Todd Howard gives an Irrational Interview

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Irrational Games’ new interview series “Irrational Interviews” launched this morning, and seeing as Irrational’s Ken Levine and Bethesda’s Todd Howard have known each other for years, it’s fitting that the pilot episode features the two chatting for a good 45 minutes.

Levine and Howard were joined by podcast host/associate producer Shawn Elliott, the trio touching on in-depth topics that ranged from in-game flashback sequences to slot machine design. Give the episode a listen over on the Irrational Games site.

Around the web (and in print, too)

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Here’s a quick look at news I found on our games online (and some in print as well)..

Can you believe it’s been over four years since Oblivion was released? Last week The Koalition’s Gary A. Swaby posted a new article discussing how the RPG holds up today. Here’s an excerpt where he discusses quests within the game.

“Elder Scrolls: Oblivion is damn near unbeatable. Sure the main storyline quest is beatable within a couple hours, but the main quest is nothing. There are literally hundreds of quests in this game, and given the world which Bethesda has created for you, you will definitely attempt to complete as many as you can. The fact that there are two huge expansion packs doesn’t make it any easier either.”

Oblivion also gets mentioned in BitMob’s Top 5 Video Game Sequences written by Omar Yusef, where they included the Dagon Shrine questline

“It was this specific mission that appropriately demonstrated Oblivion’s breadth. The game allowed players to brazenly hack and slash their way through difficult scenarios or sneak past them. Each problem players were faced with could be approached from a number of angles. In essence, the Dagon Shrine proved that Oblivion catered to almost every type of role player, which is why it’s worthy of commemoration.”

One final bit on Oblivion. The latest (June) issue of OXM has a small feature titled, “The Developer’s Cut,” where developers discuss content from their games that didn’t make the final release. On page 87, Todd Howard discusses content cut from Oblivion. Head to your local newsstand (or your mailbox) to read it, as well as a new preview for Hunted: The Demon’s Forge.

Putting a bow around this roundup, author Grant Tavinor recently released a new book, The Art of Videogames, featuring Fallout 3 on the cover. Throughout the text, you can find references to DOOM, Oblivion, and Fallout 3 (I’m particularly interested in reading the chapter “The Morality of Videogames”). For more on the subject, Tavinor recently wrote a column for Kotaku in response to comments from film critic Roger Ebert.

Updated: GameSetWatch’s Emily Short has an in-depth look back at her play experience with Fallout 3. Read the article here.

Around the web

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This week at USA Today’s Game Hunters, Todd Howard shares his favorites games of the Naughties, Aughties, Oughties, or simply the 2000′s. Already his comments about Gran Turismo 3 have had traction (tires…traction…get it??) with readers. To see the rest of his favs, head here.

Read more after the break…

Continue reading full article ›

Todd making (radio) waves again

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DJ Todd is at it again. Following an appearance on Kotaku Talk Radio yesterday, Todd was featured this morning in a news story on NPR.

Joshua Brockman’s story, When Pay Means Play: Video Game Jobs on the Rise, is apart of an ongoing series this week on NPR called New Jobs For A New Decade. Featuring Todd and a few others, the story focuses on the growing popularity of games in the United States, and the new jobs coming out of that demand.

Read or listen to the story here.

Todd Howard raps Live on Kotaku Talk Radio tomorrow

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Have you ever wanted to have a conversation with Bethesda’s own Todd Howard? To just hang out and really get to know the man? To chat long into the night about the most intimate of Fallout and Elder Scrolls details?

Well, we may not be able to help you there. However, we can offer you the chance to ask Todd a question on Kotaku Talk Radio. He’ll be making an appearance during tomorrow’s show, which kicks off at 1pm EST.

K-Talk is a live broadcast production, so a few lucky callers will get to query Todd in real-time. Be sure to ask him to bust a few rhymes — T-How’s got mad skills, but rarely gets the chance to flaunt.

Head on over to Kotaku for more details.

Update: You can now listen to a replay of the podcast or download it from iTunes.

Around the web: Back to the Future edition

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Great Scott! As one of the few creatures scurrying around the office, today already feels like the night before Christmas, even if it’s two nights before Christmas. Most everyone has left for the holidays, and I’ll be doing the same soon. But before I head out, I thought I’d round up some of the latest online coverage — this time dominated by coverage of the 2000s, 2009, and 2010.

Top games of the decade, top stories of the year, best dinosaurs of all time — with both the year and decade coming to an end, these lists keep coming in. We start with IndustryGamers’s Top 20 Stories of 2009 –which features ZeniMax’s aquisition of id Software at #18. Speaking of id, RAGE makes Telegraph’s Top 10 Most Anticipated Games for 2010.

Elsewhere, Fallout 3 is in good company in Big Download’s Best PC Games of the Decade, while Morrowind and Oblivion share a spot in GameStooge’s Top 50 (with the countdown still going). Also, at The Yorker, Bethesda Game Studios ranks #9 in a list of the Top Ten Game Developers of the Decade.

While most sites are looking back at 09 and the decade as a whole, Joystiq revisits 2008 to help gamers find great titles with better deals. Making the list is Fallout 3.

Heading back to the future, head to Splash Damage’s site — where they have news on the “most wanted” lists Brink is making for 2010.

On the subject of what people want — see what Pete and Todd (and other industry folks) told Kotaku they want for Christmas. More on that soon.

Todd returns (again!) to OXM podcast

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In podcasting news, earlier this month Todd Howard returned to KOXM – the official podcast of OXM — to discuss important things like burning maps in a warehouse, John Carmack’s cars, Fallout 3 DLC, and help give a proper send off OXM’s Dan Amrich — who recently shipped out of OXMland to head to Activision.

Give it a listen. You’ll want to download episode 193 at iTunes.

Roundup: Fallout 3 DLC captures more awards

The downloadable content for Fallout 3 may have earned you a few digital trophies, but now it’s earning the team that made it some real metal. That’s Todd up there above, graciously accepting Machinima.com’s Inside Gaming Award for Bethesda’s post-release support of the game.

G4′s X-Play also saw fit to bestow its award for “Best DLC” to Fallout 3′s Broken Steel add-on, specifically. Check out the full presentation here.

As the end of the decade draws near, more sites are rolling out their “Game of the Decade” selections. The Guardian is the latest; Morrowind and Oblivion made the top 30, while Fallout 3 cracked the top 10.

Looking ahead to 2010, MSN UK reminds you that Brink is one of the games to look out for, saying: “If immediately accessible and flowing movement weren’t enough of a draw, Brink uses state-of-the-art graphics and physics.”

On a ridiculous note, Bethesda environment artist Megan Sawyer passed along this video of someone controlling their Christmas lights with a Guitar Hero peripheral. What?

If you’ve got any festive plans that involve any of our games, shoot us an email.

Around the web

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TGIF! As you countdown to the weekend, here’s some coverage for you to read up on.

With Halloween tomorrow, I thought I’d share all the entries in Joystiq’s 2009 Pumpkin Carving Contest. Among all the awesome entries, you’ll find Fallout contributions (pics 55, 57 — shown above, and 80). Really great stuff — bums me out I never got around to carving one.

Moving along, a new blog post at Bitmob was motivated by a tale of evil things you can do in Fallout 3. So out of curiosity, Dan Hsu asked folks around the gaming industry to share their memories of “doing evil” in games. Among others, the list includes Todd Howard and Emil Pagliarulo, as well as some other guys tied to the Fallout franchise (Obsidian’s Feargus Urquhart and Chris Avellone). Find out their evil deeds here.

The latest AVault podcast (#53) is up and features Pete Hines. Give it a listen (as I’m doing right now) to hear him discuss Fallout 3, Brink, id Software and more.

Lastly, Strategy Informer recently put up a new preview for Rogue Warrior. You can read it here. Elsewhere, you can check out the game’s achievements at none other than Xbox 360 Achievements.