All the news fit to print

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Just went through a stack of magazines at my desk, and thought I’d share some of the highlights with you guys.

We just received the August issue of Game Informer, which includes a feature titled “The Art of Writing” that discusses how game studios prepare interactive storytelling in games. Check it out to read Lead Designer Emil Pagliarulo’s thoughts on the topic. If you’re thirsty for more, Game Informer Unlimited members can see more of his thoughts on storytelling here.

Over in the UK, the latest issue of Xbox World has an 8-page cover story on Fallout 3. Meanwhile, in the July issue of X-360, Lead Producer Gavin Carter sits in for their “Hot Seat” feature. Here’s a sample of Gavin discussing endings within the game:

“Most games either give you one big ending, or you get right to the end and then you get to make a choice which determines which ending you see from one of two, or three, or however many. We wanted to do something that was tailored more to your individual character and was based on your actions throughout the game, as opposed to one big choice at the end of the game.”

Lastly, if you haven’t read the Fallout 3 cover story in the September issue of PC Gamer (US), their web counterpart, GamesRadar, has confirmed it’s now on newsstands.

Around the web: Return from E3

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Pete and Co. (and the Fat Man) are back from E3. Here’s a look at some of latest Fallout 3 coverage on the internetz.

We’ll start at Kotaku, who have two Fallout 3-related posts today. First is a clip of Todd volunteering for their “Justify Your Game” series, where the participant has 15 seconds to do just that. If Todd’s 15 10 seconds doesn’t provide enough substance for you, Mike Fahey has a post discussing how different 30 minutes can be spent exploring the game.

Moving along, Robert “Apache” Howarth of Voodoo Extreme has his impressions of the game online. Here’s a taste of what he had to say:

“The demo started with us leaving the Vault; we just had to press a little button and off we went. As you might imagine, being an underground dweller for most of our life, the glare at first was overwhelming. After we rubbed the bloom from our eyes, we ventured forth into the wasteland to see what sort of trouble we could get into. We only had 30-minutes, so there was a limit to what havoc we could create, but I managed to explore the surrounding area a bit, enter a town, talk to a bunch of NPCs, collect a few new weapons and other items of interest, get a couple quests and of course, kill a bunch of radioactive critters.”

While time was limited at E3, Will Porter of PC Zone (UK) got to spend five hours playing the game when he visited our office last month. You can check out his impressions in issue 197 (now on newsstands) or just head over to CVG. Here’s a snippet:

“Having played the game for only five hours, and with many of the hang-ups people had with Oblivion only becoming apparent after 50, I can’t be definitive about this – but in terms of building a modern game on the systems of one that’s now 10 years old, it’s hard to think of how Fallout 3 could have been tied closer to what has gone before.”

If you’re eyes are too blurry from reading up on E3, there’s an audio interview with Todd that’s worth a listen. He discusses a variety of topics — including the game’s title, the world size, and the chance to win a pie. Mmm, pie.

For more coverage, hit the jump below…

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Some tidbits from the latest PC Gamer

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This morning I read through the August issue of PC Gamer (US) and thought I’d share a few things that you might be interested in looking at.

  • In Desslock’s monthly column (page 96), he discusses how he’d like to see improvements within open world games and cites Oblivion as an example. In one example, he mentions he’d love to see the skeleton heads from Oblivion being used as bowling balls and rib cages used as xylophones. Yeah, I can’t argue that.
  • For you modders out there, Brett Todd’s featured column “Homebrew” focuses on rules modders should abide by. Check out his “Five Commandments” on page 98.
  • On the final page of the magazine, Ben “Yahtzee” Croshaw discusses his experience playing Oblivion, and how he struggles sometimes with the concept of open-world games. If you haven’t seen it already, you can watch Yahtzee’s Zero Punctuation review of Oblivion here.
  • On the same page, there’s a blurb teasing that the next issue of PC Gamer (September 2008) will feature hands-on impressions of Fallout 3. A few weeks back, Senior Associate Editor Dan Stapleton came by the office to play the game. Here at the office, we’ll be just as interested as you guys to see what he thought.

If you’re a PC Gamer subscriber, the August issue of PC Gamer should be in your mailbox any day now.

Around the Web and on newsstands: New lists edition

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Today at the office, we received the 1,000th issue of Entertainment Weekly (since it’s a double issue, it’s actually issue #999-1,000). To celebrate the occasion, EW has a lengthy feature about the “New Classics” — where they list off the top 1,000 films, books, and albums of the last 25 years. While not as robust as some of the other lists, there’s also a list of the top 50 videogames from the past 25 years, with Oblivion making the list at #47.

For more news, hit the jump below…

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July magazines on newsstands

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After being out of the office for a good part of last week (travels and a bad back), I found a stack of magazines on my desk this morning, so I started sifting through them to find any coverage on Fallout/Oblivion/etc.

Here’s what I came up with. In the July issue of PlayStation The Official Magazine (US), there’s a 3-page preview for Fallout 3. Here’s a snippet:

Vault 101′s denizens are infamous for never venturing out into the world, so you can imagine the stir that ensues when your father suddenly vanishes. The Overseer naturally assumes you, now 19 years old, had something to do with his disappearance.

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New Fallout 3 coverage to follow

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Here at Bethesda HQ, we just got the June 2008 issue of Game Informer, which includes a new Q&A with Executive Producer Todd Howard. Here’s a snippet:

Game Informer: Are there going to be location-based encounters, or events not tied to particular quests or missions — such as the unicorn or goblin caves from Oblivion?

Todd: Absolutely, lots of that. We can’t stop ourselves from squeezing as much content as we can into every inch. I think the density is getting really good.

Be on the lookout for the new June issue of Game Informer on newsstands.

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