Around the Web: Neapolitan Style

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Little bit of everything in this round up.

Over at Yahoo the YVG crew has put up their list of the 10 Best Games of the Last Decade and has included Oblivion as their pick for 2006, noting:

“There are big games, there are huge games, there are epic games, and then there’s Oblivion.”

Always cool to see your game on a list like this. Head over to see the full list and what else they had to say about their pick of Oblivion and their other nine selections.

I also noticed a note over at TGR that the videogame symphony tour Play! has announced some new dates, and since it features the music from both Morrowind and Oblivion, I thought it was worth nothing it’s headed to Fort Worth and Seattle in January ’08 for two shows at each stop. Visit the Play! site for more info.

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Inside the Vault: Gavin Carter

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This week’s Inside the Vault is about Gavin Carter, our lead producer on Fallout 3. Gavin is responsible for one of my favorite Elder Scrolls quests – Tribunal’s A Star is Born, which involved the player acting in a play. We tried to reprise the concept of the “play” quest for Oblivion, but unfortunately, it ended up on the cutting room floor. Gavin has been involved with Fallout 3′s development from the very start, and he will be responsible for getting it to the finish line, as well (No pressure, Gav).

This will be our last Inside the Vault for 2007. I believe these interviews are a great way to learn more about the passionate, fascinating people working here at the studio. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about them as much as I have.

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PCGZine Interviews Pete

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Fallout 3 coverage continues to trickle in. The latest coverage comes from the online magazine, PCGZine, who recently spoke with Pete about the game. Here’s a sample of the interview:

Fallout 3 looks to be a very dark game. Where will the glimmers of hope come from? The plot? The gameplay? Twisted moments of black humour? How would you describe the game’s personality?

Pete: The glimmers of hope come from the people you meet. Where there’s humanity, there’s hope – people have dreams and aspirations. And you can squash those dreams, or help people fulfill them. Definitely plenty of dark humor, but I don’t’ know if that’s where I’d look for glimmers of hope.

Is Fallout 3 an action game, or a strategy game? And if it’s both can you tell us about passages of play that typify each element. Actually, why not tell us anyway…

Pete: It’s a role-playing game. First. Last. Always. Any role-playing game always absorbs bits of other genres in terms of how it presents combat or what the player is doing, but it is a post nuclear role-playing game to its core.

To read the rest, download PCGZine’s latest issue (#13) here.

Mod Interview: TES Nexus’ DarkOne

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In a bit of a twist, this week’s mod interview is with Robin Scott (aka DarkOne), the site administrator over at The Elder Scrolls Nexus. Before working on TES Nexus, he was also the brains behind The Elder Scrolls Source. Currently, Robin in a university student living in Exeter, a small city in southwest England.

On to the interview…

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Bethesda and Bioware Brawl

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As mentioned before, many of our devs take Team Fortress II pretty seriously when playing against other studios. This past week was a big one, as the Vault 101 Dwellers took on the boys from Bioware. Check out our very own Nate Purkeypile’s summary of the victory. It’ll be remembered here at the office as “Mass Beatdown.”

Last night, two titanic forces met in a battle of epic proportions. A prophet foretold of the match ages ago and said that two studios would have a battle to decide once and for all, who was the best RPG studio…well, or who was better at a multiplayer shooter. The day… was a Thursday. The maps would be Dustbowl and 2fort.

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Around the Web (and Print)

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A variety of things going on that I thought I would mention.

Matt did an interview with the folks at Games Radar for an article they were doing on “Are Developers Even Listening?” Matt’s responses are included along with folks from Lionhead, Rare, Epic, and Bungie. Head over to read the full article.

Primotech did their Game of the Year awards and voted Shivering Isles the Best Expansion. From the article:

Bethesda’s last expansion pack does more than throw open the door to a land suffering from a split personality. It adds nearly twenty to thirty hours of new quests, complete with plenty of gear to acquire and the opportunity to find out just how insane a Mad God can really be.

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What we’re playing: Everything under the sun

Wow, looking at this week’s list, I’m seeing more diversity in the games we’re playing. Sure plenty of folks are playing the recent favorites like Rock Band, Mario Galaxy, CoD4 and Team Fortress 2, but I’m also seeing a wide variety of other stuff. Dan Ross is playing Onimusha on PS2!? Is this 2001? Nathan McDyer is going Neo Geo on us with Garuo: Mark of the Wolves. Our resident Fallout Raider, Fred Zeleny, is playing Fallout, as well as Passage…I’m not familiar with it, but as an art student, Fred says it’s worth checking out.

I think my favorite list this week belongs to Mike McGinn, as I’m eager to play both Contra IV and Delerium the next time I’m travelling. And anyone that plays Ikaruga is cool in my book…it’s the most hardcore top-down shooter I’ve ever played (be sure to check out the video above). As for myself, I’m digging into Christmas presents I shouldn’t be opening already. Thanks to my brother Chris in San Jose for sending Rock Band!

Here’s the rest of the list…

Shannon Bailey, Programmer: Persona 3, Eternal Sonata, Wii Boxing

Jeff Browne, Level Designer: Red Orchestra

Fred Zeleny, Game Writer and Right Gamer: Fallout 1 (the classic role-playing game), Team Fortress 2 (the I’m-gonna-burn-you-to-death game), Race for the Galaxy (the galactic conquest and economics card game), and Passage (the beautiful and melancholy art-game).

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Eurogamer announces contest to win PS3, Oblivion GOTY

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If you live across the pond from us, you know that Oblivion GOTY is arriving soon in Europe for the PS3 (if you don’t have it already). Just to refresh your memory, Oblivion Game of the Year features Oblivion, Knights of the Nine, and the Shivering Isles expansion — all on one Blu Ray disc.

To celebrate the occasion, Eurogamer has teamed up with Ubisoft (our publishing partner in Europe) for a contest to win a 40 GB PS3 and a copy of the game. Looks like they’ll also be giving four additional copies of GOTY for the runners-up as well. To enter, register on their site and then answer the following question:

“If all the people in the world camped out in your back garden would you write and tell the king or grab a tent and join them?”

Good luck!

Fallout “Defines” PC RPGs

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This morning I noticed that over at GamerHelp, they have a feature called “Pinnacle Games: 18 Games That Define Their Genre.” Of these 18 games, Fallout is considered the defining PC RPG game. Here’s a sample of what they said about it:

Most RPG titles have you duking it out as a knight or a mage in a fantasy setting rife with clichéd monsters like dragosn and orcs and trolls, oh my! But not so in Interplay’s Fallout, a breakthrough RPG title that was set in a memorable setting: post-nuclear holocaust Earth. The narrative dirve of the story was nothing new — a ‘chosen one’ ventures forth to save the world — but the presentation was something else: dark, gritty and visceral, the stark landscape of the atomically cleansed landscape was as inhospitable as it was compelling.

In addition to Fallout, there’s some pretty solid choices for other genres: Street Fighter II for fighting games, Ikaruga for the shooting genre, and of course Pete’s probably happy to see that Company of Heroes was their defining RTS game (Pete: I probably would have argued C&C or Warcraft is what got the genre started and established, but COH has changed what they’re about and what they can be).