I realized the other day that we hadn’t really talked with any of our level designers so here is Jeff Browne. Jeff did some great work on our Oblivion DLC, including Knights of the Nine and Shivering Isles. He is now hard at work, putting together some pretty amazing levels for Fallout 3.
Fighter’s Stronghold stays #1, surpassing #2, Vile Lair, by almost twice as much. We did notice a sizeable increase in the number of players on Xbox Live, playing Oblivion, after the holidays. Thanks to everyone to purchased/gifted Oblivion to someone.
Top Five Oblivion Xbox Live downloads for January 2008*
1. The Fighter’s Stronghold
2. Vile Lair
3. The Wizard’s Tower
4. Spell Tomes
5. Mehrunes Razor
The March 2008 issue of OXM made its way onto my desk today and thought I’d share some interesting mentions of our games….
In their “2008 Preview” feature, Fallout 3 is among 50 titles they think should be on your radar. Also, on page 21, if you look waaay down at the bottom, you’ll see that they wouldn’t be surprised if Fallout 3 gets pushed to next year. To that, I’ll reference what Pete said here.
The issue also looks back at 2007 with their “Game of the Year Awards,” and we were happy to see Shivering Isles came away with the award for Downloadable Content of the Year, making it the second year in a row we’ve won that award. I’m also happy to learn that Avatar and TMNT are great titles to boost my Xbox Gamerscore. Time to check those ones out. Like some other folks at the office, I’m a sucker for achievement points.
To check out the rest of the previewed games for 2008 and see who the big winners and losers were in 2007, check out the March issue on a newstand near you.
This morning I got an email from Fred Zeleny saying that I needed to check out his birthday cake downstairs in the kitchen. Knowing that Fred likes to dress as a Fallout Raider and even put a Fallout sign in his hair, I was anxious to see the cake with my own eyes. Still, walking down the stairs, I couldn’t shake the vision of the cake you see at the end of Portal (sorry, SPOILERZ!). You can imagine the look on my face when I this concoction instead.
Can you believe how fast January came and went? With 2008 kicking into gear, I’m seeing less Mass Effect and The Orange Box and more Rez HD, Poker Smash!, No More Heroes, and Advance Wars: Days of Ruin. Of course, not everyone has moved on. Take Associate Producer Tim Lamb — I did some checking, and it looks like you have to go back to late October to find the last time he wasn’t gung ho for Call of Duty 4.
Here’s what Tim and the rest of the gang are playing over the weekend…
Craig “I Jinxed the Patriots” Lafferty, Producer: Culdcept Saga, Devil May Cry, 4, Poker Smash!, Rez HD, Advance Wars: Days of Ruin DS â€“ yeah, for like 15 minutes each.
Jenna Noland, QA: No More Heroes.
Gavin Carter, Producer: Nursing my Advance Wars: Days of Ruin addiction. Continuing the slog towards my A-class license in Burnout. Fighting the Tax Man and trying to get the lowest score possible.
As if Gabe and Tycho from Penny Arcade weren’t everywhere already (if you’ve been under a rock, they even have their own game coming out), modder HidekiShashu put on YouTube a video that shows how he’s brought their likeness into Morrowind. This first video shows Gabe interacting with Tycho. There’s also another short video with Gabe showing off his cardboard tube weapon.
What’s next? Maybe someone can make an Oblivion level with Zero Punctuation-esque animation.
Kevin Kauffman. Laid back. Handsome. Stylish dresser. QA Lead. While Kevin’s title may be QA Lead, he is just as important — if not more — to the success of Fallout 3 than most producers on the team (including me). He works his tail off and we’re fortunate to have him.
This isn’t related to any of our games, but I figured it was worth sharing. Looks like this guy, Michael Hickox, used stop-motion filming and a bunch of Legos to recreate level 1-1 from Super Mario Bros. I’m not sure about what type of additional effects were implemented, but I like it. If you check his YouTube page, you’ll see he’s done a couple more levels.
If anyone’s done anything remotely like this for Star Trek, Fallout or the Elder Scrolls, I want to see it!
Back in November, we posted about a Portal Map, Ren_Test2, that our very own Daryl Brigner designed. Daryl, and the rest of us at the office, were surprised and excited to see the response it received. In addition to becoming the most popular post on Bethesda Blog, buzz about the map spread to numerous gaming blogs and it was even featured in a recent issue of PC Zone.
Well, Daryl’s done it again. This morning he let me know that a new level, appropriately titled_Ren Test3, is now available for download. In addition to the new map, Daryl has included Ren_Test 1&2 in the same download. The download also offers Step, Portal, and Time challenges for you Portal fanatics that are looking for a real challenge.
According to Daryl, here is how you can install them to your PC:
Simply extract the Ren_Tests.bmz anywhere, then load up Portal, click ‘Bonus Maps,’ click “Import Bonus Maps”, then just navigate to where the Ren_Tests.bmz file is, select it, and click ‘Open.’ Then, the Ren_Test Mappack will be in your Bonus Maps window.
Sounds simple enough. If you check it out, let us know if you think it’s as devious as Ren_Test2.