting more Inside the Vaults. They’re a-coming! I promise! To get things rolling again, I thought I would go ahead and do one. So, this is me.

What’s your job at Bethesda?
I’m the Production Director (fancy name for producer) for Bethesda Game Studios. I’m responsible for the day to day of the development team, scheduling and budgets, QA and testing, localization, running team meetings when Todd Howard is traveling, game library procurement, weekend and evening catering, commissioner of our Madden online franchise league, purchaser of buckets to collect rain water leaking from our ceiling. I’m the last one who touches our games before they go out into the world to be replicated, boxed and shipped out to stores and/or downloaded via Steam/Xbox LIVE/PlayStation Network, etc… My office is full of gold masters of every version of every game we’ve shipped since 2001. I have one of the best jobs anybody could ever wish for.

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Inside the Vault: Nathan Purkeypile

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Today’s Inside the Vault explores the exploding mind (see what we did there?) of Artist Nathan Purkeypile. This pic is from Purkey’s desk, where he’s got a huge poster of a bomb test.

What’s your job at Bethesda?
I am a world artist. On Fallout 3, I was tasked with doing passes on most of the major locations in the game to make sure that they were all as polished as possible. I also created some of the cities, such as Little Lamplight and Tenpenny Tower. Besides that, I also created some of the kits for dungeons, such as the cave kit and the neoclassical kit. I also lit about half of the interior cells in the game. After we shipped Fallout 3, I was heavily involved in a lot of the DLC, especially Point Lookout. I was the Lead Artist and Co-Designer on that project, it was a ton of fun to work on and you can blame all of the crazy ideas on Joel Burgess and me.

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