What We’re Playing…Soaking Wet

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Given that the rain shows no signs of stopping, looks like we’ll all have plenty of quality “inside time” for gaming. Here’s what we’re playing:

Craig Lafferty, Producer:  GTA IV, Fallout 3

Michael Lattanzia, QA: Age of Conan Beta, Grand Theft Auto 4, The World Ends With You, Hellgate: London

Orin Tresnjak, Graphics Programmer: The World Ends With You, Puzzle Quest.  Maybe some Mario Kart Wii.

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BethBlog Interviews Inon Zur

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I had a chance to chat with Inon yesterday and ask him some questions about his background, experiences, and thoughts on music and gaming.

Tell me about your career as a video game composer. How did you get your start?

I started composing music for video games about 1997. The first game that I composed was Planet Academy. I got to know my agent Bob Rice at this time, and he introduced me to Interplay. I did many games for them, at least three of the Star Trek games, Icewind Dale 2, and Baldur’s Gate, Throne of Baal, and also Fallout Tactics.

This is actually where my relationship with Fallout started. I really fell in love with this kind of musical concept, which is totally different from other games. It’s totally mood driven rather than thematic or rhythmically driven. The music is basically trying to cater to a certain mood, while not using much of what you’d really expect from a regular score. It’s a little different.

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Inside the Vault: Emil Pagliarulo (Redux)

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This week’s Inside the Vault revisits Fallout 3 Lead Designer, Emil Pagliarulo. I thought it would be fun to do a Q&A that was a bit different. So, before heading down past the break, gentle readers, let me know if this slight change of pace is a good one or not. We have lots more Q&A’s with developers on the team coming up, too.

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Around the Web: Pags Edition

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Just a brief note for today. Emil sat down yesterday with Kris Graft from Next-Gen and some of his colleagues for a discussion on all things gaming. You can hear the results of that session in a podcast over on Game Theory where Emil chimes in a variety of topics.

In addition, Kris posted a short interview with Emil over at Next-Gen that covers some of the discussion from the podcast, such as:

Next-Gen: Because it’s different for every game designer, give us your idea of what storytelling is in games.

Pagliarulo: I think it changes all the time. I think even with the release of GTA IV it has even changed again. Who knew that GTA IV would progress narrative in videogames. I don’t think anyone saw that coming. But for me story in videogames is about writing for the medium. It’s getting people who understand videogames and how to craft a story for videogames, so that you have a mix of a solid narrative that the player can understand and be involved with, while using the medium of a videogame to let the player craft his own narrative. I think there’s a mix of both, and you need to have people who understand the medium in order to do that, or to give the player what they want in that regard.

Inon Zur Announced as Fallout 3 Composer

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We just sent out a release announcing Inon Zur as the composer for the Fallout 3 soundtrack. Here’s a quote from Inon from the release:

Fallout 3 is one of the most engaging and demanding projects I’ve scored,” said Inon Zur. “It was very rewarding to put all my creative energy into supporting Bethesda‘s vision for the game. I’m very proud of the outcome, and look forward to sharing the music with the players.

Over on the official site in the Downloads section you’ll find a couple sample tracks from the game’s soundtrack. Head over and take a listen. If you want to read more about Inon Zur check out www.inonzur.com.

We’ll have a short Q&A with Inon up in the next couple of days, so stay tuned.

Around the Web — Interviews Edition

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Gamespot (UK) has a video interview with Pete up now. Meanwhile in reading format, we’ve got new interviews with Pete in a variety of places.

First, the folks Gamesindustry.biz cover a lot of ground in their inteview Surviving the Fallout:

Q: How far are you going with the ‘go anywhere’ sense in this game?

Pete Hines: Very. If you want to see how many of the hours you can play without seeing an hour of the main quest, give it a shot – it will be lots. You could spend 50 hours, 70 hours, just doing stuff in the world and never once make an effort to figure out what happened to your dad. We want it to be a self-directed world, for players to just see what happens.

And the idea is that the main quest is not the only cool stuff going on – there are tonnes of miscellaneous free-form things out there for you to do that will be a lot of fun, that maybe you’ve got five or six quests at any time where you can figure out what to do next.

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What we’re playing: “Isn’t it obvious?” edition

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As if there was any doubt, GTA IV has taken our office by storm. Many guys here (though not everyone) seem to be loving the new Liberty City. On the night after the game came out, I noticed 29 friends on Xbox Live playing it at one time. I don’t think I’ve ever seen 29 friends online…period! From what I’ve played of the game so far, I’m definitely impressed. Last night when I couldn’t find something to watch on TV, I just started watching some Liberty City channels.

Let us know what you think of the game, or anything else you’re playing. Here’s our rundown of what we’re playing…

Todd Howard: GTA IV.

Ashley Cheng, Producer: GTA IV

Emil Pagliarulo, Lead Designer: Fallout 3, GTA IV, LOTRO

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Bethesda/Fallout at E3 2008

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Yes, Bethesda Softworks will be at this year’s E3 in LA.

Yes, we will have Fallout 3 there.

No, I don’t know why the ESA sent out a list that did not include us, just like they did last year. Maybe it’s because they had to go to print at a certain point and we hadn’t picked our space yet. No idea.

But we’ll be there and so will Fallout 3.